My Four-Legged Teacher

Allow me to introduce you to my Swedish Warmblood mare, Remy Martin. Remy Martin is now 21 years old, and I acquired her in December, 2005 and brought her to Equilibrium Horse Center from a very quiet, small barn.

Remy Martin & Emily

One of the biggest lessons that Remy has taught me is to conquer one’s fear.

I remember one rider that used to come for lessons at EHC, and she would go to Costa Rica and surf for hours on end among sharks, high waves, and underwater tows. She would say that riding a horse was by far scarier than surfing. She would say: “Surf boards don’t have their own brains.”

If you look at the definition of fear, it says “Fear is a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil,pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.” http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/fear

If you start to think about it, riding and spending time with horses involves participating with an animal that weighs over 1,000 pounds. Just being on the ground and leading them around can be dangerous. Let alone, being on their back and something sudden happens, or there is equipment failure.

Remy Martin had come from a dressage background, where many of the horses in this discipline are treated more like vehicles, than a living, breathing, thinking and feeling creature. Even though she had come from a long-term loving home, their expectations for her, and her sport performance was more than she could handle. Also, having come from a small barn of only four other barn mates, to a place with over 50 horses spelled a recipe for disaster.

So we began our journey, first with Remy being totally scared of her new environment, and her past experience with humans not exactly positive and myself a totally inexperienced horsewoman.

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