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What is Compassionate Horsemanship

Horse Spirit Healing Concepts

These HSH concepts have been taught to me by my horses who also inspire me to share with those who feel a resonance with their message. These are not universal terms found elsewhere in the horse trainers world. They are developed out of my experience and perspective, shared with me by the horses in my life and comes straight from my horse's mouth!…

Horses have led me on this path of experiencing and coaching the Compassionate Horsemanship way. It is horse's compassionate teaching that has influenced me most, in all areas of my life. If you feel the magnetic pull of a horse's heart to your own, I will do my best, to share in inadequate words, a snippet of what they would like you to know.

Also learn more about what I term the three Relationships with Horse; Free Liberty, Stewardship and Leadership and the energy exchanges we can share; Free Liberty, EquiEnergy and EquiTouch.

On Compassionate Horsemanship

I like my the Compassionate Partnership even better, because a real leader is also a partner with those she leads. Compassionate Horsemanship (CH) is understanding the natural and universal ways that horses communicate, intake information, understand, and react. It's an understanding of their natural individual and herd dynamics and how they interact and live in the natural world together as a herd. When we observe horses, it is clear how they communicate and who's top horse and the herd hierarchy. It's clear that they live understanding and relying on the leadership role. It is clear they are comfortable when they know where they stand within that role and the herd hierarchy as a whole. It is clear that they understand and naturally respond to intentional physical and energetic pressures (directives) and the release of the pressure (communication) of those directives.

In Compassionate Horsemanship we take this understanding, of natural horse roles and herd dynamics, and step into Leadership in an intentional, consistent and compassionate way. As compassionate leaders, we prioritize understanding and appreciation of each unique horse's temperament and how his life experiences and training impact his understanding, learning and connection with humans.

Compassionate Horsemanship affects our Leadership and Stewardship Relationships with horse. In these roles we interact with horse in a directive way, asking him to perform in a safe, respectful and considerate manner. In Compassionate Horsemanship we direct using cues our horses understand with a patient consistent approach. Our goal is to come into understanding and agreement with consideration of our horses temperament and personal development.

When humans enter into an interactive relationship with horse, the horse naturally wants to know who’s the leader and is it them. When a horse is confident in where he stands, he relaxes into his role. When the horses relationship role is uncertain, either with a human or another horse, the inconsistency and ‘discussion’ can be stressful, confusing, dangerous or problem causing as the horse vacillates in his leadership behavior, in order to establish where you each stand in the relationship. He has to keep testing to figure it out, until it IS actually figured out. Testing the boundaries is a natural way for horses to find out their leadership role (and kids too)! Horses desire clarity and assurance of who IS the leader or director, whenever a human asks to work with him.

When we step into a directive relationship (Leadership) with a horse, it is imperative, for safety, that our horse looks to us for leadership and support. If our horse is calling the shots, their decisions and reactions can put us, our horse and everyone around us in possible danger. If a horse determines that he is the leader, he considers himself the king of the two of us As king (Leader), he expects to direct us about and assumes it’s obvious that we should know to make way for the king and follow his lead and not the other way around! This is not bad horse behavior. It's natural behavior for the herd leader to expect such a response from his underlings! And the underlings, in turn, naturally expect to be respectful of their king. Everyone is happy and comfortable, because they know where they stand. Right!?

Yep, sure are! IF we humans DO step into this natural leadership role with our horse. THEN everyone’s happy, both human and horse are confident and safe to enjoy their adventures together - with human riding the horse and not the other way around! For if we don’t step into leadership, we are literally handing over the reins to our horse.

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