Training Philosophy

My Training Philosophy

My philosophy is very similar for every horse I work with whether it’s a young horse, an older horse or an unhandled horse.

The Horse Factor

When training and interacting with a horse I start by establishing a willing partnership that starts on the ground and is then transferred to ridden work. I believe in establishing healthy boundaries, mutual understanding and safety. Then building each horse’s trust, confidence and acceptance in our world. I also want to help each horse find deep levels of engagement, connection and relaxation through all of our training and interactions.

I believe in building a deep and fulfilling relationship and connection with every horse I work with. Leadership is important but when I think of leadership I think of what we as humans are bringing to the relationship with our horse. As an effective leader I set clear boundaries and rules in a compassionate and caring way. I have very clear and consistent communication that doesn’t change from moment to moment or day to day. I am also very aware of my emotions and how they affect my horse. I believe you have to learn how to regulate your own emotions before you can expect your horse to manage and regulate their emotions.

I believe in both negative reinforcement; pressure and release and also positive reinforcement of; touch, scratches and sometimes food treats. Both negative and positive reinforcement have their place when used correctly.

I understand that every horse is an individual and all horses have different levels of sensitivity. I want every horse to become a confident learner.

I teach them to always look for the open door through offering constant releases of pressure with clear and consistent commination cues.

When training and interacting with horses I never want to take them past their window of tolerance, that way they always stay confident in the learning process.

When you can communicate at a refined and intuitive level you are able to tune into how each horse feels at each given time.

You are able to recognize the most subtle changes in the horse’s body language and your releases become micro-releases.

This creates a huge amount of desire to please in the horse and a deep level of engagement and connection can be fostered.

Horse Training is an overlapping and ever flowing process. Training and interacting with horses is a non-linear process, it doesn’t progress or develop smoothly from one stage to the next in a logical way. Instead, it will develop in different areas at the same time.

My goal is to teach people lots of different techniques to improve their range of skill sets while at the same time maintaining a strong focus on putting the relationship with their horse first.

I want to teach you how to achieve great levels of engagement, connection and relaxation with your horse. I also believe true horsemanship is about personal growth and to be really good with horses we need to learn a lot about ourselves and how our mental state, attitude, emotions and our internal and external energy affects our horse and the dynamic of the relationship we have with our horse.

If I can keep working on myself; growing, reflecting and learning, I know my relationship with my horse will get stronger and stronger, so this brings me to the Human Factor.

The Human Factor

I now know that true horsemanship is more about actually ‘being’ than it is about ‘doing’.

I think of the ‘being’ as a state that is reflective of being calm, being present, being centered, being aware of your breathing and what’s going on in your body, being soft, being emotionally regulated and being aware of your energy levels.

‘Being’ is how we are in our mental state, attitude, emotions and intentions.

However, I do believe people need to learn about the ‘doing’ often before the ‘being’ and slowing combine the two.

I think of the ‘doing’ as all the practical techniques of how to do certain exercises and tasks so you keep expanding your skill sets.

However if you just focus on learning techniques and developing skill sets without any focus on the ’being’ you will miss the personal growth and building a relationship with your horse based off a deep connection.

If you can learn to combine the way of ‘being’ with the ‘doing’ your journey will become much more fulfilling and joyful for both you and your horse.

I hope to meet you on the inside of the Video Library