We are dedicated to building a stronger partnership between horse and human.
Eliane van Reesema
Eliane has a passion for horses. She began riding competitively in the 1990s and has been recognized as one of the major figures in international dressage by the sport’s media. She initially trained with Sven Rothenberger and in 1999 moved to Bartels Academy in The Netherlands. In 2002, she won the Belgian Grand Prix in dressage, riding Jewel’s Caracol. In addition to competing on the dressage circuit in Europe and the US, Eliane is an internationally certified dressage trainer, having earned her Masters Degree in Horse Sportsmanship in Deurne, The Netherlands. She conducts clinics for riders and their mounts at top stables in the US.
Kate brings healthcare and new product development experience to the team. The early part of her career was spent at Pfizer, managing anti-infective and cardiovascular brands. Subsequently she was the head of marketing and new product development at Tegu, an eco-friendly toy company. In 2015, Kate and Laxmi started Athenity, creating a flexible project based work model for women. It was through Athenity that they first worked with Eliane. Kate has a strong love for the outdoors and has always enjoyed tracking her training progress. Kate graduated from Princeton University with a BA and received an MBA from the University of Chicago and an MPH from Columbia University.
Laxmi brings digital and technology expertise to the team. She has worked with several consumer, technology and media companies to bring digital transformations and innovation to traditional businesses. Most recently she was the Chief Digital Officer at The Michael J. Fox Foundation until she left to begin a journey as an entrepreneur with Kate and later Eliane. Hylofit combines Laxmi’s passion for technology and innovation in a company founded by women. She is also an avid skier and tennis player. Laxmi holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Rose started her obsession with horses when she was 6 years old and has been in the saddle ever since. Professionally, she’s spent her career in consumer technology and media with senior roles at Microsoft and Reuters in business development, sales and strategy. Hylofit combines Rose’s passion for horses with her work in data and emerging tech platforms. A graduate of Tufts University, Rose owns two horses and is an avid foxhunter.
Alexa has a very strong love of horses. She began riding at a young age and now competitively rides in the equitation/hunter ring. Alexa studied Communications and Marketing at Manhattanville College and has completed internships at major brands including Burt’s Bees Baby. Working with the Hylofit team aligns Alexa’s communications experience with her passion for riding, creating a great dynamic.
Brynn unknowingly started her career with horses at the age of 7 riding in summer camp. She spent time as a Quality Control Manager for a small aerospace company before her passion for horses took her to Lexington, Kentucky to pursue a Bachelors in Equine Science and Management from the University of Kentucky. Her experience encompasses time spent on the racetrack and in thoroughbred sales and as an upper level eventing groom and barn manager. She has also spent time on the medical side of the equine industry as a veterinary technician and in the pharmaceutical sales for 3 years at Hagyard Equine Medical. Brynn has a strong commitment to rehoming and retraining off the track thoroughbred’s and spends time competitively eventing with her thoroughbred Preacher’s Son.
Colby is a life-long rider (currently eventing) who has worked in and around the equestrian and fitness industries for the better part of her career. Notably, she was VP of Marketing at SmartPak Equine, VP of Marketing at Spartan Race and Chief Marketing Officer of US Equestrian. In 2016 Colby started Tightlines Marketing, a marketing consulting firm focused on new media, partnerships, and product development for equestrian and other enthusiast markets. It is in this role that Colby joined the Hylofit team in 2017. Colby brings a wealth of industry and practical experience to Hylofit both on the business front and as a user. Colby graduated with a BA from Bates College.
Dr. Tim Worden specializes in the translation of human high-performance training theory and techniques to equestrian athletes. With expertise in both equestrian sport and sports science, he is uniquely positioned to move training techniques from ‘human to horse’; improving the performance of horses and reducing injury risk. Tim completed his MSc (Biomechanics and Neuroscience) and PhD (Biomechanics) at the University of Guelph, Canada. He has published a number of peer-reviewed articles on human navigation through complex environments and the control of stability during locomotion. During his time as a graduate student, Tim also worked as an equestrian sport scientist, with a clientele composed largely of FEI-level show jumping riders.
PRODUCT TESTER and SALES
Monique has been involved with horses her entire life. This includes riding and competing, but her true passion lies in the grooming and management of horses. Originally from the Netherlands, Monique has an enormous amount of experience in the field, having worked for some of the top show jumping riders and stables in Europe. One major highlight is being apart of the success of the Dutch Team at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. With her immense amount of knowledge of the horse world & keen eye for detail, Monique also worked in the world of real estate, focusing on equestrian properties in Wellington, FL.
PRODUCT TESTER and SALES
Alexandra has been involved in many aspects of the equestrian world. After completing a year of Sport Management at Brock University, Alexandra began a working-student position with David Marcus in 2011. Having the opportunity to groom and ride at a high-level competition barn was an extremely beneficial experience for Alexandra as she gained immense knowledge in regards to all aspects of barn/horse management and international competition. She was a groom for team Canada at the 2012 London Olympics.
Annie started her career as groom for dressage and jumper horses at Brilliance Stables with Denielle Gallagher-LeGriffon and subsequently was a groom for team Canada at the London Olympics. In recent years, Annie has expanded her work in the equestrian industry to include sales and barn management. She is also an avid rider in equitation and competes as a jumper. Annie loves the simplicity of the Hylofit hardware and how easily it has become a part of her daily grooming routine.
THE PROBLEM: OVERTRAINING & INJURY
During the spring of 2015, Eliane was prepping her Grand Prix horse, Jewel’s Adelante for the summer events at Saugerties and Devon when he injured himself and was sidelined for 4 months. Bringing a horse back from injury can be a long process, and there is a very high risk that the horse, if not fully recovered, can be re-injured more severely. In January of 2016, Eliane got the green light for Adelante to return to competition and she resumed training. But in March, Adelante re-aggravated the old injury and once more had to sit on the sidelines.
Overtraining and injuries are common problems in horse training. The line between over and undertraining is razor thin and training a horse to peak performance involves managing a slippery balance between strain and recovery. Even the most experienced riders often wonder “Am I training my horse too much or not enough?” While looking for help with Adelante’s recovery Eliane was introduced to Cees. Although vital sign metrics have long been used to monitor a horse’s overall health, Cees promotes heart rate measurement as a highly effective training tool for improving performance. He is renowned for adeptly utilizing analytics to customize training programs that measure true capacity and emphasize adequate recovery time.
THE SOLUTION: REAL-TIME DATA
Eliane and Adelante began their work with Cees, using an electronic heart monitor to record Adelante’s heart rate during training. Cees analyzed the data to establish the ‘normal’ heart rate for Adelante and, with a baseline set, subsequent heart rate data clearly highlighted how Adelante responded to the workouts. Eliane relied on Cees’ advice to make adjustments to her training routines and found that using a monitor reinforced her natural instincts with Adelante.
While excited by the new training techniques, Eliane was frustrated by the lack of real-time data. She wanted to make training adjustments from the saddle without waiting for Cees’ post-ride analysis and felt confident that an equine performance tracker with in-ride feedback had great potential in the equine community.
In the summer of 2016, Kate and Laxmi joined Eliane to determine the commercial viability of her vision and, later that fall, Hylofit became a reality. Now the team is forging ahead to develop a smarter training tool for equestrians; one that improves performance, prevents injury and thereby improves the overall wellbeing of horse and rider.