The newsletter is a little late this month as I’m away doing clinics.
I’ve just completed clinics in Mackay and Canberra and as always, loving working with such dedicated riders. Mackay had me putting my thinking cap on, as one rider Anita Evers, who a lot of you have met in the building of Jane workshops in WA, was struggling to tune into her body since having a concussion a month ago.
We gave her a facia ‘wake up’ down her sides, front and back so she could feel her skin and edges, but she still was struggling with feeling her feet. “Ah ha” I thought, my magic bag had just the thing to get her in touch with her feet and we pulled off her boots and socks. By placing the spiky sausage shaped instruments of torture under her foot on the stirrups we regained her sense of feel to her feet. This gave her the final touch of regaining the full feel of her body again.
Canberra is a lovely place to coach too, the indoor venue at Sherony Park is amazing with the owners always happy to see us and bending over backwards to accommodate any need. Nothing is too much trouble, and it’s delightful to see them always improving and loving their property of which they are so proud of. Holding clinics there works for them and brings in an income and we are appreciative of their welcoming us.
The big star of this clinic at Canberra was a lady who was very crooked in the saddle. She knew she had a big problem which was affecting her horse and not helping him, as he has muscle wastage on his right side, and excess muscle on the left side near his shoulder. Due to him now also developing head shaking syndrome she brought another lovely mare which her coach loaned her. This mare was rounder than her own horse so it really highlighted her asymmetrical issues as her saddle from her own horse slid to the right on the mare.
Most of the auditors believed her stirrups were not level, but in fact they were level. This wonderful determined lady worked so hard to level her seat bones and put her weight into the stirrups. We had to change her saddle, as over the months / years the padding had become uneven leaving her an impossible task, and fortunately another rider loaned her a saddle for the clinic. She went that evening to Big W and bought two sets of scales on my request and stood on them in an on-horse position, one foot on each scale. Looking forwards and making her weight even into each foot, then looked down to see what the dials showed. To her surprise she had 5kg more weight into her right side.
The rope you see on her right side was to allow me to pull her into place, and then as I released it she had to learn to feel how to stay there. Over the two days she became more and more level and on day two had the same reading on the scales left to right. A number of techniques were used to make this incredible change, including spiky balls, soft Franklin balls, boards engaged on the right only and a rope around her hips to pull her into place.
If it wasn’t for her incredible determination, focus and wanting to change for her horse’s sake, it would never have been achieved. Well done Leanne Davis, it was great to see all the other riders cheer you at the end of the clinic. Sorry you needed a Zimmer frame the next day to walk.
Thank you Anita Evers, Annie Maren Benton and Sally Letts for all your organisation of the clinics and hosting me in Mackay and Canberra.
Late in October I spent two days participating the Belinda Bolsenbrook Masterclass clinic. My mind has gone over again and again the information presented to us at this clinic. The depth of knowledge and the eye for detail is mind blowing. Each day we started with a theory lesson which went into wonderful detail and explanations.
This clinic had a big focus on the hyoid apparatus. Belinda’s main belief is training the horse with correct bio-mechanic function to enable the horse to have longevity into old age. With careful, precise training, noticing the smallest detail and correcting the tiniest of misalignment, you can have a happy, healthy horse that can carry the rider into his older years.
Without this development you will possibly encounter issues of kissing spine and joint problems. The lack of this development is often seen in an emotional fall-out, as the horse can’t cope with the imbalances. With Heidi we explored the release of the hyoid which affects the horse from the tongue right through their ventral line, and any issue or blockage will stop the horse being able to carry the rider round and through. Every muscle in the horse’s body eventually connects to the hyoid.
What was incredible with Heidi is her sensitivity to the slightest pressure around her head and its impact on the tongue, hyoid and the rest of her body. In the first clinic earlier in the year, we removed her flash noseband. In this clinic my whole, very loose, noseband was removed!
OMG I had to get over that belief that a horse doesn’t look good, is missing something without a noseband – the horror and amusement! However, the feel of her little by little experimenting with letting go, releasing the blockages through her body and being able to come over her back and in self carriage, was incredible.
I will spend the next few months building on encouraging her to let go of the tension and building her strength so she can carry me easily in good posture for longer periods. My home-work is set, and when Belinda returns at the end of March 2020 I hope to have it established and a flowing energy throughout her body developing and being maintained for longer periods.
I am enjoying a few days break in Canberra with Sally Letts which is just as well as when I finished my last clinic, I lost my voice. My next stop is New Zealand and I’ll update you all on that in my next newsletter. Don’t forget our next clinics and lessons are as follows:
7th-8th Nov Hawkes Bay Private lessons
9-10th Nov Hawkes Bay Body and Mind Mastery with Jenifer Abdelnoor and myself
13th-14th Nov Northlands Body Mastery
16th – 17th Nov Waimauku Body Mastery
6th-7th Dec Oakford WA
14th-15th Dec Albany WA