At Home With George Morris

EQ photography director, George Kamper, visited the equestrian legend at his home for some personal portraits.

George H. Morris is a legend in the show-jumping community and needs no introduction to many EQ readers. Over the course of his career, he has been highly successful as a rider, coach, clinician, author, and judge.

Morris was one of the top junior riders of his time. He won the prestigious 1952 ASPCA Alfred B. Maclay Championship and the AHSA Hunt Seat Equitation Medal Final when he was only 14 years old. He went on to be one of the best U.S. representatives the sport has ever seen, riding for the United States on eight winning Nations Cup teams between 1958 and 1960. He helped his team win a gold medal at the 1959 Pan American Games and a silver medal at the 1960 Rome Olympics.

Morris trained numerous riders at Hunterdon Stables in New Jersey. His students have won medals in the 1984, 1992, 1996, and 2004 Olympic Games.

With Morris at the helm as the U.S. Show Jumping Chef d’Equipe, from 2005 to 2012,  the team won the gold medal at the 2008 Hong Kong Olympics, and also won individual and team silver medals at the 2006 World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany.

Morris has often been referred to as the founding father of hunt-seat equitation and his teachings, technique, and style are revered around the world. His book, Hunter Seat Equitation, originally published in 1971, is often recognized as the definitive work on the subject and is now in its third edition. He has also authored several other books and videos on riding and judging, including George Morris Teaches Beginners to Ride, A Clinic for Instructors, Parents, and Students, and The American Jumping Style.

After he retired as Chef d’Equipe, Morris set his sights on developing the future of the sport by conducting clinics around the world.  He focuses on helping riders develop correct form and function and currently travels widely teaching clinics. One of his main events is the Gladstone Program, established by the United States Equestrian Team Foundation. It is an intensive week of training and education for exceptionally dedicated and talented show-jumping riders who are serious about their interest and desire to pursue a path that will prepare them for international competition.

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