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9 Interesting Facts About Carl Hedin, Swedish Dressage Rider

9 Interesting Facts About Carl Hedin, Swedish Dressage Rider

Carl Hedin is a prime example of how to live life to the fullest. This equestrian influencer has already achieved his biggest dream: he turned his passion for horses into his career.

Carl Hedin is a Swedish dressage rider, entrepreneur, and equestrian influencer. He was born on June 22, 1991, in Borås, southwest Sweden and has always been passionate about animals.

Carl runs one of the biggest equestrian social media accounts with 342k followers on his Instagram.

Besides competing at Grand Prix level and riding horses for a living, Carl also founded his own company. This talented and driven equestrian certainly seems to have it all!

Here are nine interesting facts about Carl Hedin!

Carl Hedin Started Riding at the Age of Seven

Carl used to accompany his sister to her riding school as a child. At the age of seven, he had the opportunity to try horse riding through a school program. He began attending riding school shortly after and the rest, as they say, is history.

Ever since he can remember, Carl has had an interest in animals and animal behavior. Therefore, it’s not surprising that he fell in love with horses as soon as he was exposed to them.

Carl Hedin with brown horse

Carl also decided early on that he wanted to work with horses for a living. In the following years, he made his most important decisions with this purpose in mind.

I think I was only around 14-15 years old. I can remember how I rode my bike or moped to the stable and fantasized about working with horses. And not just being a competitive rider or an entrepreneur, but building my whole life around horses,” the influencer told Maya Delorez.

Carl Hedin Lived in Various Countries

After finishing high school, Carl spent five years experiencing the equine industry abroad. During this time, he broadened his horizons, made new connections, and gained new experiences that helped him later in life.

Spending time away from home also helped him realize how much he loves his own country.

The equestrian’s first move was to Denmark, where he worked as an apprentice towards becoming a professional rider. It was here that Carl realized he could make a living out of riding horses.

After a year of grooming horses and riding on the side, his superiors promoted him to a full-time rider with a list of horses to ride.

For the first time, Carl felt like the tables have turned. Up to this point, he was always the one to pay for riding lessons, whereas now he was getting paid to ride.

After Demark, the influencer moved to Germany and finally to England. Here, he studied business with a focus on marketing at the Royal Holloway University in London. He then returned to Sweden to develop his company using the knowledge he acquired from his studies.

Carl Hedin Is a Grand Prix Level Dressage Rider

Carl Hedin riding a horse at the end of a dressage test competition

Dressage is undoubtedly Carl’s greatest equestrian passion. His Instagram is filled with photos and videos from his dressage competitions and clinics. He currently has around a dozen dressage horses in training at his stables near Gothenburg, southwest Sweden.

According to Eurodressage, Carl started competing internationally in 2009 at junior level with his horse Wictory D. In 2015, he was competing in the Under 25 division with a horse called Kataleis Vilja. Between 2015 and 2018, he competed at CDI small tour level on Chabot and Memphis.

Over the years, Carl has accumulated an impressive collection of medals and he is not planning to stop any time soon. His greatest achievement in competitive dressage so far was winning team gold at the Swedish Dressage Championships. He has also recently started competing in show jumping.

He Is Passionate About Training Young Horses

At his training facility, Carl regularly brings in and develops young dressage horses for sale. He also competes in young horse championships, where he is often at the top of his class.

When buying a young dressage horse, Carl considers three main factors: good basic gaits, correct conformation, and a size that suits him.

When a horse matches these criteria, Carl uses his gut feeling to decide whether to go ahead with the purchase. He bases this on the tens of thousands of videos he’s seen about dressage horses throughout his career.

Carl Hedin holding a chestnut horse in a ménage

When working with young horses, Carl likes to take a gradual approach. He always makes sure the horse has fully mastered a stage of training before moving on to the next one. Developing a positive relationship with the horse is also one of his top priorities as a horse trainer.

Carl also incorporates his knowledge of equine behavior into his training program. Ethology (the study of animal behavior) is something he’s always been really passionate about and it has shaped his career as a dressage rider.

Carl Hedin Does Show Jumping as a Hobby

In recent years, Carl has become more and more interested in show jumping. He told Maya Delorez that he enjoys the sport and is curious to see where it might take him. Besides, he’s always dreamed of having a show jumper on the side, and his followers appreciate variety in his content

Carl started competing in international show jumping in 2020. His first outing took him to the coastal town of Oliva Nova in Spain, where he competed on a few 1* events with two of his horses.

