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Taking the reins: Saudi Dalma Malhas pines for her horses in Europe as she self-isolates

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By Euronews
Taking the reins: Saudi Dalma Malhas pines for her horses in Europe as she self-isolates

Equestrian Dalma Malhas from Saudi Arabia has had her training program halted due to the impact of COVID-19 and social distancing measures, like many athletes worldwide.

Malhas previously snatched third place at the 2010 Youth Olympics which earned her a bronze medal.

Before the start of the pandemic, Malhas was deeply focused on her training. Now in quarantine, she has embraced this time to reflect on her habits as well as develop new ones.

“Right now, I'm more focused on reviewing my life priorities, adopting new, good habits, getting rid of bad habits, learning new skills, eating healthy, spending time with the family. Of course, I always work out to keep up the fitness levels, but I'd say it's more(working)on myself as a whole,” she told Inspire Middle East.

Dalma Malhas training at her houseEuronews

What is it like for an equestrian to be kept away from her horses?

Dalma Malhas owns four horses split between France and Saudi Arabia.

“Of course, I'm missing my horses greatly. Immensely, really. I’m in touch with my trainer daily and I have their videos and pictures to really be a part of their daily training from a distance.”

In France, Malhas’ horses are being trained by Roger-Yves Bost. The Saudi equestrian explained that since Bost trains her horses in the grounds where he’s currently living, their routine is not affected by quarantine measures.

Dalma Malhas speaks to Inspire Middle East via video callEuronews

Bost won a gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics under the equestrian team jumping division and has been working with Malhas since.

When asked about her trainers, Malhas confidently affirmed: “My horses are in the hands of top professionals whom I trust and I'm looking at this as an opportunity to make a very strong comeback, even stronger than before.”

Looking into the future, Malhas is particularly looking for the FEI’s World Cup in 2024 in Riyadh.

“I'm extremely excited to deliver the best performance I possibly can,” she said.