ELLA at the Educational Forum organized by the Chinese Equestrian Association and Hong Kong Jockey Club - June 2022

Posted on 07 July 2022

We are excited to share our recent experience participating in Education and Equestrian Development through the recent Educational Training Forum hosted by the Chinese Equestrian Association (CEA) and the Hong Kong Jockey Club. This year’s theme revolved around “Equestrian Event Planning, Operations and Media  Communication”. 
The June conference aimed to promote the continuous upgrade, educational development and support of equestrian sports in China.  The 3-day session included “Masterclass” workshops presented by domestic and international industry experts, including Melissa Lu, founder of ELLA.

Though initially intended to be an in-person, live event held in Shanghai, the recent months and new wave of covid still at large, resulted in a mix of in-person and online events.  Ultimately, participant attendance was an immense success and feedback from the equestrian community well received.  The majority of attendees consisted of equestrian clubs, investors and owners, business/trade, event management and show operating teams, professionals and amateur enthusiasts.

As a pioneer for equestrian lifestyle in China’s fast growing and highly complex market, Melissa Lu founder of ELLA and Horsemanship Magazine’s Lifestyle Chief Editor was invited to share her experiences through the topic of “How to create an equestrian show atmosphere”.  

Her first slide began with the title underlined with a brushstroke. The brushstroke she began transcends time and culture.  In the East, Chinese calligraphy is revered and the horizontal single stroke symbolizes the number “1”.  Melissa says, “we all share a love for horses, which is why I selected this visual image.  It not only represents the number “1” illustrating the priority the horse has in our lives, at the same time she mentions it also gives the expression and movement of a horse’s tail blowing in the wind”.  

Through her sharing, Melissa takes the audience on a behind the scenes journey referencing current events, even art to inspire new ways of thinking and pose non-traditional methods of approaching equestrian events, such as through the lens of becoming a “storyteller”. 

Melissa also emphasized the importance of creating a “culture”, not mimicry as a form of flattery but daring innovation, authenticity and a boldness to try new things – to break out of the eastern societal pressures of a “perfectionist” mindset, instead finding breakthrough in the try, learn, fail process and just “be you”.  She also encouraged the need to keep an open mind, that one can embrace the modern without having to disregard tradition, find inspiration through new and old or blending of east and west. 

Additionally, Melissa went on to share practical and applicable examples from cases around the world such as CHIO Aachen (Aachen, Germany), WEG (Tryon, USA), Spruce Meadows (Calgary, Canada), Menlo Charity Horse Show (Atherton, USA), etc.

Melissa states, “Since the Chinese equestrian industry is evolving quickly, knowledge sharing, investing in building a “culture” and community is essential to furthering the success and healthy growth of the market”. 

Read the complete recap in ELLA's Newsletter.


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