Having been involved with horses all my life I knew I was missing something that my horses were trying to tell me on a regular basis. Deciding to go on the foundation course completley changed my whole life. Kelly and her team have helped me (without knowing it) regain my confidence and also shown me what I want to gain out of life, both with my horses and personally.
The first day of the course I felt sick with nerves, the thought of having to talk in front of people that I didn't know etc was a big thing for me. But as so many of the people above have put it lasted all of about 10mins. The instuctors were (are) amazing, no questions is silly and they always have time for you.
Anyone who is looking at doing any of the courses go for it, it will be one of the best things you do.
I am doing my next weekend course soon and I can't wait. Thank you to all at IH for showing me what I want to achieve from life.
Kelly little did i know that The week in july 04 doing my five course would change my live forever ! Not only learning to understand horses better but how it built my confidence up for every challange i face in life . Over the last 3 years i've learn't so much on each course and plus you learn from other students as well . I could carry on writing but i would just repeat what everyone else as said :-)
Hi everyone, well here goes, when i first was on the way to Hartsop farm, yes i was very nervous but also excited, but as soon as i met everyone you seem too settle in really well and working with the horses and being taught all these methods was amazing, and you really enjoy it so much you foget about the nervousness espcially with join up, but as soon as i got into the round pen with a lovely pony called 'jake' you feel like your in a different world. i wish it lasted longer! all the teachers are so lovely and patient and really help you through things you find difficult to understand and its ok to make mistakes sometimes. I've just been on the Feeding nutrition, and horse as an athlete, and will be back for the 'Horse Physcology weekend' CANT WAIT!! ;D
well, my experience began with a drive from Scotland alone, 5 weeks after passing my driving test, god bless sat nav!!! So having used all my boldness to get there, it was a good job it was so easy to fit into the whole experience! I was on the five dayer in May 2006 and the only downpoint was coming home to try to explain to those not quite on the wavelength how huge the whole experience was. What was so inspiring was seeing people from all walks of life transforming in front of your eyes and achieving far more than they dared expect. It was such an indulgence to have so many friendly and like minded people around for a whole week to talk about all those horsey things that tend to bore your nearest and dearest!!!
For me, I know i will be back, when the pennies allow! But I am now determined to keep plugging away to achieve what i want, equine and otherwise and although I still have moments of self doubt, they are usually followed by more useful thought and self confidence.
I have since taken a 'problem' horse on loan with view to buy, and this has been an amazing experience even in tricky times, as I now have the confidence to stick to my guns when required yet ask for advice and be confident that my gut feelings mean something.
What I am trying to say, is that apart from the technical tools you learn on the course, the major and unexpected benefit is the increase in your confidence in yourself and your ability to make good decisions for the benefit of horses and your life.
Post by heatherdaisy on Sept 10, 2007 21:12:08 GMT 1
Hi Would anyone that has ever been on an IH course like to put their experiences down on this thread? I admit to a bit of an 'agenda' - I get so many nice emails and I wouldn't use them without permission so it would be nice if regular DGers found the time to put about their experiences here. I know so many people are nervous when they first arrive and something like this could help them (Or not! Just depends I guess!!!) Many thanks Kelly x
Hi, I was nervous before I went on the foundation course. Would everyone be more experienced than me? Would they be friendly? Would I find it difficult? Would I make an idiot of myself? My fears were unfounded. All were friendly, with a great sense of humour. The quality of teaching was excellent (I am an experienced teacher) and I was never made to feel I had made an idiot of myself even if I might have done! I learnt so much and am keen to learn more. People were really patient if things got difficult. It was a fantastic experience and it was good to be with people which have a similar outlook on the best way to work with horses. I can't wait to go on more courses now.
I have done lots of the courses and always have a fantastic time and learn lots. The patience of the trainers is amazing and the student's openess to share experieces and learn new things is thrilling to be part of. And the training has changed my life - I've given up a full time job and started my own business just so that I have time to focus on being with horses. And I would like to become an RA - eventually.
But reading the thread has made me realise that I may actually be the only person who comes away from each course feeling intimidated and foolish for thinking that I will ever have the skill to succeed - talk about putting walls in front of yourself!!
I guess I'd better get hold of Perfect Confidence and start reading
And I wished it could have been longer as there is sooooo much to learn! (So a huge THANK YOU to the I.H. Crew for everything!)
