In the southeast corner of the Evasion Equestian Centre in Fleurimont, there is a room full of ribbons that offer a glimpse of Lyne Joly’s competitive past. Lining the walls, they are a testament to the athlete and veteran horse-trainer’s decades in the world of dressage. Below the ribbons, there is an electric wheelchair. “Without that chair I wouldn’t be able to do anything here,” said Joly, pointing out the rough terrain around the stable and the old building’s uneven floors. “I couldn’t do it with just my hands.” Although she now has the use of her arms, the former competitive athlete was paralyzed from the neck down in January of 2017 when she was thrown from a young horse she was working with. “I fell on my head and broke my neck,” Joly said, explaining that in an instant she went from being in the upper levels of competitive riding to having nearly no mobility at all. Although work and rehabilitation has allowed her to regain the use of her arms, she explained that she has no abdominal control at all and a weak grip. “It is very sad,” she said. “Everything was so easy before.” Although the results of her accident were devastating to her life and career, the rider said that the consistent support of her family and longtime boyfriend were enough to see her back in the saddle the following May. “It is like when you put an egg on a table and it rolls all over the place,” Joly said, explaining that even with a special adapted saddle that helps to hold her in place, she has very little of the balance that is essential to effectively ride a horse. “It is very hard.” If getting back on a horse has been hard, that says nothing of the challenge Joly has set for herself. “My goal is to do the Paralympic Games,” she said, noting that she was once on the long list for the Canadian Olympic Team. “If I don’t get there in four years, it will be in eight.” See full story in the Wednesday, April 25th edition of The Record.