Dec 14th, 2012 by Carolyn Resnick
“In all domestic horses there is a wild horse spirit.
In all wild horses there is a domestic horse spirit.”
This is the message that I bring to the equestrian world … to help us understand, connect and train the true nature of horses.
Marchador, our ambassador to the language of horses.
The beautiful Mangalarga Marchador.
The weather this year for the Beyond the Waterhole Rituals clinic was beautiful, warm, and sunny for the first week, however for the last day we had a down pour. The class is now over and I want to share some highlights from our experiences. The class of 13 was amazing and life time friendships formed. At the half way point we went to Kedra Holderman’s ranch, my current working student, where we worked with her amazing herd of five mustangs ranging in age from one to five. Because the five horses live together in harmony the class was able to work with them together as a herd.
When we arrived I thought that we would be able to share territory with them safely for an hour. We could not do this because the herd was way to forward and a bit aggressive, so I had to come up with another plan. I went it alone. My first objective became keeping the horses away from me and it was a big task to accomplish but quickly I made my point clear with Kedra’s rooster apron she had fashioned just for that occasion. The herd was not at all intimidated by a whip or reed but with the apron they would move quickly away which became my safety. Little by little I got the respect I needed by shooing them with the apron. I worked between shooing them away and then making it up to them by giving treats. Then I focused on giving treats to the horses that would stay way to create a safe space to share with them. I then chose to invite a student in with me and work with each person until I got the whole class in the arena. Then we worked on moving the herd around with all of us in the arena; working together as a team. We all had fun including the horses! It was neat to see that a group gives an individual the ability to choose when they wanted to take an active roll. We were able to send the horses at a run and bring them to a halt easily from the carrots the horses were all looking to receive.
Order in the Herd!
Introducing the class to the herd one by one – before the dance.
The Mustang Dance.
It is important that when entering an area to work with horses you make sure that no horses are close to you. Getting in with a horse that is close to you at a fence makes it hard to shooo the horse away. A horse may take offense from you trying to shoo them away, and may try to kick “you” away instead. The way to enter an arena with a group of horses is to send the horse away so you are safe to enter or find a spot were you can enter that there are no horses in the immediate area. This way you have enough distance between you and the horses to keep your safe. Also you will have plenty of room to make a big statement with your body language that would keep the horses respectful of your personal space. Once a horse is close up to you it is harder to drive them way.
Elodie Juggles: Send away the bay and keep the palomino in place with body language, intent and the rooster apron. “It’s all about intent and feel”
Honey, my new teaching horse, was such a star and a good teacher because of his many ways of responding to the method. Every one got a chance to work with him when he was soft and willing to when he was resistant. Understanding this resistance is important when learning my method so you know what to do when you get home to your own horses. A student needs to experience a horse when he is responding perfectly as well as to experience what to do with a horse when they do not. Honey enjoyed the clinic. He got out alot of Nos and Yeses in with an abundance of treats.
Karen & Honey working out the details.
Christin & Honey Sharing Territory in the softer moments.
Linda always knew where to be in the center of the wheel to influence the performance of her horse.
Diane and her boots dancing with Honey.
Diane Companion Walking
Diane with Honey pausing in collection, which we call “pretty”.
Marchador started the beginning of the clinic Sharing Territory and doing what he likes doing best, he finished with the carrot game and go trot and come up. Maestro got to be in the clinic too! He taught the class how to move a horse around in rhythm with ease. The class also learnt the nuances of how advanced the gas pedal can be through working with Maestro.
Maestro, a Fire Spirit melting hearts. The misunderstood fire energy now understood.
I must add that Lad also made an appearance stealing the show. All of the horses made an appearance and played a part as a teaching aid but Honey did most of the work and got a song written about him! Marja and Jannie got together on the last night and surprised me with a song about Honey to the tune of “Money” by Abba. I told Honey about it and he was very pleased.
I also want to share with you a couple of responses to the written questions I asked my students during the morning meditations that were very moving to me… When asked “What is the purpose of Liberty Training horses?” … Christin answered: “Training horses at Liberty allows the horse to retain his autonomy, his wild and free heart and honors his place as teacher as he reflects all the ways we are, as we show him all the ways he is.” Kamille wrote “It allows for the willingness and the seeking and the relationship to blossom into the beauty that the two souls ultimately are searching for.”
There was many new horse and human sightings in the clinic and I am sure more to come when everyone returns home. I want to thank everyone in the class and my volunteers for supporting me in my work and wanting my program to grow while helping me move my teachings forward. Without all of your help it would not be possible for me to bring the next chapter in how to connect with horses as friends and companions and learning a new approach to Dressage without bits.
Training in the Round Pen – 3 speeds walk/trot/canter
Misty Morning Meditations with Marchador
Nia Groove Dance Class with Sharolyn
Double Lining: Starting a horse on a circle through relaxation
Lessons at the Hillside Arena with Carolyn
First I want to thank Sharolyn Wandzura, Teddie Ziegler, Kedra Holderman & her mother & their herd of 5 mustangs, Carol Caddes, Mena Canonico (great photos!), Shelly Martin and her great Black Wing essence remedies.
Teddie and Kedra chopped 35lbs of carrots!
I also want to thank the entire class for coming to California, for without you the joy would be only a dream. Here is a photo of our amazing group of helpers and Liberty Training Students: Anna-Karin Hägglund, Bonnie Beresford, Christin Staszesky Harper, Diane Morgan, Elodie Belz, Erica Dixon, Jannie Smit, Kamille Hottinger, Karen Frame, Leanne Tindal, Linda Holland, Lynn Punturiere, Marja van Run.
Thank you Anna-Karin for your vision of a school for children that nurtures their soul while growing their empathy for nature, animals and each other.
Thank you Bonnie for staying with me for all these years and enjoying the journey with your horses and the energy you brought to all of us.
Thank you Christin, it was so easy to coach you in my method, you have a natural way about you that the horses trusted.
Thank you Diane, I am looking forward to our continued journey together to find the strength within.
Thank you Elodie for your way with horses and your study of animal behavior and videos.
Thank you Erica for being you and bringing your up lifting energy to me and understanding my method as deeply as you do.
Thank you Jannie for your journey in dressage with horses with my method and sharing your artistic expression and thank you for making the fairy tale book I do so cherish.
Thank you Kamille, it was a pleasure to see your natural leadership style and personal power to shape the behavior of your horses when you felt the fear that you did.
Thank you Leanne for being a true student of the horse and your friendship and reaching past what you know to continue to stay a true student of the horse.
Thank you Lyn, I’m so excited about the possibilities of your leadership programs and wanting to share a new kind of leadership in the corporate world.
Thank you Linda for the bond we developed together. I so enjoyed how you knew where your center needs to be to influence a horse.
Thank you Karen, it was wonderful to work with you on your journey of connecting to the true nature of horses.
Thank you Marja for being a horse dancer extraordinaire and your beautiful videos and being a growing close friend. I hope the journey to my ranch was well worth it to you.
There will be more photos and videos on The Carolyn Resnick Method Facebook page – come join us!!
Would love to hear from my class about your experiences here on this blog so we can relive the wonderful memories and stay connected.
Have a great weekend and watch out for new horse and human sightings,