Frank Bell's Gentle Solutions Revolution | Discover the Horse You Never Knew

Winter Newsletter 2015

 

Winter Newsletter

Winter 2014
I hope this finds you and your horses in a good place and ready for the short and much cooler days. A red bow on your horses will bring in the holidays in fine fashion.

A couple weeks ago I spent a wonderful Thanksgiving with great old friends. We toasted to GRATITUDE and I find it an appropriate subject especially this time of your.

GRATITUDE

Not so long ago I was in a third world country where the natives have so little. Roads are filled with potholes. The cost of living exorbitant. Opportunity almost non-existent. Yet, for the most part, people are happy. They have so little, but have so much. That was a strong lesson for me and my compatriots.

Just think about it for a few moments. Isn’t just owning a horse quite an extravagance? If you have quality pasture and good living conditions, your horses have it better than so many. Then consider having the free time to indulge in your passion. How about your equipment, actual riding opportunities, and horsey friends to share your dreams? Your team of professionals- vets, farriers, trainers? It goes on and on and I’m quite certain by now you’re on board. Truth be known, we are the most fortunate people on the planet. Revel in it and take notice.

And don’t forget to acknowledge gratitude to our horse. They try so hard to understand and work with us. Sometimes we’re so caught up in the ride or lesson or jump that we forget to let that horse know how we appreciate them. They get it, trust me. Genuine acknowledgement is easily conveyed and once absorbed, the horse will try even harder.

So often when I’m in the zone with my own horse or someone else’s I find myself unconsciously reassuring with my fingertips feathering the neck just above the withers, reins in hand. I’m letting the horse know I’m there, appreciative, and having a ball- saying- this is special. And they get it, trust me!

WINTER TIPS

Winter can be a wonderful time for healthy horses. With proper feeding and living conditions, horses can glow in the winter. Years ago my horse Lakota Breeze spent winters with dude string horses in the Madison Valley of Montana. These horses ate snow for moisture and pawed through the snow and ice to access the alfalfa/grass, thereby getting cardio and fabulous feed. These horses glowed of health and well being and required no supplements.

The older horses needed some help and that was dually noted and addressed. In many instances dental care was the answer and suddenly some of these horses just blossomed. Sometimes it’s a simple change of diet.

· In extreme cold some horses don’t drink properly as the water is literally ice cold. So tank heaters are a great option and encourage drinking. A dollop of molasses in a bucket of water is a good enticement as well.

· If you’re not riding horses during the winter have the shoes removed. The horses’ hooves will benefit from being barefoot and contact with the ground and their feet won’t ball up with snow and ice nearly as much as with shoes.

· Horses need salt and minerals in the winter as well. Free choice loose salt/minerals is best.

· Worming after a couple hard frosts at the onset of winter is ideal to augment your year round schedule. A discussion with your vet on performing a fecal sample analysis to get a baseline on your horse’s intestinal condition may also be of long term benefit.

· Horses can handle wind, cold, or moisture, but not all at the same time. If you live in such conditions, shelter is important. When it is cold horses need to eat hay to stay warm. Unlimited grass hay is optimum but always ensure it is of the good quality.
PROBLEM SOLVING WITH OUR TEAM OF ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS

Over the last fifteen years I’ve assembled a team of accredited instructors worldwide. We help people with their horses one on one as well as via email or phone. With the plethora of interesting email questions constantly coming my way, I often defer to my team and encourage them to respond to the client as we continue to learn from each other. With so much talent and experience within the group, it is truly amazing how thorough and enlightening these responses can be.
We invite your challenges and questions at: info@horsewhisperer.com

HIGHLIGHTING THREE OF OUR TEAM

Introducing three of our distinguished Accredited Instructors. Missy is moving mountains in Oregon and her work and philosophy the subject of several noted magazines. Jim Rea’s general horse knowledge. . . off the charts. And Marry’s career and book, “Know You, Know Your Horse” have far exceeded expectations. It is really all about empowerment as these three stellar human beings empower other horse people who in turn do the same as both horses and humans benefit- truly a win-win scenario.

Missy Wryn

Humane Horse Trainer – Training the Whole Horse
The Softer Side of Horse Training

“I developed Training the Whole Horse® on the foundation of DO NO HARM. My methods and techniques demonstrate that horses do not need bits, spurs or devices for control, but are truly willing partners when given the opportunity while receiving loving herd leadership they genetically require”.

Jim Rea
The Colorado Natural Horsemanship Center

“The objective of owning a recreational horse is to have fun without either you or the horse getting hurt. Anytime a horse and human get together. . . someone gets trained.”

Marry Morrow
From the Ground up Horsemanship

“Horsemanship begins with observation.
Understanding the personality is the only way to truly bond.
Learning how to present yourself to your horse in a clear but non confrontational manner is the goal to a wonderful partnership.”

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses-

Wishing You and Yours the Finest of Holidays!

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND
Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank

PRODUCTS WE BELIEVE IN
I don’t endorse every product that comes my way. I only recognize the products that make a real difference to the horse and rider. I use and recommend the following quality products:
Supracor and Equipedic pads. Save 15% ordering from Dances With Horses- (DWH)
Leather Therapy restores, reinvigorates, and actually strengthens leather products
Synergist Saddles are custom designed for horse/rider, are lightweight, and designed by endurance riders to offer optimum comfort for all parties. Mention DWH when ordering
Forco is a pre-biotic supplement that improves the bio-flora in your horse’s systems so they get the most from their feed and maintain their weight. Hard keepers benefit dramatically
Arborwear clothing, originally designed for tree climbing/pruning professionals, doubles as superb riding attire with ample room and comfort for older horsemen
Those of you considering breeding horses this spring, take note of Bob Claymier’s “Complete Guide to Horse Breeding, Foaling and Foal Training”. This 3 DVD 4 hour set is likely the most comprehensive guide available and takes one through selecting the right mares and stallions all the way along to weaning the foal produced on the other end. Additional information can be found at – www.desert-rose-arabians.com.
Schreiner’s Herbal Solution- A highly effective topical application endorsed by vets worldwide that speeds up healing dramatically
Thrive Horse Feeds- for the very best in nutrition especially for hard keepers

Each quarterly newsletter I will be highlighting a specific DVD in my audio/visual library. This quarter, the winner is-

WORKING WITH THE YOUNG ONES

Actual footage of foals, weanling, yearlings, and a spoiled two year old leopard Appaloosa give horse trainers and novices alike a starting place with all younger horses. Using my Gentle Solutions approach, amazing results are achieved in minutes as these horses progress before your very eyes. From making that first and lasting impression to the basics of pressure and release then leading, I clearly explain and demonstrate the how’s and why’s of guiding the young ones. Foot handling in preparation for trimming and shoeing, ear and mouth handling, and desensitizing prepare these young impressionable creatures for their certain future. This one hour work is invaluable to the success of both the horse and the handler

ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS
With twenty-four accredited instructors worldwide teaching a remarkable safety system our program is truly making a difference. Our Accredited Instructors help riders achieve heightened levels of confidence and safety while establishing a safe place to regroup as necessary. We invite you to look into our Accreditation Program.

