dressage


Three years ago, when I purchased Tonka, I did so thinking that he and I would be trail partners, and for the first year, walking through the woods was what we did. His previous owner told me that Tonka was good alone or with company and that proved true. The trails […]

The Inadvertent GO!


I’m auditing the United State Dressage Federation’s L Judges Program. It’s an exacting course that leads to certification for those who want to be the arbiters of dressage tests in this country. A couple of weekends ago a few dozen of us watched and critiqued eight hours of video clips […]

The Perfect Horse


It was not quite three years ago that I brought Tonka home. He’d had a wonderful owner who taught him the basics, but she hadn’t had the time to do much with him. Mostly, they explored the woods and fields in Maine. That was okay with me. I’d told everyone I’m never […]

End Of The Show Year



After yesterday’s long post, I thought I’d do something fun and quick. But be forewarned – there’s a link that has the potential to take up a lot of your time! Dover Saddlery is having their yearly photo contest and Steve entered three images. Being an engineer, the site itself […]

Horse Photos


We’ve all had them – the riding instructors that yell, harangue and nag. In 1975 I went to riding school in England. Gerry was one of my instructors. He was tough and wiry and had legs like nutcrackers. He could sit on anything. He pushed me hard to improve. Modern day […]

Teaching Riding Without Yelling


I recently wrote about the zen of hand-grazing a horse. It’s a centering activity for you and contributes to your relationship with your horse and their emotional well-being (as well as physical health if it’s the only source of fresh grass that your horse has.)   I failed to mention something. […]

Wear Boots



The work that I do with animals uses, what I call, the clicker perspective. It’s not, however, always clicker training per se. Much of the time I don’t use the clicker – a sharp sound that marks the moment the animal has done the right thing, which is then followed by a […]

Starting From a Safe Place


Years ago there was a nasty person in my life. She would call to harangue my husband and leave vitriolic messages for me. This was in the days before iPhones, when the telephone was mounted on the wall of the kitchen. I’d hear the ring, or pass by and see that […]

The Ring. Conditioned Punisher?


The type of riding that I compete in, dressage, is rather formal. What one wears is dictated by show rules and tradition. Garb is muted and includes dark jackets, white shirts and breeches, and tall and polished black boots. None of that I mind so much, in fact I like how it looks, […]

Braids