Through the Eyes of One Viewer: The Intuitive Riding Experience

 

If you asked me what I believed a good horseman to be when I was ten, I would have said someone who could ride their horse in a halter.  If you’d asked me when I was sixteen, I would have said someone who could ride a high-performance horse in a halter, mostly because I’d never seen that.  If you asked when I was twenty, I would have said someone who is gentle and who can get the most out their horse without resulting to physical abuse.  If you’d asked me when I was thirty, I would have said first of all I’m twenty-eight, and someone who loves each horse with all they have even if they aren’t life-long companions, and someone who can interact and train with body language rather than with aids.  And if you asked me today, after attending the Intuitive Riding Clinic, I would say someone who can work with horses gently and by thinking about it from the horse’s perspective.  Someone who treats the horse like an equal and who has dialogue with them rather than dictating to them.  Someone who knows how to show the horse what we are asking for intuitively.  Someone who reads their eyes, as well as their bodies and hearts, and who knows how to help them work through things.  I would say, someone like Anna Twinney.

      I have a unique perspective from which to say such things because very luckily, I get to work for Anna.  Sometimes that actually means you guys reading this get to see her more than I do because she gives everything to the horses and their people, including all her time and dedication.  And it’s not just horses, because she works with animals of all types and locations during her consulting hours.  In short, Anna has dedicated her life to the betterment of the lives of thousands and thousands of horses and their people, and countless animals around the globe.  I like to think of her as a bridge connector; two halves are reaching towards each other, but they just can’t quite find that level ground on which to meet and become whole.  Anna is like the human subconscious in that way; ever driving those people and horses they love towards that seemingly elusive wholeness.  That level ground on which to connect is made available to everyone in every place Anna goes, and both the people and the horses can feel it.
       What is an “Intuitive Riding Clinic,” my neighbor asked.  “I’m not entirely sure what to expect,” I told her.  I knew what we were going to cover I just didn’t know how it would be covered.  How each topic would be broached.  I knew there would be riding, and I had the privilege to audit, so I wondered if that might change the experience.  Turns out observation is exactly what was needed.  In a group of the most sweet and loving individuals I may have ever met in one place, we learned how to communicate with the horses using our eyes and our bodies to help show them what we were requesting.  We learned different ways to touch them that help calm the nervous system and get their attention.   We discussed what it is to dialogue with a horse and to see them as an equal, to partner with them instead of dominating them.  We learned how to approach difficult obstacles in the arena that would be harder to calmly conquer for most horses, and how to move through them with little to no resistance on the horse’s part. We learned how to help the horses understand our bodies and how we move in the world as humans by using their language to explain it to them.  We learned about holistic health and how to determine what is needed in the horse’s diet.  We learned about intuitively connecting with the horse to help them see what we were asking of them.  We learned about animal communication and the amazing clarity it can afford us when working through issues with a horse. We learned how we can view horse as teacher instead of the other way around.  We learned about so many things, too many more to count or to list here.  But very importantly, and I think very different from most clinics, we learned the most about ourselves and how we interact with the world: how do we approach problems in the world?  Quickly? In haste? With due caution? Or with excessive caution and fear?  Do we blow things out of proportion?  Are we patient when learning, especially with ourselves?  Do we give it our all, or do we easily give up and get frustrated?  Do we refuse to attempt things because we are afraid?  Do we place circumstances outside of us that aren’t really there?  Do we make time for ourselves?  Do we move thoughtfully throughout the world?  Do we have balance in our lives?  Do we reach out to the world softly?  Do we focus on the problem instead of the solution?  Are there things we can do for ourselves that we have been putting off until we have help we don’t really need?  Are we looking for the answers out there and the means by which to come to the solutions, or are we stuck being afraid to walk through the gate?  Are we trusting what we feel and know to be right and true?  Are we truly feeling what we feel?
       I can only say that to sum up and conclude the Intuitive Riding Clinic experience would be missing the point,  because these aren’t learnings that complete your education, but rather they are learnings that start your re-education back in the correct direction.  These are things you can take with you and apply as often as you like and with however much gusto you so desire.  They are a terrific start to the new conversation.  You don’t need a horse to apply what you learned here.  It does make it a little more fun, though.  So I won’t sum it up, but in ten years I will write another summation for a clinic and it will say, “my actual understanding of horses all started with an Intuitive Riding Clinic with Anna Twinney, and it changed my whole life.”
        Love always to a tremendous mentor and her fantastic husband, both of whom have guided me more even in this short period of time than any people with whom I have ever worked.  I do have the job a thousand people would love to have.  I know because I see the emails.
Reflection by Lacey Knight, Administrative Assistant at Reach Out to Horses.
Advertisements

One thought on “Through the Eyes of One Viewer: The Intuitive Riding Experience

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s