I recently had the pleasure of this horses company for a weekend clinic. With Joyce Mulder.
Toto, is a wonderful, horse, he recently had a year off work due to what his owner called a nervous breakdown. He is very sensitive, he will get ‘stuck’ and not move or just walk backwards with worry.
I had no expectations about what we might achieve. My main focus was to connect with him and help him continue to regain his lost spirit.
I think because I wanted bring out his true nature before wanting any fancy moves, he gave me way more than I had hoped for.
I bring Toto into this post as he showed me clearly even if we only have limited time with a horse and no prior relationship with them, they know when our intentions are pure, when we help them express their true nature, they know it feels good, just as it does for us when we free ourselves from the expectations of others, and allow our true nature to emerge.
The grand masters of classical riding, seem to all be sending us the same message, find the true nature of your horse and work with that before anything else.But how do we do that?
William Cavendish Duke of Newcastle, was the first to explain all lateral movements,(1592-1676) He also said..”art must always follow nature and never oppose it”
Francois Robichon de la Gueriniere (1688-1751) said,” knowledge of what is natural in a horse is one of the cornerstones of the art of riding and all horsemen should make it a main point of study.”
There are many more wonderful quotes, but how do we understand the nature of the horse? I think there are many different ways , methods and great teachers out there, you have to find the one that suits you and your horse, I was lucky to have my wonderful horse Noo noo come into my life and tell me there was so much I didn’t know about the nature of horses. Now I feel that Noons and I know every cell in each others body, we know what the other one is thinking and feeling most of the time.I understand much better about how her body works and how to help her be fit,strong, and supple thanks to straightness training and Joyce. I also understand the nature of her and see her true self, through working with her at liberty. I have studied with and continue to learn from Carolyn Resnick, this has also lead me to explore, many things I would not have done before and to trust that the grand dressage masters had a point! I feel much closer to nature and my own true nature, I also want to see the true nature of the horse in front of me. Above all I will always observe and listen to the needs of that horse to the best of my ability, I continue to learn from and have a wonderful time with my horses and those I am lucky enough to meet, like Toto. I have lots of links on my links page to things that have helped me develop myself and my horses. As we enjoy finding our true nature.