I first saw Monty Roberts work with horses on the T.V. programme Q.E.D
and was intrigued by what he appeared to be able to do. I was, however,
a little sceptical. In 1998 I got the chance to see him in a demonstration,
and realised that I wanted to know more about this way of working with
horses. It was at this demo that I got details of the Intelligent
Horsemanship Association and the courses that are run by Kelly
Marks. In the summer of 1999 I attended the 5 day foundation course thinking
it would simply be 'a nice thing to do'. However, it changed my life!
It really opened my eyes and I realised that the term 'problem horse'
should in fact read 'horse with problems'.
In November 2000, whilst working my way through the remaining modules,
I was asked by The Bransby Home of Rest for Horses near Lincoln to work
with some of their 'residents'. I now visit the rescue centre twice a
week and am grateful for the experience and satisfaction of helping the
horses and ponies regain their trust in humans.
After completing all the Intelligent Horsemanship courses, exams and submitting
a horse psychology project and several case studies, I gained the Monty
Roberts Preliminary Certificate of Horsemanship and became an Intelligent
Horsemanship Recommended Associate.
Whilst visiting The Bransby Home of Rest for Horses I was filmed, for
channel 4's 'Pet Rescue', working with several of the horses. In addition
to this I have worked with both Monty Roberts and Kelly Marks at demonstrations
in the UK.
Intelligent Horsemanship is about being open minded and not dismissing
new or different practises, providing they benefit the horse, and do not
involve violence. As horses cannot communicate with us verbally, non verbal
communication is their only way of telling us that something is wrong.
Kicking, biting, bucking, moving away etc. are often signs that the horse
is either confused or possibly uncomfortable/in pain. Instead of blaming
the horse, I will try to see things from his point of view and accept
that he is trying to tell me something.
Anyone can work with horses the way I do and get results, if you work
in sympathy with their natural instincts, respect their feelings and try
Understand when they are finding something difficult. In addition to this,
our interactions with horses should be carried out in a calm and quiet