Zara Phillips on motherhood: It’s like having another elite performance horse [VIDEO]

  • CNN Equestrian caught up with Zara Phillips to discuss motherhood and how she found returning to riding after the birth of her first daughter Mia.

    The full interview will be on CNN Equestrian, presented by Jodie Kidd and broadcast on CNN International on Saturday 1 November at 5.30pm.

    So what was it like returning to riding after giving birth?

    “It was harder than I thought it’s going to be. I had a lot of friends who said ‘don’t come back too quickly’. I sat on a horse about five weeks afterwards for about ten minutes. I was teaching my muscle groups again what they were doing. You know I’ve never not ridden for that long.”

    How are you finding motherhood?

    “I’ve really enjoyed it. In a funny kind of way it’s like having another high performance horse on your hands. You’ve got to get them in a schedule and feed. I wasn’t maternal at all before I had Mia but I’m lucky she’s very good.”

    Will Mia’s childhood mirror your own?

    “William and I grew up together at the same time and my brother’s got kids too so hopefully they’ll be doing the same thing. What we did as kids… horses were a huge part of that.”

    How influential has your grandmother, The Queen, been?

    “I mean huge. Obviously you get this passed down through the family and we’re very grateful to our family and hobbies and traditions and the love and passion she’s got for the horses filtered down through the years. So yes it’s a massive influence I would say.”

    How much do you want to win gold at Rio 2016

    “Massively. You know when you come out of the Olympics you just go ‘let’s just do it all again’. To be able to come out with a medal was incredible. But we wanted gold and we probably should have got it. So we were kind of a little bit glum afterwards. But when we were given our medals it was so worth it and we were like ‘you know what? We got an Olympic medal’. But, yes we’d definitely like to go back and change the colour.”

    What type of personality is High Kingdom?

    “He’s very chilled out. I think it really helps that I’ve had him for that long and know him very well. Each year he’s got better and better.”

    And what do your horses mean to you?

    “Everything. They’re what I do — my work and my passion. I’m very lucky.”

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