My first memory is driving up and down the road about 5 times trying to spot Hartsop Farm (Please repaint the sign on the gate: it's small and not easily seen from the road from within a moving car!) Once I arrived (and found out where the loo and the kettle were...) all my worries over, "Ohmigods, what am I doing here, I don't even own a horse!" were quickly put to rest as there were riders and owners from all walks of life and varying degrees of experience, some horse owners, some not. And seeing as we were all there to learn about the same things and of the same mind, everyone got along famously! Which is good coz I'm quite shy...
What I wanted to gain from the week was to put into practice everything I could which I have read in Monty and Kelly's books or seen at demos. As someone who has taken up riding late (I'll forget about the 2 years of riding I did as a kid for now...) I feel it's very important for me to get it RIGHT esp. as one day, I want to own a horse and have a good relationship with him/her. It's in my nature to do things properly or not at all!
Animals fascinate me, so learning to communicate and work with them using their own language is the most amazing and wonderful earning curve I've ever been on.
Now, when I ride the horses at my riding school, I'm putting into practice what I've learned and becoming more and more eager to learn yet MORE! AS I learn why horses do what and when, I better understand when Something Happens, why and what to do (or not to do!) about it.
I've never believed that brute force or violence should EVER be used to force an animal to do what's required, so finding (and learning) Another Way is exactly what I was looking for...
The best bits on the course?
(Well, apart from the wonderful staff, helpers, horses and fellow course members!)
a. The plentiful supply of tea (Very important: No tea, no workee...) b. The weather (SUMMER FINALLY ARRIIIIIIIVED!!!!!!) c. Finding out why my neck seizes up (An old-but-bad injury to my left knee - I fell over a German Shepherd and ripped my ligaments...) d. Finding out how much the aforementioned leg injury affects my riding (I was wondering why horses always drift to the right when I ride 'em: I'm 'protecting' my left knee so I lean into my right stirrup and then loose the left.) Must work on that... e. Doing my first few 'proper' Join-Ups and beaming from ear to ear. OK, we were 'let loose' on schoolmaster horses, but a horse is still a horse and the language of Equus is global. f. Long-lining down country lanes with Gromit (HUGE fun!!) g. And lastly, doing a spur(!!)-of-the-moment change of plan on the Friday when Kelly gave us the option of learning how to help de-sensitise horses to - in this case - The Horse Eating Plastic Bag Monster with a lovely horse called Socks (Sox?). I have to say, he had me quietly trying to suppress a tear and a sniffle; he strikes me as such a sweet little soul that has had a tough time in his life and to see him go from a horse that visibly 'had a wiggins' when faced with a bamboo cane (with another lady on the course first and then me) to a horse who could bear having both a cane and a plastic bag rubbed all over him was just awesome. (I know that word is overused, but it really was awesome!) So if anyone at Hartsop Farm, etc reads this, I'd love to know where he goes and what happens to him. Dunno why, but that little fella touched my heart quite deeply, bless him! If I had the space (and the appropriate knowledge!!) to hand, I'd have gladly taken him home with me, but I doubt he'd fit in my car...
So yeah, I learned a lot, laughed a whole heap, drank more tea than I can ever remember and had a DAMNED fine time. I'll be doing more I.H. course as-and-when...
can anyone tell me how long it would take to become an RA? its just that i retire soon and i will only be 48 years old and i have been around horses (shared on loan etc) most of my life and currently studying an equine degree in welfare and behaviour but my goal is to be a RA and i am attending the psychology course in November this year and plan to look at doing more courses before i retire in 2009 but wondered how long it all takes so that i give myslef enough time. i appreciate that hands on experince will also be the key once i get started. Any advice would be gratefully received. thanks
I attended all my stage one courses and enjoyed everyone of them. I learnt so much from them and have gone on to helping others within my freelance instructing using IH methods. I am always very proud in saying what I learnt and achieved form these brilliant people who lead me onto the right path and I have never looked back. I would and do recomend people to go along and see for themselves just how good the work is and hope that more people would use these courses to better themselves and show others a much better and kinder way to enjoy there horses. Everyone is so lovely, I really didn't want to leave!!! Thankyou Kelly and all the team and hope to see you soon. Karen xx
Hi everyone, I went to the 5 day introductory course in June 07. This was my first IH course and it was the best experience I have ever had. I was a bit nervous driving down on my own from Lincolnshire to Whitney, but I did it with girl power!! Everyone made me feel welcome and Linda and Kelly were inspirational. I made two good new friends who I keep in touch with, both called Nicky!! And the group I was with were fantastic!! However, be warned all the horses at Hartsop Farm are lovable - to a point I came home with one!!! So 'Yes' to my course members Tilly did come home with me and has settled in very well with the rest of my herd (Tilly, Milly & Rosie). Thanks for a fantastic week - looking forward to my next course. PS my husband has said you are not allowed to let me come home with anymore horses xxx ;D
Post by theoldgreymare on Oct 24, 2007 19:53:31 GMT 1
Doing the third course in October 96 was a huge undertaking for me - I had just lost my job, I had a really bad back, and money was tight, but I would not have missed it for all the world! The studying was hard for one so long out of school and computer illiterate, but one day with Monty was enough for me to know that I had found my reason in life, and some-one who believed that horses can be trained without resorting to the whip. The three months flew by, and with the fantastic support of my family, huge input from all the other students and you and the other staff, I came out stronger, more confident and sure that I too could make a difference.
