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LESSONS, TRAINING AND CLINICS

I am based out of Langley, BC and I offer lessons and clinics both locally and out of town.

Many riders are unaware that they are using far too much effort when riding and training their horses. And even when they acknowledge that they are using a lot of effort, they simply don't know that there is an alternative. That alternative is to re-sensitize the horse to light aids so that the rider can do less and achieve more through correct, well-timed requests. Not only is riding more enjoyable for the rider and the horse, but the horse's soundness will be enhanced as well.

RIDING, TRAINING & HORSEMANSHIP

My emphasis is on fun for both horse and rider using gentle but effective techniques.

The basics I teach are highly appropriate for all horses, whatever style of riding they will eventually be used for, whether English or Western, dressage, reining, or even trail riding. I also offer saddlefitting and hoof balance consultations to enhance your horse's ability to remain sounder longer. Private lessons preferred.

RIDING
Riding and undersaddle training are based on French and Portuguese classical riding and, for those who are interested, includes high school and the Spanish airs. The French and Portuguese schools are characterized by light and effective aids that encourage full expression from the horse. Although I have experience and work with all breeds, I have a particular interest in Spanish and Portuguese horses, and enjoy working with sensitive horses.

GROUND TRAINING
I also offer groundwork sessions to teach feel and to establish mutual, two-way communication which enhances undersaddle safety, communication and cooperation. This makes for a very safe interaction for both horse and handler that affects all aspects of handling from easy leading, longeing, cooperation during farrier and veterinary visits, to trailer loading and classical work in hand and under saddle.

CLICKER TRAINING
To round out the general curriculum, I also incorporate clicker training for those who are interested. Not only is this a fun way to teach your horse tricks, but more importantly it can help the horse understand precisely the response you are seeking during normal training, whether on the longe or under saddle, for example when you are teaching him to lengthen his stride or to collect. It enhances the horse's ability to learn, in addition to developing the handler's/rider's timing, feel, and awareness. Clicker training can greatly decrease learning time while significantly increasing understanding, and fits in quite seamlessly with my riding and groundwork techniques.

SADDLEFITTING EVALUATIONS
I offer private or group saddlefitting sessions, during which I evaluate the fit of the saddle to your horse and suggest ways to optimize fit for greatest comfort and range of motion. I also teach you how to evaluate this for yourself, as saddlefit should be assessed frequently.

MOVEMENT AND ASYMMETRY EVALUATIONS
I offer private or group sessions to identify movement and asymmetry irregularities that are affecting your horse's performance. There are several very common patterns to these and I make recommendations to help the rider assist the horse in overcoming these problems. This may take the form of riding exercises, bodywork of some kind, or re-establishing correct hoof balance.

HOOF BALANCE CONSULTATIONS
Many horses live with inappropriate hoof balance. This may be the result of injury, poor trimming/shoeing practices, poor riding habits, or just poor posture, among other things. I assess hoof balance and make recommendations with a view to restoring correct balance and movement for that individual horse, rather than corrective measures for the sake of aesthetics or an artificial standard of movement.

SENSE METHOD
I am a certified SENSE Method practitioner for horses, dogs and other companion animals. This very gentle and subtle form of hands-on somatic (movement) education is used for rehabilitation or prevention of injuries. SENSE gently addresses the nervous system, offering an educational experience for the horse that assists him in reorganizing his body to allow greater range and freedom of movement. It is particularly useful for horses in regular training to prevent tight muscles due to repetitive exercise, for horses recovering from injury or movement problems, or for horses with behavioral, attitude or sensitivity problems. It is also extremely beneficial for arthritic horses. For more information on this gentle but effective approach, visit the
SENSE website.

CLICK HERE for more on my riding philosophy.

Email : rafalet2ride@yahoo.ca

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Last updated October 29, 2001

2000-2002 K. Woollatt. All rights reserved