Link to the Western Horseman Series

Join Frank Bell’s Gentle Solutions Group on Facebook

RAY HUNT QUOTES-
“THIS ISN’T ABOUT MAKING THE HORSE LEARN, IT’S ABOUT ALLOWING THEM TO LEARN. . . DON’T PRESENT THINGS THAT ARE TOO HARD TO LEARN, DON’T BE ARROGANT. . . I CAN RIDE AS FAST AS ANY HORSE CAN RUN”

 


Summer Newsletter 2014

SUMMERTIME
For most of us, especially in the north country, summer is the predominant riding season as the build up from an especially long winter and a typically finicky spring finally come into full swing. All those plans and ideas can now be implemented and our preparation fully tested. Enjoy. You’ve earned your summer riding!
A few points about horses and summertime:
• Unlimited water, salt, and minerals are more important now than ever.
• Shade should be provided where your horses can easily find it and they will seek it out, just as we do.
• Do your horse’s feet need attention?
• Not all horses require the same treatment for worming and vaccinating. There is a strong movement toward having a fecal sample analyzed to determine if there is a need for worming as we may be removing beneficial bacteria when we worm. Many horsemen do not vaccinate, ever. A frank discussion with your vet on such matters may end up being of long term benefit to the proper health of your partner.
• Stallions and geldings develop a hard bean-like obstruction that impedes urination. Learn how to check and perform these tests or have your vet do so.
• Insect control becomes dramatically more important as summer comes into play. Be kind. The options are endless.
• A quality pad is the kindest thing you can do for your horse. Protect that back because a sore horse is a dangerous horse. Note our pad suggestions in the column to the right. We are selling dozens of Equipedics in Australia as word spreads.
SUMMER, CLINICS A PLENTY
For me it was about 1988 when I met the man that has now influenced horsemen and women worldwide with his gentle and effective approach to horsemanship. Tom Dorrance was conducting a clinic in southwest Montana and I was as green as it gets. I watched this diminutive gentle-man move mountains as he helped the participants be more effective by usually doing less and WAITING. Several of his young students quietly worked off to the side and their skill, technique, and patience were fabulous. That day changed my life. Before leaving I thanked Tom for making the world a better place for horses and people, he very shyly accepting my sincere compliment.
Today there are dozens, hundreds of clinicians teaching derivations of Tom Dorrance’s approach as the movement spreads worldwide and for the most part horses benefit. Some are fabulous. Some are NOT. Take notice. Are the horses happy? Are they given a real chance to figure it out or is the clinician nothing more than a demanding dictator? The clinicians I respect most teach and emulate patience, keen observation, and clear communication.
Quite often as clinicians we are handicapped by ill-fitting saddles, teeth issues, under and overfed horses, feet issues, and horses in pain. It is absolutely critical that we give our horses every chance possible to succeed, so insuring that the above mentioned conditions do NOT exist gives us and our horses the highest probability to succeed and get the most from the clinic or private instruction.
If you do attend some clinics this summer or at anytime for that matter, be courteous to the teacher and the other students and spectators by staying focused. Two ears, one mouth. Listen closely and ask pertinent thoughtful questions. Save the jabber for later or outside. It’s called RESPECT! Most importantly, be prepared to make changes, because if you continue doing the same thing, you’ll get the same result
KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE
Our esteemed Accredited Instructor Marry Morrow along with Eunice Rush have found that itch that needed to be scratched in the horse world and with Trafalgar Publishing behind them, the sky is the limit. Finding the right horse isn’t so easy as there are a lot of moving parts.
In their book they explain all four “social styles” or personalities, their modifiers and variables seen and unseen which result in behaviors that we must deal with every day. Do you wonder why your children are so different from each other ? Do you have a horse that struggles to stand still or one that seems lazy and doesn’t like to go? Personality dictates the answers to these questions.
Understanding how we as humans learn and how to connect with our horses is just one of the helpful techniques you will learn from the book. Along with learning how to purchase a horse that matches your social style, they also explain how to train your horse with an understanding of how he learns. The book also has chapters on pain, saddle fitting and working with abused horses. You can go to www.ridesafe2day.com to purchase your autographed copy.
You can also download questionnaires from the book at http://www.horseandriderbooks.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=KNYOKN&Category_Code=WNEW and download for free the human social style questionnaire and the horse personality questionnaire. Facebook page -KnowYouKnowYourHorse
PROBLEM SOLVING WITH OUR TEAM OF ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS
Over the last fifteen years I’ve assembled a team of accredited instructors worldwide. We help people with their horses one on one as well as via email or phone. With the plethora of interesting email questions constantly coming my way, I often defer to my team and encourage them to respond to the client as we continue to learn from each other. With so much talent and experience within the group, it is truly amazing how thorough and enlightening these responses can be.
We invite your challenges and questions at: info@horsewhisperer.com
VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB
Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to my Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, my 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrive conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each installment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!
DISCOVER THE HORSE YOU NEVER KNEW
I’ve developed a logical sequence of exercises that gives horsemen a plan that begins with simple groundwork and leads into the saddle, if and only if the horse gives a clear invitation to be ridden. When mounted up, we immediately establish a place to regroup if necessary. With that solid beginning and foundation, the potential is unlimited. My 7 Step Safety System is the focus of my Discover the Horse You Never Knew DVD and Gentle Solutions Book.