11 years on, I have seen many changes, and many Monty "imitators", some good some not so good, BUT, the one thing that Monty did, and is still doing, was to raise awareness and to get people to question how they dealt with horses and how to view the situation from the horse's point of view. If his legacy is to be that he did make a difference because of that outlook then he can be a very proud man.
With your help with the demos, books, and your easy stlye of communication, (and of course, Pie) the message is getting across to so many people who have doubted in the past, and are now converts to the kinder way of treating horses.
I think my contribution will not have been so much with the horses themselves, but in getting people to recongnise the need for a change in attitude, to look at other methods, to not expect a quick turn round, but to win the horse's trust, and form a bond, a lasting relationship a harmonious understanding with each party both giving and taking for mutual benefit. As long as I am able, I am committed to promoting Monty's methods for the good of all horses.
I done the 5 day foundation course in June '04 and psychology in January'05. I found the courses fantastic, the 5 day course was a real eye-opener. I am not good with people so was VERY scared and nervous but everyone was really friendly and the students all wanted to learn. In all the previous posts everything I want to say has been said so I'd like to take this opportunity to give my heartfelt thanks to Linda Ruffle.She told me if I only believed in myself more I'd achieve more, just because some-one has had horses from day dot doesn't mean they are better. I had to remove my horse from a yard quickly as the YO threatened to hurt him. My horse didn't load. I'd tried everything before, even getting some-one who said "this was what she done". He never loaded for her either. Any way I'd done the Perfect Manners exercises and with Linda's voice in my ear telling me I could do it I got him to load and moved him to safety. So Linda you won't remember me but you changed my way of thinking. Best money I ever spent!!!
I took myself and my horse (Solstice) on the 5 Day Foundation Course a few years ago now, I think it was around 2005?
Having broken down in my friends lorry on the inside lane of the main road into Swindon on a blind corner and having had the police close the dual carriageway whilst we transferred our horses (mine a very bad loader) from our lorry to the rescue lorry, I was very very glad to see Hartsop Farm!!!!
I have to say I thought the course was absolutely fantastic, I felt like a sponge soaking up as much information as I could. Kelly along with her team were so incredibly knowledgable and so good at imparting that knowledge. Ian Vandenburgh worked so well with Solsti teaching him how to back up at a touch and getting himself round the U shaped poles, which was pretty impressive as Ian pointed out that to begin with it was like backing up a very large lump of wood!
Kelly worked wonders with Solsti who had been violently abused in his previous home and was very scared of enclosed spaces, she had him loading himself in the trailer in fifteen minutes, something I had struggled with for hours upon hours.
Learning about Join-Up was mind blowing to actually be able to communicate with my horse using his own language was something I could never of dreamed of, especially as I had been floundering so badly in trying to break down the barriers between myself and my horse.
A truly life enhancing course for both me and my horse!
Hi I chose to do a weeks course with my Forest Pony (forest bred - not stud). My reason was not because he was naughty, he is actually a really sweet natured boy with no particular "issues", I wanted to improve his was of going & bending without me on his back to complicate matters, I wanted to learn how to long line. My pony has one hip slightly higher than the other, due to lack of training in his past he allways pulled from the front (he didn't have much of a bottom then), head in the air and rode bent to the right (hip and habbit!). Yes I had his back checked and its fine. Being able to watch from the ground and control his movement has been a massive benefit to both of us. He now bends, comes onto the bit when asked and now has a lovely big strong bottom!. All I have to do now is straighten myself up more!. I am pleased to say that I got a lot more than just long lining lessons, I have allways been a believer in asking "why" if your horse doesn't do as you wish, but to open up the rest of the body language is a whole new thing. My pony is a lot more respectfull to me, and our relationship has definately gone from strength to strenght with both of us being far more confident in our own ability and each others. So, you don't need to have a problem with your horse/pony as the reason to do a course, the benefit is still there.