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April 30, 2017
Learning from Joe Wolter
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I spent some time over this weekend watching Joe Wolter teach. I dodn't know much about him except that he had spent time with Tom and Bill Dorrance as well as Ray Hunt. He had just a wonderful way of putting things - very kind and thinking and feeling for the horse. He came out with some really wonderful sayings but my favourite was this one: Don't make it happen, let it happen.

So how do you do this? His approach was to set up a feel for a horse and allow them to puzzle solve and learn where the solution it. I very much like this because there is less chance for the horse to panic or get frustrated because he has been rushed to find the solution. This is such a powerful thing to learn - it is basically patience and being prepared to repeat and repeat until a horse finds the solution. Joe was also happy to get on a variety of horses and the changes in those horses really were quote profound. Such an unassuming person, no ego or need to be a showman. His approach is one that I will try and take on board moving forwards.

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April 22, 2017
It all starts with catching
Yesterday I visited a lady who could not catch her horse. It hadn't really been handled or haltered in probably over a year, maybe more, and certainly wasn't going to change his opinion just because I walked in ;-) After observing him for a while, it became clear that he would allow his owner to touch him a little bit but then he would have to leave. So rather than focus on catching him, our goal was to prove to him that his owner understood his body language and acted accordingly, which was to back off rather than follow him, and to bring her energy right down so he had no reason to leave. Over the course of the session, I pointed out certain behaviours and points where the horse started to make a change and we saw him start to come to her rather than the other way round. By the end of the session, this proud and sensitive horse was following her around the yard - such a humbling sight to witness. She currently only has 'permission' to touch about 25% of his body. Once she can do this all over and then again while holding a rope, will she earn his trust to put a halter on.

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April 20, 2017
The power of focus
'You need to focus more!' 'Use the power of focus' What does this actually mean? For me, its having a plan. This could be in the moment (short term), something that I want to get done over a few sessions (medium term) or something to aim for this year (long term). We may also have dreams, which don't actually have a set time line. So lets go back to short term. This is where the horse is all the time - in the moment. So that is where we have to be too, when we are with them. Here's a little video of me testing whether Shaun could follow my focus. Could I ride him with just a thought? Had to use my legs a couple of times but pleased with his response, Here's the video: https://youtu.be/83BATDUjMKM

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April 15, 2017
April Monthly Morning Workshop

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Lovely morning at my Monthly Morning Workshop. Clients took advantage of the flexible pricing depending on how long they stayed - some got 1:1 time with me. The next event is 14th May 10am-1pm 

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April 11, 2017
Morning monthly workshops
There are still spaces on my April morning workshop. Each workshop will have a theme but will also allow the flexibility to address any issues that may arise. Workshop can look at either riding or groundwork issues, or a mixture of the two. Maximum of 6 horses. No stallions.

Prices per horse: 1 hr - £25 - 2 hrs - £35 - 3 hrs - £45 

Spectators welcome £10. Refreshments provided. £25 non-refundable deposit secures place. Full payment due 7 days before workshop. Call 07765 203012 for more information. If there is high demand for places, an afternoon workshop will be added.

Dates:

Saturday 15th April 2017

Sunday 14th May 2017

Saturday 17th June 2017

Saturday 15th July 2017

Sunday 20th August 2017

Saturday 16th September 2017

Saturday 21st October 2017 (weather/ground permitting) 

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April 3, 2017
Loading success story
Just had a lovely email from a client who I have been helping with loading for about a month. The horse had had a few bad experiences with people trying various things to get him in. Taking the time to show him that he could find his way into and out of the trailer has transformed his mindset. Today his very happy owners took him to a Pony Club rally and back without any fuss. He loaded beautifully at both ends. He also reloaded after getting out both times, just to check that he was still ok. Very pleased for all concerned

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April 2, 2017
March Morning Monthly Workshop

The first Morning Monthly Workshop at Flax Bourton was a great success! Four students attended and looked at how to help their horses become more relaxed both in the environment and by using different obstacles. Both horses and humans made some great changes and everyone raved about my home made chocolate brownies! The next workshop is on Saturday 15th April. Contact me  to book your place.

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