Archive » March 26, 2009
By Pat Murphy, Contributing Writer
As Santa Ynez Valley’s fame grows, the region that probably has more different breeds of horses than any other in America, other positive aspects come forth. Talented horsemen are drawn here to share their skills through the presentation of clinics.
One of the most popular clinics is called Light Hands Horsemanship. It will return to the Santa Ynez Valley the weekend of May 29 – 31. Called the ultimate “how to” horsemanship clinic, it celebrates its third year at Intrepid Farms, here in the valley.
Once again accomplished horsemen will demonstrate their training techniques and exercises that can be used on horses at all levels of their abilities.
This clinic is a rare opportunity for all horsemen to observe the complete training of the horse from A to Z. The clinicians start colts from their first ride and show how they would reach being a finished horse. Horses will first be schooled in beginning work, then on to the introductory stages.
They proceed to the advanced work, which is followed by the finishing work.
As these exceptional horsemen work with the horses through the various stages of training, viewers will receive in-depth instructions on the proper training of the performance horse.
Clinic leaders say Light Hands Horsemanship is a new and unique concept when it comes to horsemanship education and its presentation. During the lectures and demonstrations, the viewers are enriched by the knowledge and experience of five outstanding and well-respected horsemen. They are taken on a journey from the early learning of the horse through the training of the advanced horse. Each of the horsemen has a different style and technique, but they all agree and come together on one point — lightness. Lightness is their cornerstone.
“Light Hands Horsemanship is probably the most comprehensive two-day clinic in America, a fabulous learning experience,” said famed Texas horseman Jack Brainard after attending last year’s event.
This year, the group of horsemen who will be sharing their expertise is impressive and include Robert Miller, DVM; Jon Ensign; Lester Buckley; Eitan Beth-Halachmy; and Brainard. They are all dedicated horsemen on a constant quest to improve the life of horse and rider through study and education. Not only will training techniques be shared, but there will be lots of wisdom and humor that can only come with time and experience.
On the important concept of lightness, Ensign says, “Light Hands offer the ability to reach the horse’s body through his mind; it’s a greeting of sorts, a handshake of the heart.”
“When a horse is taught to balance himself and not rely on the rider’s hands to hold him in frame, lightness occurs,” says Beth-Halachmy of Cowboy Dressage fame. “The Light Hands concept represents the highest achievement between horse and rider.”
This clinic will once again have the well-known author and host Rick Lamb of “The Horse Show,” on RFD-TV, to serve as emcee.
The Light Hands Horsemanship people assure us every detail has been seen to for the weekend. The setting is a beautiful, private estate with rose gardens and plenty of trees to provide shady comfort.
A chuck wagon all the way from New Mexico will feed guests with authentic chuck wagon meals, and after dinner there will be entertainment. There will also be merchandise from carefully selected venders for those who enjoy shopping.
In addition to the in-depth learning experience, guests will have a chance to visit one-on-one with the clinicians. Out-of-town guests will be offered three fascinating museum tours.
Although this is an auditor’s clinic, the people at Light Hands prefer to think of everyone as their guests.
All you have to do is come prepared to relax, learn, share and enjoy. They guarantee that you will be inspired.
For more admission information visit www.lighthandshorsemanship.com or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.