Hannah has described EXACTLY what I am trying to do with Fast Track to Brilliant Riding – empower people and horses for their own wonderful, wonderful journey.
When Corey received Hannah Rivard’s entry for the GoldStar scholarship competition, she couldn’t wait even five minutes before giving this girl a scholarship. “I don’t want this girl to wait one minute to start this course” she said.
I recently asked Hannah for an update on how she is going with her course and here is her reply.
Hannah: A year ago, I couldn’t even catch my horse.
It wasn’t for any lack of effort on my part—I had studied nearly every trainer I could find, tried dozens of methods, for days, weeks, months, years, and yet still my goal of bridleless dressage and transcendent connection with my horse was so far off that I almost felt like giving up. If I couldn’t even catch my horse, what business did I have searching for heaven on earth with my mare, Maia?
I knew it had to be something so simple it was profound, the sort of door in the wardrobe that would lead me to Narnia—I just had to find it.
And then I met Jenny Pearce—embarked on her program through the generosity of the Gold Star Scholarship—and began glimpsing the beauty of pure connection with horses that I’d only dreamed of.
As of today, I’m on Lesson 62 in Jenny’s online program, and the transformation is astounding. Just last month, I finished my 10-day “bridleless experiment” where I rode Maia only bridleless (not even a neckrope or stick) for 10 days in a row to see if long-term bridleless was possible—and every day was better than the last. Just yesterday, Maiawent trotting away from me after being ground tied, and far from her instantly becoming near uncatchable, I was instantly able to call her back to me without hesitation.
How did this happen? Jenny’s program gave me two incredible gifts. First, the lesson that pursuing joy, happiness, lightness, and comfort with horses at all times is good and is beautiful. So often we’re told to push through, to fight it out, that frustration and fear are normal with horses, and I didn’t want to live like that—that was not the horsemanship I longed for. In fact, I distinctly remember when Jenny said that if I felt even the slightest bit uncomfortable, I didn’t have to even enter the paddock—I didn’t even have to look at the paddock! I was so relieved that I began to cry; I had no idea how much tension I had built up about horses.
The second gift was enabling me to trust myself, to continue to study and learn always, of course, but to break down the boxes I’d kept myself in regarding what was “right” or “wrong” with horses. We’ve all heard them—the endless rules of do this, don’t do that, try this, but never, ever do that—and I was trying to remember so many rules in becoming a “Good Horse Trainer” that I was choking my own creativity and grace with horses. By teaching me to truly listen to myself, my comfort zone, and the understanding I already had and also that which was intuitive inside me, I was able to approach Maia as a living being, a friend, and a mystery to be explored, not a problem to be solved.
In the end, it wasn’t that Jenny’s wonderful program has taught me everything I need to know about horses, but instead, it has done something much greater: it has helped me to find for myself what I need to know. As I said before, I was looking for the door to Narnia—the element that would open me to the beautiful world I knew existed with horses—the peace, joy, lightness, success—and let me then explore my world with my horse.
And that is an incredible gift.
Me: Ahhh Hannah you have nailed it!