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

Safe Riding Always,
From the whole gang at Dances With Horses,

Frank Bell


Spring Newsletter 2014

                                                                                         Spring Newsletter

With longer days leading to greening pastures our horses will take on their annual shedding appearance with some of these changes quite radical as they slowly morph back into the slick-coated horses we remember from last summer and fall. Patience.
A few points about horses and springtime:
• One day can be warm, even balmy. . . the next day full blown winter yet again. Continue to provide shelter from the elements and be vigilant.
• Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample water. Tank heaters are good insurance against colic and dehydration.
• Spring is always welcome after the drabness of winter but it can play havoc with a horse’s digestive system until they adjust. Rich spring grasses can also lead to founder so it is best to initially control turn out time and discuss the issue with your vet.
• Do your horse’s feet need attention?
• If you worm and vaccinate, spring worming and vaccinations are a good idea. This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam so your horses can go into the riding season in prime condition.
• Not all horses require the same treatment for worming and vaccinating. The hard reality is that we may be removing beneficial bacteria when we worm. Many horsemen do not vaccinate, ever. A frank discussion with your vet on such matters may end up being of long term benefit to the proper health of your partner.
• Horses can handle cold and they can handle wet, but not both at the same time. If you live in such conditions, shelter is important. When it is cold horses need to eat hay to stay warm. Unlimited grass hay is ideal.
• Stallions and geldings develop beans that obstruct urination. Keeping the sheath clean on a regular basis is also an important part of male horses health. Learn how to check and perform these tests or have your vet do so.
• Tuning up your tack makes for a spring project. Take inventory. Order the tack you’ll need NOW. Clean your blankets, pads, girths, and tack. Do a close inspection of worn leather parts and replace if in question.
• A quality pad is the kindest thing you can do for your horse. Protect that back because a sore horse is a dangerous horse

SPRING- A CHANCE TO BEGIN ANEW

 “If you continue doing the same thing, you’ll get the same result.” Are you happy with your relationship and progress with your horses? If the answer is YES, then stay on track, revel in your success, and continue improving your timing. Usually after an honest assessment most would like to see improvement in ourselves and in turn, some positive changes in our horses.
Change begins with establishing a plan and taking that first step. Having an eager student is necessary and a relaxed horse leads to a cooperative attitude. Think back on the teachers you had in school. Some made learning fun and interesting; some just the opposite. Be that great teacher for your horses.
I’ve developed a logical sequence of exercises that gives horsemen a plan that begins with simple groundwork and leads into the saddle, if and only if the horse gives a clear invitation to be ridden. When mounted up, we immediately establish a place to regroup if necessary. With that solid beginning and foundation, the potential is unlimited. My 7 Step Safety System is the focus of my Discover the Horse You Never Knew DVD and Gentle Solutions Book.
KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE
Our esteemed Accredited Instructor Marry Morrow along with Eunice Rush have found that itch that needed to be scratched in the horse world and with Trafalgar Publishing behind them, the sky is the limit. Finding the right horse isn’t so easy as there are a lot of moving parts.
In their book they explain all four “social styles” or personalities, their modifiers and variables seen and unseen which result in behaviors that we must deal with every day. Do you wonder why your children are so different from each other ? Do you have a horse that struggles to stand still or one that seems lazy and doesn’t like to go? Personality dictates the answers to these questions.
Understanding how we as humans learn and how to connect with our horses is just one of the helpful techniques you will learn from the book. Along with learning how to purchase a horse that matches your social style, they also explain how to train your horse with an understanding of how he learns. The book also has chapters on pain, saddle fitting and working with abused horses. You can go to www.ridesafe2day.com to purchase your autographed copy.
You can also download questionnaires from the book at http://www.horseandriderbooks.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=KNYOKN&Category_Code=WNEW and download for free the human social style questionnaire and the horse personality questionnaire. Facebook page -KnowYouKnowYourHorse
SLOW DOWN THAT FOOD HOG
We’ve all dealt with the alpha horse that quickly gobbles down his food then robs other horses of their meal. Bob Claymier enlightened me to a concept to address this annoying behavior. If you feed grain to several horses in the same paddock and one has a tendency to gulp their food down and then hog into their pasture mates – try placing 3-4 smooth stones about half a fist size into the feed bucket which will slow them down perhaps enough for the others to finish. Use smooth stones as the horse will be moving them around with their nose to get at the grain and you do not want to cause abrasions. It is also be a good idea to wet all grain before feeding as a way to reduce the possibility of choke or impaction especially with the horse that eats quickly.
PROBLEM SOLVING WITH OUR TEAM OF ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS
Over the last fifteen years I’ve assembled a team of accredited instructors worldwide. One of the services we provide is remote coaching via email or phone. With a plethora of interesting emails constantly coming my way, I often defer to the team and encourage them to respond to the client as well as all of us so we can learn from each other. With so much talent and experience within the group, it is truly amazing how thorough and enlightening these responses can be. Far too often the whole story isn’t told to the trainer so the aggressive horse’s antics are not expected. Armed with the truth, the trainer can be far more effective, knowing the whole story.
We invite your challenges and questions at: info@horsewhisperer.com

 VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

 Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to my Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, my 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!

CLINICS

Jim Rea and I will be conducting our next week long clinic at White Stallion Ranch Nov 9-16, 2014. These weeks are really special as we share our knowledge of the equine on so many levels. With 130 horses you will find your soul-mate and progress beyond your expectations.
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
“Getting back into riding as a middle aged less confident rider had its challenges and my horses knew it. The White Stallion Clinic empowered me to take the lead and my whole relationship has done a 180.” Adrienne Mullinose, Connecticut
“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

Safe Riding Always,
From the whole gang at Dances With Horses,

Frank Bell

PRODUCTS WE BELIEVE IN
I only recognize the products that make a real difference to the horse and rider. I use and recommend the following quality products:
• Supracor and Equipedic pads. Save 15% ordering from Dances With Horses- (DWH)
• Leather Therapy restores, reinvigorates, and actually strengthens leather products
• Buckaroo Leather make some of the finest tack from the highest quality leather available
• Synergist Saddles are running some holiday specials RIGHT NOW! These saddles are custom designed for horse/rider, lightweight, and designed by endurance riders to offer optimum comfort for all parties. Mention Dances With Horses when ordering
• Forco is a pre-biotic supplement that improves the bio-flora in your horse’s systems so they get the most from their feed and maintain their weight. Hard keepers benefit dramatically
• Arborwear clothing, originally designed for tree climbing/pruning professionals, doubles as superb riding attire with ample room and comfort for older horsemen
• Those of you that are considering breeding horses this spring should consider purchasing accredited instructor Bob Claymier’s “Complete Guide to Horse Breeding, Foaling and Foal Training”. This 3 DVD 4 hour set is likely the most comprehensive guide available and takes one through selecting the right mares and stallions all the way along to weaning the foal produced on the other end. Additional information can be found at – www.desert-rose-arabians.com.
• Schreiner’s Herbal Solution- A highly effective topical application endorsed by vets worldwide that speeds up healing dramatically
• Thrive Horse Feeds- for the very best in nutrition especially for hard keepers
MOUNTING THE DIFFICULT HORSE AND PROBLEM FOOT HANDLING DVD

Each quarterly newsletter I will be highlighting several DVD’s in my audio/visual library.

