American dressage rider Courtney King-Dye is back on horseback after suffering a serious brain injury when she fell while schooling at home in Florida on 3 March.
She suffered a fractured skull and small brain bleeds and fell into a coma.
Mrs King-Dye, who was disqualified from the 2008 Olympics when her mount, Mythilus, tested positive in a dope test, has ridden a horse twice during therapy since being released from Kessler Institute to outpatient care on 25 June.
In a blog on her website Mrs King-Dye wrote: “The first time, I was more nervous than before I rode in the Olympic Games.
“They told me it was OK to cry — they were great — but once I was on it was like [being] home. I didn’t know if I’d be able to do what I knew I must, but I did.
“I knew, for me, I had to separate the riding as a therapy, from the love of the horse. Even though I was working on very different things, it was still work. And once I was off, I let myself love him to pieces.
“He was great. His name is ‘Dude’ and he was great. I rode so ugly I thank God that it wasn’t on one of my horses… both for me, and for him!
“But you can’t take the trainer out of the girl. It was a very hot day, so Dude kept stopping by the door. Instinct took over, and by the third time I shocked everyone (including me!) by kicking poor Dude.
“He, who is trained to ignore everything the person on his back may do, very obediently ignored my pathetic one-legged kick. I was mortified, but it caused a good laugh.”