2022: ST Evaluator & ST Academy Coach & Mentor Instructor
“I’m Wendy and I live in the UK with my 4 horses.
I have been doing ST since 2010 with my gelding, Marley.
I bought Marley as a ‘bombproof’ 4 year old. By the time we found each other he had already hunted in Ireland, been in a riding school and then sold on.
He certainly was a quiet youngster and I was able to do a lot of things with him. But I believe it had all been too much too soon for such a young horse, and one day at a clinic he completely lost it and had a major meltdown.
After that he lost his confidence being ridden in the arena. I could hardly ride him at all, it was devastating for both of us.
So instead of pushing on I stopped riding him and only focussed on doing the non-ridden pillars of ST – groundwork, longeing, work in hand and liberty.
I can’t remember how long I did this for, possibly a year but when the time felt right I decided to start riding him again.
That day was so incredible. I remember the feeling vividly. Marley felt like a different horse entirely.
He was confident and balanced.
He knew the lateral movements and all I needed to do was experiment to transfer the aids that he knew from the ground to my seat in the saddle.
Honestly it was an incredible transformation and I would recommend everyone to do this, even if your horse seems to be doing OK under saddle.
I attended a lot of live clinics with Marijke and graduated Grade 2 and in 2014 Marijke invited me to become an Instructor!
This had not been in my life plan but now it was!
So in 2015 I qualified as a ST Instructor and started teaching. Then I became an evaluator and now I’m an Academy Coach and Mentor Instructor for the Basic Certification Programme Trainee Instructors.
The image bottom left is the first time I made a presentation in front of 30 people in order to qualify as an instructor. It was something I thought I would never be capable of. The programme continues to bring me into my stretch zone and each time it does I become stronger and more capable in so many ways.
So as you can see Marijke de Jong and ST have completely changed my life and the life of my horses. The opportunity is there for everyone now. I recommend you grab it with both hands! ”