Are your horses walking off before you find your stirrup on the off side? Maddening and really downright disrespectful. Your horse should wait for you- period!

A bit nervous about picking up feet? Some horses are a snap; some make it difficult and dangerous and our nervousness travels right through to the horse. Both these topics are well covered in our Mounting the Difficult Horse and Problem Foot Handling DVD.

ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS

With twenty-three accredited instructors worldwide teaching a remarkable safety system our program is truly making a difference. Our Accredited Instructors help riders achieve heightened levels of confidence and safety while establishing a safe place to regroup as necessary. We invite you to look into our Accreditation Program.

Link to 3-part Western Horseman Series of Frank Bell’s 7 Step Safety System

Join Frank Bell’s Gentle Solutions Group on Facebook

THE HORSES THAT TOUCHED MY HEART
“As Jim Olson and I rushed from the stands to the winner’s circle, I flashed back on that spring afternoon months before when we had rekindled his trust and belief in humans.”
Excerpt from Magnifico’s Return to Paradise


Autumn Newsletter 2013

Autumn 2013

What IS it about fall? In one word MAGICAL. And I’m not alone. This is easily my favorite time to ride the uncrowded trails with magnificent colors and a crispness in the air. Here in Idaho it’s summer days and cold nights. I hope this finds you too enjoying fall and some of the finest riding of the year.

The cool mornings this time of year will have horses feeling pretty frisky. It is always a good idea to take that ‘fresh’ out of them prior to riding. My 7 Step Safety System is designed precisely for this exact situation. A few minutes of groundwork will pay dividends later on the trail. Warming up with the sixth exercise in my system, Ballet on the Ground, followed by Ballet in the Saddle gets the horse’s mind into the game because they have to concentrate where to place their feet. This wonderful warm-up exercise is being used by horse owners worldwide with great success and the culmination of my system.

A few important points as winter closes in:
• Deliberately put weight on hard-keepers this time of year before winter sets in.
• Dentistry is of utmost importance going into winter, especially older horses. Locate a competent vet or certified dentist.
• When the fall riding ends and winter sets in, a few months without shoes usually benefits horses’ feet. Are those shoes really necessary?
• If you do fall vaccines, give your horses a day or two off before hard work.
• Weather conditions can and will change dramatically so be sure your horses have access to cover. Horses can handle cold and wet, but not together. Providing some kind of shelter, even rudimentary is a good idea.
• Stallions and geldings develop “beans” that obstruct urination. Learn how to check for this condition or ask your vet to do so.
• Worming after a couple hard frosts is the preferred timing and actual parasite testing seems to be the wave of the future. More on this trend as it unfolds.

FINDING THE GOOD

A movement quietly began back in the 70’s and 80’s that has now become known as the Natural Horsemanship Movement. While some bristle at the mention of these words, the outcome for horses and humans has been positive, hugely so. The information available today along with hands-on clinics and competent help, has exploded exponentially. Just about every type of training or healing modality is available and most likely taking place right in your backyard.
I’m often saddened by the naysayers who identify with only one clinician and put the rest down. The fact of the matter is that each of us have a different way of communicating our program; a different spin, if you will.
The evidence is in the horse. Is that clinician creating happy eager horses that enjoy learning? If not, take the good and leave the rest.

Tom Dorrance is generally considered the grandfather of the movement. I had the great fortune of meeting Tom on several occasions. An animal lover at the nascent stage of my equine experience, I was in the company of quite experienced horsemen and women who were completely in awe of this man, so I paid very close attention. Tom’s feeling for the horse and ability to read horses was. . . uncanny. His patience for the horse and the human alike were admirable to anyone switched on. The word KIND comes to mind.
Tom passed his knowledge onto Ray Hunt when one of Ray’s horses was giving him fits. Ray had the personality to take Tom’s message to the world. . . and did. Ray was a much harder man with far less empathy for the human, but a masterful horseman, beyond belief. Ray didn’t mind watching the human struggling in his quest to understand, often at the expense of the horse and the handler. Tears of frustration and failure at his clinics were predictable, where tears of joy abounded at Tom’s clinics, mine included.
But both men inspired the movement that today is engulfing horses on every continent, and all for the better. The old brutal ways are now being shunned, hidden by those that employee them, and often left behind as the younger, more enlightened generation take the reins.
I urge you to be part of the example of kindness and openness. Find the good and the merit of everyone that is out there doing their part. Then if appropriate, share your spin on this wonderful movement in a world that so needs the good, the positive.

SIMPLIFYING THE MYSTIFYING

Over the years I’ve challenged myself to simplify what others have made vague and complicated into some extremely simple concepts.

V-Thinking
• The bottom of the V is thought. Every conscious action begins in our mind, right?
• The top is extreme pressure
• By always beginning at the bottom of the V and gradually moving up, the horse quickly understands what is being asked. Before long the horse is complying with little or no pressure. Reading your mind?

