5 minutes with: Paralympian Sophie Wells on psychology and being put off jumping *H&H Plus*

The Paralympic gold medallist on her fascination with psychology and the pony that put her off jumping

  • Sophie Wells is a grade V para dressage rider who also competes up to grand prix in able-bodied dressage. She is a triple Paralympic gold medallist, who has also won multiple golds at World and European Championships. She is aiming for the Tokyo Paralympics in 2021 with her top horse C Fatal Attraction.

    What’s the best book you have read?
    A book about psychology called Daring Greatly, by Brené Brown. I found it fascinating and it’s really helped me within my coaching, and life generally – I go back to it quite often.

    Favourite tunes for a road trip?
    Anything we can turn up loud and sing along to without hearing ourselves.

    Who was your first pony?
    A little 12hh liver chestnut mare called Crystal – she actually put me off mares for about 20 years! It was with her that I discovered that jumping wasn’t for me; I didn’t have adapted reins back then, and had a pretty awful saddle, but every time I went over a jump she’d buck or put her head down and I’d fall off. Dressage certainly seemed more appealing.