My Dream "Spanish Riding School" -The school will be open to everyone interested in my method by offering tours and an opportunity for an hour’s lesson in horse training. This school will accommodate short programs of horse training and Sharing Territory with horses all the way up to programs of learning that would extend out to a lifetime student program. The school’s purpose is to create excellent horsemen and horsewomen through training horses at Liberty; where the horse has free will to learn, dance or even to stay in the pasture and graze in a family herd environment, if that is what the horse would prefer to do. The focus of the school will be to learn herd behavior as it relates to understanding the individual horse and the society that is natural to horses.
The Environment - The format of the training program is set up as a group environment for both students and horses. Teams of students will work together training one horse as well as working with several horses at the same time. This style of education offers a togetherness that is natural to horses and nurturing to humans. This way people learn how to enjoy working together and how to support the common cause.
Beautiful Surroundings - The school is right next to an open pasture of at least 200 acres of ups and downs with a couple of ponds and trees for shade; a topography that is interesting and supports other wildlife, places for observation and a feeling of paradise from a horse’s point of view with great riding trails.
We will have a library with a fireplace to read books and work on computers. There will be a small kitchen in the library as well. We also will have an organic garden for horses and humans for health and enjoyment.
Curriculum - Riding lessons will start after the horses have all eaten and digested their breakfast and after their morning naps around 10:00am. We will have lunge lessons for developing a seat in unity through the gaits. We will focus on how to influence the gaits, three speeds of walk, trot and canter and changing the gaits from the seat alone without loosing enthusiasm, rhythm, connection, unity and harmony. At this time there will also be classes for Liberty training, single lining, Uberstriechen and schooling in the dinner and dancing rooms on development of self carriage in collection, influencing correct posture and expression, connection and relaxation in place. There will be music most often as a training aid in the classrooms. I have found that music is beneficial to improving student’s leadership and approach so the aids are received with the full attention of the horse and that the horse would perform to the best of his ability with aids as light as a fly’s touch. I call this "equus tact".
A person attending the school will immediately start a curriculum with morning meditations along with journaling between 7:00am and 8:00am. Breakfast in the dining hall will be served between 8:00am and 9:00am. Between 9:00am and 10:00am there will be grooming lessons and Sharing Territory in preparation for the classes that follow. Entry level classes will be held from 10:00am to 12:00 noon, advanced classes will be held in the afternoons.
Beginning students rotate around these morning classes so they have a chance to participate in each class. Entry level students are invited to watch the advanced Dressage classes in the afternoon. As students advance, becoming more proficient in riding without reins on the lunge line, Liberty Training, Single Lining, Uberstriechen, and the Dinner & Dancing Program, they will begin to instruct what they have newly learned. After that, they would move on to the more advanced afternoon classes of the higher level programs in riding and training. There would then be a pause before early dinner.
Togetherness in Tranquility- In the evening there will be meditations in the field or body work on horses and humans and then for the late night people there will be a campfire gathering each night for relaxation and connection to the source energy and deepening the bond with one another. The purpose of the fireside gathering is to enhance connections in the company of others and to enrich well being to get a good night’s rest. Periodically there will be special events held at the fire side. Horses are invited to all events at the school including the dining halls and libraries.
Watch out for new horse and human sightings and may the horse be with you.