Three T’s
• Theory-If you don’t know why you’re doing something with a horse, you should not be doing it- period. Understand the WHY
• Technique- Understand and perfect the physical part of it
• Timing- Tune up your releases. Reward for thought. Be constantly improving your timing

Four C’s
• Control- Leads to
• Confidence- Leads to
• Competence- Leads to
• Improved Communication

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to my Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, my 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!
WHITE STALLION WEEK LONG CLINICS
Jim Rea and I have conducted clinics at White Stallion Ranch for the past five years in the spring and fall. With 130 horses we’re able to find just the right fit for our students. From experienced horsemen and women to novices seeking to gain confidence and improve their horse handling skills, the results are amazing as our students emerge walking tall and quite pleased with themselves exuding heightened confidence. Our mornings are devoted to hands on with horses in the huge arena. Beginning with my safety system we progress through the week to more advanced maneuvers, games, and horse activities. Afternoons can be hot in that dry desert sun, so after lunch and a siesta we discuss the plethora of subjects that surround the equine. Nutrition, living conditions, saddle fitting, pain assessment and treatment, typical horse problems, etc. keep our gang busy until the afternoon cools. Then we move back outside to discuss and demonstrate such topics as problem foot handling, saddle fitting, barefoot trimming, proper trailer loading, and just how to check your horse’s teeth. About then the dinner bell rings and happy hour commences.
Most participate in team penning several times during the week and our breakfast ride on Saturday is topped off with an interpretive ride as the joys of the Sonoran Desert and interesting relationships of flora and fauna are well explained. The cuisine is fabulous and candlelight dinners on the patio, well downright enchanting. After dinner entertainment ranges from interpretive astronomy/star gazing to cowboy poetry and singing around the campfire to a creatures of the desert demonstration as Phil Gonzales enlightens and entertains with hands on to those so inclined to handle snakes, geckos, and one very perky chinchilla!
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?
Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion Nov 10-17.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours a great autumn of riding.

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND
Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank


Summer Newsletter 2013

Summertime!
I hope this finds you enjoying longer and greener days as summer comes into full swing. This being the preferred riding season for so many, there are considerations in dealing with heat and insects.
A few points about horses and summertime:
• Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample clean water. A dollop of molasses will make the water more enticing for those less-inclined-to-drink horses- old endurance trick
• Horses will sweat more in the summer and in work. Be sure to have loose salt and minerals readily available free choice
• Provide some kind of shade to give your horses relief from that intense penetrating sun
• Do your horse’s feet need attention? They grow faster in the summer
• This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam performed on your horse if you haven’t done so already. Summer and fall are the seasons for weight gain for older horses. Deterioration in health and body condition of older horses can often be traced to improper dental care so they should receive particular attention
• Not all horses require the same treatment for worming and vaccinating. The hard reality is that we may be removing beneficial flora when we worm. The current thinking is to have a fecal sample analysis and act accordingly. Many horsemen do not vaccinate, ever. A frank discussion with your vet on such matters may end up being of long term benefit to the proper health of your partner

Summer riding can vary dramatically from downright hot to quite cool mornings, especially here in the west. Horses are almost always a bit frisky in the cold and my 7 Step Safety System takes the ‘fresh’ off the horse. Knowing your horses well, problems can be noted and dealt with prior to riding. Sometimes our horses just aren’t quite right and better to find out and act accordingly before or instead of mounting up.
INSECT CONTROL
There are two types of flies: those that breed in manure, and those that don’t. For flies that don’t breed in manure, such as horseflies, the best protection for your horse are repellents. Spraying lightly on a daily basis and using ointments or gels around the eyes and on and inside of ears works best. Switch them up routinely to avoid resistance.
Manure-breeding flies like the common house fly or the stable fly, can be minimized by removing or covering manure piles with dirt. Composting the manure breaks it down quickly into a usable form, thereby turning the lemon into lemonade!
Consider fly traps and Fly Predators, the tiny insects that feed upon fly larvae can reduce the problem dramatically.
FITNESS/FAIRNESS
Those first rides of the spring and summer should be fitness rides, not marathons! It doesn’t take too many rides to help our horses muscle up. And it’s never a bad idea to do some stretching and strengthening ourselves as a fit rider is much appreciated by all parties and especially our beloved horses.
If your horses live in hilly country and are active, they’ll most likely be maintaining a reasonable level of fitness. Conversely, if your horses live in a flat paddock and aren’t moving or exercising much, be fair about your riding program. I truly believe the equestrians who get into the mind and body of their horses are the most competent and successful. So pay close attention and have empathy for the creatures that have captured our hearts.
ASSEMBLING YOUR TEAM OF PROFESSIONALS
Just as we surround ourselves with competent doctors, dentists, dermatologists, etc., we need to do the same with our horses. Locating your team of competent equine professionals is really important to your peace of mind and your horses’ well being. Amazing as it sounds, not all vets, dentists, and farriers are comfortable around horses. I’ve found that it pays to ask around and find the ones that are and the difference is night and day. I’ve seen horses scatter far and wide when even the sound of the vet or farrier’s truck is within hearing because the last encounter wasn’t so pleasant. So do your homework. Talk to other horse folks. Ask for recommendations at your local feed store.
Alternative healing modalities are becoming increasingly recognized. Chiropractors, massage therapists, and cranial sacral workers are being taken seriously and in many cases doing some fabulous work and healing. Remember that a sore horse is an unhappy and possibly dangerous horse. I refer such professionals worldwide from my vast database. Here at Dances With Horses we’re happy to help you find the best of the best. Contact: Info@horsewhisperer.com.
KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE
Improving the relationship between humans and horses is many times very complex. There are many facets to a perfect union and understanding your own personality along with the horses unique personality is one part of being successful. One of our Accredited Instructors “Marry Morrow” has teamed up with Eunice Rush to write the book “Know You, Know Your Horse” published by Trafalgar publishers. In their book they explain all four “social styles” or personalities, their modifiers and variables seen and unseen which result in behaviors that we must deal with every day. Do you wonder why your children are so different from each other ? Do you have a horse that struggles to stand still or one that seems lazy and doesn’t like to go? Personality dictates the answers to these questions.
Understanding how we as humans learn and how to connect with our horses is just one of the helpful techniques you will learn from the book. Along with learning how to purchase a horse that matches your social style, they also explain how to train your horse with an understanding of how he learns. The book also has chapters on pain, saddle fitting and working with abused horses. You can go to www.ridesafe2day.com to purchase your autographed copy.
You can also download questionnaires from the book at http://www.horseandriderbooks.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=KNYOKN&Category_Code=WNEW and download for free the human social style questionnaire and the horse personality questionnaire
Facebook page –KnowYouKnowYourHorse

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB
Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to Frank’s Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, Frank’s 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!
WHITE STALLION WEEK LONG CLINICS
Jim Rea and I have conducted clinics at White Stallion Ranch for the past five years in the spring and fall. With 130 horses we’re able to find just the right fit for our students. From experienced horsemen and women to novices seeking to gain confidence and improve their horse handling skills, the results are amazing as our students emerge walking tall and quite pleased with themselves exuding heightened confidence.
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?
Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion Nov 10-17, 2013.
“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours a wonderful and safe riding season.

