Feel the Connection ...
PRIVATE MINDFUL HORSEMANSHIP RETREATS
Spend a few hours shadowing our head trainer as she works on her rehabilitation cases. You will learn about equine behavior, cognitive development for horses, energetic dialogue, and how to build high functioning relationships with horses. These retreats prep you for working with the horses yourself under the direct supervision and guidance of our highly experienced equine behavior specialist.
"I am very new to the world of horses, and when I started taking riding lessons, I knew there was a LOT more going on that I wanted to understand about connection and communication with horses before I tried riding again. So much of what I found, even here in California, were pressure-based forms of interaction based on dominance that did not feel good to me.
Through a google search, I landed on Heather's page all about relationship-based horsemanship, and reading her blog posts was really clicking and making so much sense to me. When we spoke on the phone and she said "the horse's back is a sacred space that has to be earned through respect", I knew this was the teacher I was looking for. We talked about the options of creating a personalized retreat to learn more of this style of attunement and energetic dialogue, and I booked my trip out to upstate New York!
I loved beginning with the Mindfulness Horse Whispering mini retreat, and then I had 4 days of private one-on-one lessons with Heather. Heather met me right where I was at in terms of my level of experience, knowledge, and confidence with horses and horsemanship. I learned so much from her and the horses, and my confidence really grew!
I look forward to returning again next year and building on everything I learned in this first private retreat, and I feel more clear and confident about my next steps to put as much of what I learned while with Heather into practice here at a local horse rescue and with friends' horses. This was a wonderful experience that I highly recommend to anyone! Especially if your desire is to learn how to build meaningful connections of respect with horses."
- Danielle S.
Relationship-Based Horsemanship is the practice of working with horses in ways that prioritize the quality of the horse-human relationship over all else. We train for connection and depth in the partnership rather than for performance-related objectives.
This sort of horsemanship is necessary for most behavioral rehabilitation cases. We want the horse to want to remain relaxed and enjoy the learning process throughout his education. Do achieve this, we need to meet the horse halfway and become better horsemen. We need to offer him choices and remain empathetic to his emotional tolerance for the work.
𝖳𝗁𝖾 𝗉𝖾𝗋𝖿𝗈𝗋𝗆𝖺𝗇𝖼𝖾 𝗐𝗂𝗅𝗅 𝖼𝗈𝗆𝖾 𝗋𝖾𝗀𝖺𝗋𝖽𝗅𝖾𝗌𝗌, 𝖻𝗎𝗍 𝗐𝗁𝖾𝗇 𝗒𝗈𝗎 𝗉𝗎𝗍 𝗍𝗁𝖾 𝗋𝖾𝗅𝖺𝗍𝗂𝗈𝗇𝗌𝗁𝗂𝗉 𝖿𝗂𝗋𝗌𝗍 𝗒𝗈𝗎 𝖼𝗋𝖾𝖺𝗍𝖾 𝖺𝗇 𝖺𝗎𝗍𝗁𝖾𝗇𝗍𝗂𝖼 𝗉𝖺𝗋𝗍𝗇𝖾𝗋𝗌𝗁𝗂𝗉 𝗍𝗁𝖺𝗍 𝗐𝗂𝗅𝗅 𝗎𝗅𝗍𝗂𝗆𝖺𝗍𝖾𝗅𝗒 𝗈𝗎𝗍𝗌𝗁𝗂𝗇𝖾 𝖺𝗇𝗒𝗍𝗁𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝗒𝗈𝗎 𝖼𝗈𝗎𝗅𝖽 𝗁𝖺𝗏𝖾 𝖺𝖼𝗁𝗂𝖾𝗏𝖾𝖽 𝗈𝗍𝗁𝖾𝗋𝗐𝗂𝗌𝖾.
Horses give us a practical reason to remain mindful. They are large, sensitive flight and prey animals that are acutely aware of their surroundings. In order to work with them safely, and without desensitizing them, we must remain connected to what they connect to. This means we need to generate higher levels of awareness than is typically necessary for modern human survival.
Relationship-based horsemanship requires us to become attuned to what horses are attuned to. We need to learn how to read them and develop the ability to synchronize with them in their neutral state. And then to initiate effective communication with them, we need to BECOME WHAT they are attuned to.
The mindfulness state that one must sustain when practicing the art of horse whispering can help us develop control of our compulsions, regulate our emotions, and learn how to monitor and manage the effects we have on the world around us. In order to communicate effectively with horses without causing them fear, we must remain receptive to our senses and in control of our energy. This level of awareness draws us into a mindfulness state. Check out our blog for more information on how horses can help us with our own personal development and growth.