Carl Hedin Is the Founder of the Company Eques Management

Carl started Eques Management in 2013 when a demand arose for his services as a horse trainer. However, after around six months of running the company, Carl moved to London to study business. His company was dormant during his time at university until he moved back to Sweden to resume training horses.

Carl has been actively developing his company since 2015. The purpose of Eques Management is not to become a big company, but to simply finance Carl’s lifestyle with horses. He’s afraid that if the company grew to excessive size, he would lose his passion for horses and riding that’s at the core of everything.

Carl Hedin dressage riding with a horse in a ménage while looking at the camera
Credit: Eques Management

Besides horse training services, Eques Management also offers internship opportunities to aspiring riders. Although if you’re thinking of applying, we have bad news. The position receives a high volume of interest each year, while the company only takes on a couple of interns at a time.

Equest Management is by far Carl Hedin’s proudest achievement. Every other week I have to pinch myself in the arm and realize that I really have a fantastic job. I am so lucky that I get to do for a living what to me is the best thing ever. How can this really be my job?!” he told Maya Delorez.

Eques Management Is Based in Särö Stable

Since November 2016, Carl has been running his company at his very own facility. “Särö Stable” is located near the Swedish coast 20 minutes south of Gothenburg. Its facilities are state of the art and ideal for managing elite-level dressage horses.

Carl Hedin sitting on a bench with a small pony

At Särö Stable, Carl and his team offer high-quality training and care to talented horses. Their goal is to produce “Happy Athletes” that are healthy in both body and mind. All horses stabled with Eques Management receive high-quality housing, daily turnout, and excellent feed.

Carl and his team normally train around a dozen horses at once, ranging from 3-year-olds to Grand Prix level dressage horses. They also offer a limited number of horses for sale each year from Särö Stable

A Day in the Life of Carl Hedin

On Maya Delorez, Carl shared what an average day in his life looks like. He has his first ride at 7 in the morning, then has a quick bite for breakfast. Until lunchtime, he usually spends half an hour riding, long reining, or hacking different horses.

Carl’s afternoon schedule varies with the time of the year. In competition season, he spends some hours training his horses and himself. Otherwise, he either trains other riders, goes to meetings, or buries himself in office work. He also makes time every evening to post on his Instagram account.

When he’s not riding or doing other work, Carl likes to spend time with his dog Iris. Their close bond is evident from the influencer’s content that often features his best friend.

Carl Hedin with his dog Iris

Overall, Carl is extremely proud of the life and career he built around horses. “My biggest achievement is that I get to live out my biggest passion and that I make a living out of it.”

Carl Hedin Is an Ambassador for Maya Delorez

To support his business and ambitions, Carl partnered with several brands over the years. One of his most recent collaborations was with the Swedish equestrian brand Maya Delorez.

Maya Delorez offers a range of high-quality equestrian wear to active riders. Their clothes are made of four-way stretch material that is breathable, quick to dry, and most importantly, functional.

Maya Delorez has been sponsoring Carl’s endeavors since 2021. He also collaborates with other Swedish equestrian companies, such as Krafft, Agria, and Hööks, as well as Horseware Ireland.

Carl Hedin holding a black horse which is wearing a rug branded with Eques Management

Carl Hedin’s Tips to Aspiring Influencers and Riders

Are you hoping to one day become just like Carl Hedin? Then you’ll love our summary of his top tips to aspiring influencers and riders!

Influencers

Growing a social media account with zero followers is not easy, especially in the beginning. Carl believes it’s important to just be yourself and create interesting content. His advice is to ask yourself the question of whether your post is interesting for others to see before you publish it.

It’s also good to vary your content to keep your audience engaged. You can mix up informative and trustworthy posts with fun stories and bloopers.

On Eurodressage, Carl revealed that the best choice he ever took in life was to continue growing his Instagram account back in 2012. “Some of my equestrian colleagues tried to convince me to invest my time into other things, saying that social media was just a hype. Today it has become a source of income for me as well as a great tool to stay connected with my equestrian friends. Thanks to my account more doors have opened for me than I could’ve ever imagined,” he said.

Riders

To those dreaming about becoming professional riders, Carl’s best advice is to learn as much as you can about horses and riding.

Strive to be the best rider you can be and educate yourself about bigger areas such as entrepreneurship and leadership.

Knowledge is the best and lightest tool you can carry with you.” – Carl Hedin