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank


Spring Newsletter

Spring Newsletter

I hope the longer days are leading to greener days. Horses will take on their annual shedding appearance, some changes quite radical as they morph as spring comes upon us.

A few points about horses and springtime:

• Remember that one day can be warm, even balmy. . . the next full blown winter yet again. Continue to provide shelter from the elements
• Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample water. Tank heaters are good insurance against colic and dehydration
• Do your horse’s feet need attention?
• If you worm and vaccinate, spring worming and vaccinations are a good idea. This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam performed on your horse and take corrective action as necessary. Deterioration in health and body condition of older horses can often be traced to improper dental care so they should receive particular attention.
• Not all horses require the same treatment for worming and vaccinating. The hard reality is that we may be removing beneficial flora when we worm. Many horsemen do not vaccinate, ever. A frank discussion with your vet on such matters may end up being of long term benefit to the proper health of your partner.
• Horses can handle cold and they can handle wet, but not both at the same time. If you live in such conditions, shelter is important. When it is cold horses need to eat hay to stay warm. Unlimited grass hay is optimum
• Stallions and geldings develop beans that obstruct urination. Learn how to check for this condition
• Tuning up your tack makes for a spring project. Take inventory. Order the tack you’ll need NOW. Clean your blankets, pads, girths, and tack. Do a close inspection of worn leather parts and replace if in question. Both you and your horses will be real happy about this come spring riding when there are no surprises.
• A quality pad is the best thing you can do for your horse. Protect that back.

Warm-up in the spring is of utmost importance as horses can be quite frisky especially if not ridden for an extended period. Saddling up and climbing right on is not recommended. My safety system is the focus of my Discover the Horse You Never Knew DVD and Gentle Solutions Book. This logical sequence of exercises puts you in charge and that leadership follows into the saddle as the horse’s energy is used constructively and brains and feet connect. Feel what the horse is telling you on the ground and in the saddle. Are you on the same page? Is your horse well? Are you in a good place to ride and what is your plan? The more time we spend THINKING ahead of riding, the greater our accomplishments.
I had the great fortune of attending one of Ray Hunt’s last clinics in Driggs, Idaho. I asked him to sign several books. He simply wrote- THINK. . . Ray Hunt.

KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE

Our esteemed Accredited Instructor Marry Morrow has accomplished something quite remarkable along with her partner, Eunice. They’ve found that itch that needed to be scratched in the horse world and with Trafalgar Publishing behind them, the sky is the limit. Finding the right horse isn’t so easy as there are a lot of moving parts. Eunice and Marry have explored this thoroughly as detailed below:

Improving the relationship between humans and horses is many times very complex. There are many facets to a perfect union and understanding your own personality along with the horses unique personality is one part of being successful. One of my trainers “Marry Morrow” has teamed up with Eunice Rush to write the book “Know You, Know Your Horse” published by Trafalgar publishers. In their book they explain all four “social styles” or personalities, their modifiers and variables seen and unseen which result in behaviors that we must deal with every day. Do you wonder why your children are so different from each other ? Do you have a horse that struggles to stand still or one that seems lazy and doesn’t like to go? Personality dictates the answers to these questions.
Understanding how we as humans learn and how to connect with our horses is just one of the helpful techniques you will learn from the book. Along with learning how to purchase a horse that matches your social style, they also explain how to train your horse with an understanding of how he learns. The book also has chapters on pain, saddle fitting and working with abused horses. You can go to www.ridesafe2day.com to purchase your autographed copy.
You can also download questionnaires from the book at http://www.horseandriderbooks.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=KNYOKN&Category_Code=WNEW and download for free the human social style questionnaire and the horse personality questionnaire

Facebook page -KnowYouKnowYourHorse

ALASKA AIRLINES MAGAZINE FEATURES WHISPERING

Bragging on our Accredited Instructors, Missy Axton-Wryn is featured as the Horsewhispering expert in the current addition along with dog and cats whisperers. A well written article that will enlighten all pet owners, Missy represents our evolved approach.

TRAVEL REFLECTIONS

Spending the winter in New Zealand(summer downunder), I’ve teamed up with ace horseman Bob Gilkison to conduct a series of single day clinics. Saturday March 2 found us at the Golden Bay pony club facility working with a variety of lovely horses and people after riding on the beach the previous afternoon. Introducing my safety system as a beginning, Bob follows up with more advanced horsemanship which then leads to his formation riding which puts a huge smile on the faces of the riders as they perform quite intricate exercises. With riders of all levels of expertise attending, we were able to achieve our goal after titling the clinic “Seeking the Soft and Happy Horse.”

Bob publishes The Twisting Trail, both online and in magazine form. This is a fabulous publication that delves into many aspects of the equine and is loaded with first class pictures, mostly from New Zealand’s South Island, undoubtedly one of the most scenic locales on the planet. Bob is a thinker and will lead you to do the same. With articles from horsemen of every walk and experience of life, I strongly encourage you to take a look.

PROBLEM SOLVING WITH OUR TEAM OF ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS

Over the last fifteen years I’ve assembled a team of accredited instructors worldwide. One of the services we provide is remote coaching via email or phone. With a plethora of interesting emails constantly coming my way, I often defer to the team and encourage them to respond to the client as well as all of us so we can learn from each other. With so much talent and experience within the group, it is truly amazing how thorough and enlightening these responses can be.
Recently one of our team was attacked by a horse, though thankfully not too seriously. As a group we supported and encouraged our instructor and also came to some sobering conclusions about some of our client’s memories about their horses. Far too often the whole story isn’t told to the trainer so the aggressive horse’s antics are not expected. Armed with the truth, the trainer can be far more effective, knowing the whole story.

We invite your challenges and questions at: info@horsewhisperer.com

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to Frank’s Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, Frank’s 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!

