We connect and interact with horses in a new way.
In hopes of reaching as many people as possible with a new message about horses, relationship, and connection we are excited to work together in a collaboration centered on the question: “what if……”
Liberty horse training is a way of being with horses in which the horse is allowed to have a voice in the conversation about their reality. They are allowed to have a say in what happens to their bodies, their surroundings, and how the human interacts with them. They are allowed to say no.
These basic allowances are far from the norm in mainstream horse training. The human is allowed as well, to have a say, in what is okay and not okay. Which, asks the human to get in touch with feelings, anxiety, frustration, love, and connection. The question of: “How can we ever really say yes, without being able to say no” is the focal point of liberty training for both the horse and human.
We think awareness, is a vital aspect of living a well balanced life. Horses give us a glimpse into what balance could look like, due to their natures, and physiological wiring.
Because they are herd and prey animals they want to bond to something. Staying together is life or death to them. We can learn from the way they interact with us, when they have a voice, in a way that can bring clarity to our own inner world.
Horses offer to teach us about our discomfort with stillness, our busyness, our need for control, our fear, our unwillingness to set boundaries, just by being in their presence. When offered a connection and relationship horses are willing to fold us into the herd so to speak, giving us the gift of being.
Horses live in a hierarchical and spacial world. Horses who do not elect you as your leader will not take direction from you, are hard to catch, turn and walk away. They are not interested in being with a lower ranking being, because that is not safe for them. Instead, a horse that has said yes, will come running when called off of grass. Will happily companion walk with you, whoa, turn, be still.
Our own inner world, and the work we are willing to do on our relationship with the horses can allow for connection to grow. It takes time, it takes patience, it takes our own work to be able to be still and listen to wonder and to provide for a being as magnificent and big as a horse.
There cannot be safety with horses without boundaries. Because, it is important in all relationships to have them, being with horses is not different. We need to be able to ask a horse to leave when it is time. To take a step back, or five in order to feel safe, we get to decide as an equal how the relationship looks for us.
Taking the time it takes, to get to know a horse is the long road. It is a relationship not based on what the horse can do for us, instead, who we are together. This difference allows for deep reflection, joy, and a true relationship with the truly special animal we call horse.
Horses give us a glimpse into what balance could look like, due to their natures, and physiological wiring. Horses offer to teach us about our discomfort with stillness, our busyness, our need for control, our fear, our unwillingness to set boundaries, just by being in their presence. When offered a connection and relationship horses are willing to fold us into the herd so to speak, giving us the gift of being.
Horses offer to teach us about our discomfort with stillness, our busyness, our need for control, our fear, our unwillingness to set boundaries, just by being in their presence.
A horse that has said yes, will come running when called off of grass. Will happily companion walk with you, whoa, turn, be still. Our own inner world, and the work we are willing to do on our relationship with the horses can allow for connection to grow. It takes time, it takes patience, and the willingness to do own work to be able to be still and listen to provide for a being as magnificent and big as a horse.
I took my horse Stoney to meet Robin Gates, a liberty horse trainer in Northern California many years ago. She changed my life. My life with horses, and everyother facet of it. She taught me about liberty with horses, and all the elements that go into connection, being and boundaries.
I want to share the path I have found with Robin's help.
I love horses and being better to them and with them.
I believe we can learn compassionate presence from horses. Their zen power and capacity to sense and feel our internal state makes them the best non-judgemental teacher of our own state of being.
If we feel courageous enough we can allow our vulnerabilities of being reflected be our best teacher.
It is my biggest joy to be able to provide opportunities to learn about ourselves through compassionate and powerful horse experiences.
Founder of the Park City Horse Experience and the Equine Assisted learning program.
In our programs we partner with horses for the exploration of self- awareness, connection to self & nature, and to gain new perspectives on life.
A gentle, powerful and avaliable herd of horses who have spent time learning and teaching liberty.
By learning the elements of relationship with horses we will be able to connect and interact with horses in a new way. With creativity, stillness and boundaries the horse and human will have the opportunity to get comfortable with each other and able to experience the bond. Because the horse is always free to choose we are able to create a space that is enjoyable and exciting always using their language as cues for us, while building trust and confidence. To be with horses without force allows us to really see what is meaningful for the horse, and their engagement in our games is a yes that is truthful and genuine.
Cultivating mindfulness is the key to connection to ourselves and our environment.
Mindfulness meditation is unique in that it is not directed toward getting us to be different from how we already are. Instead, it helps us become aware of what is already true moment by moment. We could say that it teaches us how to be unconditionally present; that is, it helps us be present with whatever is happening, no matter what it is. Only by being present we can begin to truly connect to others including horses.
After discovering what is our current state we explore connection with the herd. As we interact we maintain the focus in inner awareness as we observe the mirror horses present to us.
Horses have more mirror neurons in its brain than dogs, cats, or even humans, “which cause them to experience and reflect the emotional state of those in their territories. Mirror neurons enable our companion critters to get where we’re coming from, often better than we do.” This practice demands physical and emotional engagement.
By learning about balance in relationships we can help the horse become at ease with us and their environment. Each interaction is an opportunity to think creatively about how this particular connection could be stronger. We adjust as we learn from the body language of the horse: our energy, our intentions, and our requests. Each moment with the horse is new and exciting and we get to be part of that journey by learning the language of the horse.
Horses are either doing nothing-or doing something together. By becoming students of this dynamic can learn when it is time to ask for more energy, or when to stand in the nothingness of being. By using movement, we are tapping into a horses nature and connecting with them in a way that is natural and easily understood for them. Mirror and matching is behavior often seen while with the herd, it is a sign of trust and being present. By exploring moving with horses, we get to learn more about of own bodies and how present we are or are not.
As a group we will reflect on the learnings and discoveries of our experiences, taking what we learn back into our everyday life. The metaphors and the embodiment of the experience will stay with you forever!