Chatting with Susi Rogers-Hartley after her American Adventure

Last week we had the chance to catch up with Susi, a long-standing customer of ours and Champion Show Jumper, she had a lot to chat about after her American Tour late last year.  See what she had to say when we met her….

Kent Mobility -How did you come to know John at Kent Mobility and how did he help you?

Susi – My show jumping coach (Simon Travis) bumped into John at Tesco! He saw the Kent Mobility logo on the side of the van in the car park.

(At the time, my old chair had packed up and without the chair I couldn’t continue with being an equestrian, which meant having to sell my beloved Seamus).

Simon mentioned this to John and Kent Mobility have sponsored me ever since. My new chair arrived at the Hickstead Dressage Championships which I went on to win.

Kent Mobility – Explain what equipment you use and why you chose that specific product?

Susi –   I use the Quickie Salsa powered wheelchair with seat rise and tilt-in-space.

It’s my legs! The seat raise mode is vital. I use it to get on and off a horse, groom tack up, rug up etc. My horses are big… 17hh! I wouldn’t be able to cope in a normal wheelchair.

Kent Mobility – You recently went to America, what was the reason for your trip?

Susi – I’m a Veteran and a member of BLESMA (British Limbless Ex Servicemen’s Association). The rehabilitation week organised by Blesma was held in Arizona at the Cowboy College for a small group of members. Some were amputees, others partially sighted, and I was the only wheelchair user there.

We were learning how to be cowboys! Not just horsemanship but roping and branding cattle. It was great team building, singing and laughing around campfires with endless hours/days riding trails up in the mountains.

As well as team building, these rehabilitation weeks are designed to help us fight our demons like PTSD.

Kent Mobility – How did the Salsa Chair help you on your trip?

Susi – Because of the harsh terrain (mountains and desert), it’s not ideal wheelchair territory. I was only allowed to go because I’m a horsewoman and had “Salsa” – who would not have any trouble coping with the terrain.

Kent Mobility – What is the best thing about the chair compared to other equipment you have used before?

Susi – The “Salsa” is very reliable, she’s nippy in tight spaces, doesn’t mind the mud too much! And I’m very lucky to be sponsored by Kent Mobility. I feel so guilty when it comes to servicing and she’s caked in mud. But I’m on strict instructions not to hose her as it messes with the electrics!

Kent Mobility – What are your future plans for your next trip?

Susi – Equestrian wise, back home I’m a barrel racer. I race against able-bodied riders. We win many races, its huge fun! I’ve just heard the results of the 2018 league tables. I was 2nd in the whole of Norfolk and 3rd in Lincolnshire! I would like to compete in America, very much so.

I also do public speaking about resilience and overcoming adversity.  And it would be fantastic if I got to do another Lloyds Bank advert, riding The Black Horse!

Kent Mobility – When choosing the right mobility equipment, what would your advice be to others?

Susi – Don’t buy online!

I’ve had a bad experience with other companies who sold me mega expensive chairs which kept breaking down. The customer care was nil.

Visit Kent Mobility. Try everything and have a chat with their staff.

You can trust Kent Mobility. They have the knowledge and experience help you find what is best for you and your disability.

Kent Mobility – Thank you Susi that’s really kind and we’re very pleased that you’re happy with your Salsa and we look forward to helping you in the future.