I started riding when I was 3 years old, tearing around fields on the back of my Shetland pony, which grew my love of horses, and began my foundation and pursuit of my horse-related goals. When old enough to join 4-H, I learned first-hand the benefits of youth clubs for providing knowledge, teamwork, and building friendships with horses in common! At eleven years old, I trained my first horse, a beautiful Arabian gelding. He became a wonderful partner...one whom I successfully competed for many years.
After obtaining my Associates in Business Administration, I relocated to Belgium for 3 years for intense training in Dressage and equine care. During this time, I primarily trained with Karin Donckers, an international event rider and trainer and member of the Belgian Equestrian Team. I helped Karin prepare all of her horses for international competitions, including Gormley, at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. (Ibritt and I pictured above in a separate event) Also while in Belgium, I graduated from the Vlaamse Trainersschool and am Internationally Certified to teach horses and riders.
Upon returning to the United States, I moved to Georgia for continuing education and experience. While there, I trained with Jules Anderson and Suzanne King, instructors at Teamwork Dressage. I gained a lot of knowledge, and am very grateful for their expertise and guidance in helping me learn the ropes about competitions in the United States.
Positivity and Well-being
Through my fantastic trainers, education and experience, I have learned what it takes to physically build and train equine partners in a positive step-by-step process, which ensures each horse has a great foundation to build on to reach the higher levels. Another thing I firmly believe in, is that in order to make a great equine athlete, your horse must also be mentally content with the work that is being requested of him. Unfortunately, I have seen many talented horses become seriously impaired due to improper training; cribbing, weaving, ulcers, and loss of appetite, etc., and all are advanced symptoms of unhappiness. It is my working methodology to listen, develop an understanding of each horse's needs, and create a tailored, individualized training program for each equine friend.
DRESSAGE IS NOT JUST FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN DRESSAGE! Dressage is for anyone who wants to gain a better understanding of how to effectively communicate with his or her horse. I effectively help each rider gain a better understanding of what to do, how to do it, and explain the why to do it for their horse. For example: I am able to help hunter/jumpers with avoiding "run-outs", and how to properly prepare for the jumps...after all, jumping is actually dressage, but with jumps in between desired movements!
Many different types of horses have thrived under my care. I gladly work with any breed, gender, age, or disposition. I have successfully retaught many horses that owners and trainers have given up on. I understand how important your equestrian partner is to you, and I genuinely want to help both of you to be happy and successful!
CERTIFIED by VLAAMSE TRAINERSCHOOL (BELGIUM)
INTERNATIONAL GROUP for QUALIFICATION IN TRAINING HORSE & RIDER EQUESTRIAN (BELGIUM)
INTERNATIONAL PASSPORT # 001922
USDF BRONZE MEDALIST
TEACHING BEGINNERS THROUGH PRIX. ST. GEORGE