Celebrating 10 years of
I remember being 9 years old, picking up my brown, split reined bridle, and heading out across the pasture of my family’s ranch in Colorado.
I would walk first to the lone tree on the hill that rose left of the house. It was a vantage point that I could see where Scotch, aged 32 at the time, was grazing with the rest of the herd.
Once I saw him, I was off, scrambling down the rocks or picking my way across the bog.
He would greet me with a whinny, seemingly happy to see me despite the mess that would follow of me awkwardly putting on his bridle and then needing at a minimum 5-6 attempts to leap to his back.
Bareback, we explored as far as he would carry me.
Scotch was my friend but also my freedom and independence.
I ride because I love the feel of the wind in my face, of an expanse in front of me calling to be galloped across.
I ride because I love the feeling when I think about going faster or turning, and the horse responds, as though we are in a dance, attuned to the smallest of each other’s movements.
I started teaching riding over 20 years ago, because I was just so passionate about the feeling of being on the back of a horse and I wanted to share that feeling and that passion.
Truth be told, the only reason I really study all the nuances of riding – how to sit and move in the best possible way, the posture and alignment and balance, the training of dressage and development of the horse – is because these are all the things that make that gallop across an oat grass covered field so effortless.
These are the things that make it possible to drop the reins, because my horse has the self-carriage and the balance to navigate a tricky terrain with no input from me.
I ride for connection, for adventure, for the energy of being astride a powerful horse, for the stillness and presence it brings to my mind, and for the continual journey of self-improvement that horses bring to my life.
My vision for HorseClass, and for our community here, is this...
…to embrace the journey, the learning about posture, balance, leg yields, and how riding that correct shoulder in makes the horse strong and supple – but to equally embrace the greater journey, the life lessons that our horses teach us, the way they shape us, if we soften enough to allow it, into better human beings.
And to have fun, to pursue the kind of adventure and challenge that lights you up, that inspires you, that makes every difficult day worthwhile.
I started HorseClass partly for myself.
I wanted to learn more.
By working closely with those I considered to be the best at what they did with horses – Wendy Murdoch in changing riders bodies and balance, Angelo Telatin in creating confident jumpers, Patrick King in translating classical training for all riders, Andrea Wady in building relationship with a horse, Heidi Blackman in bringing the wisdom of yoga to becoming fit and strong, to name a few.
I am leaning into why I love riding – getting lost with a horse in big open spaces.
HorseClass will continue, and I hope to be sitting somewhere writing to you with something wiser to say in another 10 years.
But for now, as I write this after the first 10 years, I am simply filled with gratitude.
As you read this, I will be somewhere in Mongolia, hopefully not too lost, but doing what I love and what I know my soul is here for – pursuing adventure with horses.
I am riding to support Equitarian Initiative – you can learn more and join in the support here.
As another way of giving back, for the 10 days I am riding in the Mongol Derby, you can join any HorseClass program for 20% off and we will be giving an additional 10% to Equitarian Initiative.
We also have several new learning pathways available, where you can join key courses in our curriculum to guide you along in your learning journey.
Join any of these pathways and get a free check in call with me, to plan and guide your journey.
Ok – let’s go ride!