CLINICS

Jim Rea and I will be conducting our next week long clinic at White Stallion Ranch Nov 10-17, 2013. These weeks are really special as we share our knowledge of the equine on so many levels. With 130 horses you will find your soul-mate and progress beyond your expectations.
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Link to clinic sign-up.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

Safe Riding Always,
From the whole gang at Dances With Horses,

Frank Bell


Winter Newsletter 2012-13

Winter 2012 & 13
Happy Holidays and All the Best in the New Year

A few points about horses and winter:
• Be sure your horses have unlimited access to good water. Tank heaters are good insurance against colic and dehydration. Ensure that the electric cord is well protected.
• A few dollops of molasses helps entice horses to drink. Old endurance trick.
• If you’re not riding horses during the winter have the shoes removed. The horses’ hooves will benefit from being barefoot and contact with the ground and their feet won’t ball up with snow and ice nearly as much as with shoes.
• Horses need salt and minerals in the winter as well. Free choice loose salt/minerals is best.
• Worming after a couple hard frosts at the onset of winter is ideal to augment your year round schedule. A discussion with your vet on performing a fecal sample analysis to get a baseline on your horse’s intestinal condition may also be of long term benefit to proper health of your partner.
• Dentistry is important especially prior to winter as feed needs to be properly masticated (chewed) to be fully utilized especially relating to older horses. In general, horses should have their teeth checked yearly by a qualified vet or accredited dentist.
• Horses can handle cold and they can handle wet, but not both at the same time. If you live in such conditions, shelter is important. When it is cold horses need to eat hay to stay warm. Unlimited grass hay is optimum but always ensure it is of the highest quality.
• Stallions and gelding develop ‘beans’ that obstruct urination. Learn how to check for this condition. Your vet is a good source of assistance here as some horses might actually have to be sedated to ensure complete and proper cleaning but it is also a procedure that can be “gently” taught to most horses.
• Tuning up your tack makes for a great winter project. Clean your blankets, pads, girths, and tack. Closely inspect possible weak or stress areas of your critical elements- latigo, girth, etc. Both you and your horses will be real happy about this come spring – Note Leather Therapy in recommended products below.
If you do ride in the winter be absolutely sure to give your horses a good warm-up prior to riding. Horses are almost always quite frisky in the cold. My safety system culminates in two exercises we call ballet, first on the ground, then in the saddle. These exercises connect brains and feet and use energy constructively while promoting horse/rider safety. My safety system when properly executed will get the horse and rider in the right frame of mind, both on the same page. If you need to regroup at any time we have a logical place to wind down and start anew. Remember that the act of bending the horse and disengaging the hind quarters gets the horse out of gear and into thinking mode = left brain, precisely where we want them at all times.
I’ve built a career worldwide with this amazing sequence of exercises as detailed in my landmark DVD entitled “Discover the Horse You Never Knew” – coupled with the companion book “Gentle Solutions” which allows one to view the actual process and then read the accompanying section for greater in-depth detail.
ENJOYING THE JOURNEY AND THE RIDE. . . SAFELY

As our journeys unfold with horses each of us have amazing epiphanies and reach new plateaus continually. My mentors spoke of this but it took some time and reflexion to really understand. Just think back on where you started with horses and how much you didn’t know that you didn’t know.
When Jim Rea and I conduct week long clinics at White Stallion Ranch in Tucson, AZ, I talk a lot about the tentacles of horsemanship that seem almost endless. That is the good news as there is always so much to learn. The reality is that it can become overwhelming which brings up the four stages to learning anything:
• We begin with Unconscious Incompetence- we’re really pretty green, bad timing, understanding, focus, etc. and have no idea.
• Then we progress to Conscious Incompetence. At least we’re now working on it because we’re understanding the THEORY, the why? And improving kinetically.
• Conscious Competence follows as we get pretty good and continue to work hard being very proactive- a very key word at this level as we refine our TECHNIQUE
• And finally when we’ve mastered most anything, we have reached Unconscious Competence. We are true masters and our TIMING is precise. Most of us drive at this level, able to talk, listen to music, read a map or gps, enjoy the ride, etc. all the while having mastered the art of driving without even thinking about it.

Such a journey. And I’m certain there are things I’m doing today that I will not be doing in ten years as I evolve. And that is the nature of horsemanship, evolving. More Tentacles you ask? Nutrition, foot care, vaccinations, living conditions, travel, training, dental. . . the list goes on and on, each with its own set of tentacles. Such a journey. I’ll end with some sage wisdom imparted to me by a true master horseman, Ray Hunt. I attended one of Ray’s clinics in Driggs, Idaho not long before his life ended. He signed several books for me, “Think”, Ray Hunt. Enjoy your journey.

3 T’S AND 4 C’S OF HORSEMANSHIP AND ONE V

Over the years I’ve challenged myself to simplify what others have made vague and complicated into some extremely simple principals.

V-Thinking
• The bottom of the V is thought
• The top is extreme pressure
• Always beginning at the bottom makes the horse and the relationship

Three T’s
• Theory-If you don’t know why you’re doing something with a horse, you should not be doing it- period. Understand why
• Technique- Learn and perfect the physical part of it, then
• Timing- Get better at it. And it’s all about the release

Four C’s
• Control- Leads to
• Confidence- Which leads to
• Competence And then we really begin to
• Communicate

Too Many E’s
• Evolve, enlighten, engage, enrich, envision, equine, equestrian, elementary, education, enhance, elevate, emphatic, empathize, . . .

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to Frank’s Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, Frank’s 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!
WHITE STALLION WEEK LONG CLINICS
Jim Rea and I have conducted clinics at White Stallion Ranch for the past five years in the spring and fall. With 130 horses we’re able to find just the right fit for our students. From experienced horsemen and women to novices seeking to gain confidence and improve their horse handling skills, the results are amazing as our students emerge walking tall and quite pleased with themselves exuding heightened confidence. Our mornings are devoted to hands on with horses in the huge arena. Beginning with my safety system we progress through the week to more advanced maneuvers, games, and horse activities. Afternoons can be hot in that dry desert sun, so after lunch and a siesta we discuss the plethora of subjects that surround the equine. Nutrition, living conditions, saddle fitting, pain assessment and treatment, typical horse problems, etc. keep our gang busy until the afternoon cools. Then we move back outside to discuss and demonstrate such topics as problem foot handling, saddle fitting, barefoot trimming, proper trailer loading, and just how to check your horse’s teeth. About then the dinner bell rings and happy hour commences.
Most participate in team penning several times during the week and our breakfast ride on Saturday is topped off with an interpretive ride as the joys of the Sonoran Desert and interesting relationships of flora and fauna are well explained. The cuisine is fabulous and candlelight dinners on the patio, well downright enchanting. After dinner entertainment ranges from interpretive astronomy/star gazing to cowboy poetry and singing around the campfire to a creatures of the desert demonstration as Phil Gonzales enlightens and entertains with hands on to those so inclined to handle snakes, geckos, and one very perky chinchilla!
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?
Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion April 21-28, 2013.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours wonderful holidays and an exceptional New Year!

