This video is me with my most current partner, Duck. We have spent the last 7 years together. She is an Appaloosa, and appears frequently throughout Lovehorsebackriding.com in tutorials, when I share my experiences, and in photos. She has quite a character and is the most people loving horse I have ever had the honor to partner with! She has been a blessing in my life and challenged me to better myself as a person, horsewoman, and trainer.
I've loved horses ever since I could remember. I played " show jumping horse" in the backyard of my suburban home with broomsticks for "jumps". I galloped through my field of jumps doing perfect "flying changes" and loving every minute.
I am sure you can relate if you are visiting Lovehorsebackriding.com. Horses are not just a hobby, they are a passion, and a lifestyle! One that many people never grow out of! I didn't! You can always tell the kids with the horse "bug". They are the ones like me flying around their backyard whinnying like a horse and begging their parents for just one lesson. I know I did.
I started riding lessons when I was 8 years old, but had wanted to ride since the first time I passed a barn at the age of 5 on my way to dance lessons! For three years I begged my mom for riding lessons every time we drove by that barn that touted "English Horsebackriding Lessons." After 3 years, my mom relented and agreed that I could take riding lessons that summer.
Fast forward 2-3 summers of lessons and I still couldn't get enough. I searched for a barn where I could lease a horse at by the month and found a stable about 15 miles from my house etched in a canyon of paradise.
I leased a horse that summer, and by the age of 12 I was working at that stables after school and on weekends doing just about everything horse related; mucking stalls, guiding trail rides, feeding and doctoring horses and within the next year teaching lessons.
Meanwhile back in suburbia at home I was busy running a babysitting business. When I wasn't at the barn I was babysitting and earning money for my first horse. My parents couldn't afford a horse, and they told me that if I wanted one I'd have to pay for it and pay for it's other expenses too like board and shoes.
I worked and worked and finally saved up money for a project horse. Her name was Rosy. She was a little gray Arabian mare that had been starved and as a result she was very small, barely 13 hands. She was a great little mare to start out with and she taught me so much about training horses, as she was my first training project.
I spent all of my teen years at the stable in paradise doing everything from jumping lessons to pack trips. I outgrew Rosy and found the most beautiful black mustang with a striking white blaze whom I named Kira. She was a solid girl, and we spent the next almost 14 years together constantly. She wasn't broke to ride and was barely halter broke when I bought her, so that is where we started. She was still so people shy when I bought her that she took 3 hours to catch each time and 3 hours or more to load on a trailer.
It was with Kira that I realized how little I really knew about what made horses "tick". She was stubborn to say the least, and I lacked the skills I really needed to gain her trust. This experience brought me into my natural horsemanship journey. I have spent the past twelve years studying natural horsemanship through mainly Parelli, but have studied other trainers such as Clinton Anderson, Buck Branaman, Ray Hunt, and Tom Dorrance.
I bring as much as I can of that mindset to the
pages of Lovehorsebackriding.com, and hope that you want the same synchronized relationship for
yourself with your horses. If you haven't experienced that sort of trust and communication, I would challenge you to seek it out, because there is simply nothing in this world like it!
All in all I
have over 25 years experience riding and training horses. I have started
colts, taught beginning/intermediate riding lessons and worked with riding/behavioral issues in horses for clients. I
have done tons of trail riding (one of my favorite pastimes),
particpated in many natural horsemanship clinics and camps, packed with horses, done English 4-H,
Competitive Trail Riding, Hunter/Jumpers, and dabbled in a a little bit
of eventing for a brief time. I have volunteered in the equine community, done some horse rescue, and am also a certified Equine Massage Therapist.
I am also a wife and mother to two boys, (who don't want anything to do with horses for the most part, and that is OK). I also enjoy yoga, rock climbing, and running.
I am far from a perfect rider and trainer, and I seek to learn as much as I can from the ultimate teacher, the horse as well as from those much more skilled than I. One of my biggest goals growing up was to ride bareback and bridle less, and I am happy to say I have achieved that goal! I always wanted the parternship of my horse, not to force him, and I felt like this was a great test of that relationship, and it is!
I brought Lovehorsebackriding.com to fruition a few years ago as a way to share what I have gained in knowledge about horses with others. I want you to avoid some of the training pitfalls I had and get started on the right hoof!
I hope you enjoy the site and please feel free
to share your ideas, comments, and experiences with me by contacting me. Be sure to join me on Google Plus, and you can also follow Lovehorsebackriding.com on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and by joining my newsletter below.
Lisa Rask & Duck