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND
Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank


White Stallion Gentle Solutions Clinic

Jim Rea and I have just completed another wonderful week delving into all things equine with a very eager group we’ve now dubbed Team Keen because their collective enthusiasm never abated the entire week. The culmination of the clinic took place on Friday as our students performed quite challenging exercises that would have been impossible at the beginning of the week and had Rick and Diana Lamb of The Horse Show, filming this finale to air Jan 22 and April 22, with great anticipation. Our next week long begins April 21st. Join us and treat yourself to your week of a lifetime! You DO deserve it.


Autumn ’12 Newsletter

Autumn 2012

This is easily my favorite time to ride with uncrowded trails, magnificent colors, and pesky insects on the wane. I hope this finds you enjoying fall and some of the finest riding of the year.

Cool mornings this time of year can have horses feeling pretty frisky. It is always a good idea to take that ‘fresh’ out of them prior to riding. My safety system is designed precisely for this exact situation. A few minutes of groundwork will pay dividends later on the trail. Warming up with the fifth exercise in my system, Ballet on the Ground, followed by Ballet in the Saddle gets the horse’s mind into the game because they have to concentrate to place their feet accurately. This wonderful warm -up exercise is being used by horse owners worldwide with great success and the culmination of my 7 Step Safety System.
A few important points as winter closes in:
• Put weight on hard-keepers this time of year before winter sets in
• Dentistry is of utmost importance going into winter, especially older horses. Locate a competent vet or certified dentist
• When the fall riding ends and winter sets in, a few months without shoes usually benefits horses’ feet
• If you do fall vaccines, give your horses a day or two off before hard work
• Weather conditions can and will change dramatically so be sure your horses have access to cover. Horses can handle cold and wet, but not together. Providing some kind of shelter, even rudimentary is a good idea
• Stallions and geldings develop “beans” that obstruct urination. Learn how to check for this condition or ask your vet to do so
• Worming after a couple hard frosts is the preferred timing and actual parasite testing seems to be the wave of the future. More on this trend as it unfolds.

STAYING GROUNDED

We’re living in times that seem to be speeding up almost every single day- internet, smart phones, texting, traffic- hurry, hurry, hurry. Do you think our horses pick up on our speedy energy? Of course they do!
In August my partner Vonne and I had the great pleasure of visiting Brian and Kathleen Reid and their very special horse, a Shire named Brenda Lee in Rhode Island. Brian uses Brenda to help people rediscover the important values missing in our hurried lives. Horses Know the Way Home is the title for Brian’s interesting approach to helping people, not just horse people, but all people find these priorities.
A hulk of a man, Brian’s approach and enthusiasm is truly infectious and his message indeed timely. It is so easy to slip into patterns that are unhealthy at so many levels. But our horses tend to help us stay grounded and I truly believe this is why so many of us interact with horses. It’s not so much about the ribbon or winning as it is about slowing down and connecting. Just being quiet in the presence of horses is calming, grounding, and therapeutic.
Brian and Brenda’s time with me and Vonne was beyond special. It was a true awakening. Their message is life changing and I strongly encourage you to peruse the website and facebook presence. The pictures are world class and accompany Brian’s philosophy to a T. Better yet, get to one of these seminars.

DIRECTORSHIP- BEING A GOOD LEADER

Horses being herd animals are innately content to NOT make big decisions. They would much rather allow the strong alpha mare or passive leader to take control and follow. When this has been the norm for some time, many horses become very uncomfortable and downright insecure when that leadership disappears. When we step in as the strong confident director and ask for our horses to listen and follow our lead, we must be prepared. From a position of strength our horses prefer a proactive, not reactive leader. Reactive is after the fact- LATE. Proactive is one of the most important concepts in horsemanship and is all about good strong leadership, timing, and anticipation.
Some years ago I was conducting a clinic in Colorado. A highly competent endurance rider could not get his horse to stand still; not surprising since travelling high speed was the norm. I mounted the horse and put him right to work doing very remedial work- backing, simple turns on the forehand and haunches, half-passing, asking for the head in each direction, etc. and all with crisp releases the moment the horse complied. After a few minutes of this busy work I dropped the reins and had a horse that suddenly PREFERRED TO STAND QUIETLY.
You see, I had a lot of options besides only fast forward. I did not need to run breakneck to tax this horse’s energy. In a very small area and in a very short time I was able to give this lovely gelding enough to keep him so busy that all he wanted to do was rest. Most importantly my timing and leadership were accurate and highly effective.
With many horses, especially young ones, “the idle mind is the devil’s playground.” A busy horse seldom gets into trouble because there is no time to do so. Some horse need almost constant jobs to keep them out of trouble. If you’re searching for ideas while mounted, that can be far too late.
I’ve developed a logical approach to keeping a horse busy when ideas and lesson plans are lacking all the while improving the horse’s athletic ability AND promoting horse and rider safety.
This logical approach is well explained in a variety of our educational materials to include – Discover the Horse You Never Knew my landmark DVD, the best place to begin. Communication in the Saddle delves into the basics of riding and just what your mind, body, hands, and legs need to be doing to communicate effectively.

3 T’S AND C’S OF HORSEMANSHIP AND ONE V

Over the years I’ve challenged myself to simplify what others have made vague and complicated into some extremely simple principals.

V-Thinking
• The bottom of the V is thought
• The top is extreme pressure
• Always beginning at the bottom makes the horse and the relationship

Three T’s
• Theory-If you don’t know why you’re doing something with a horse, you should not be doing it- period. Understand why
• Technique- Perfect the physical part of it
• Timing- Get better at it. It’s all about the release

Three C’s
• Control- Leads to
• Confidence- Leads to
• Competence

WHITE STALLION WEEK LONG CLINICS
Jim Rea and I have conducted clinics at White Stallion Ranch for the past five years in the spring and fall. With 130 horses we’re able to find just the right fit for our students. From experienced horsemen and women to novices seeking to gain confidence and improve their horse handling skills, the results are amazing as our students emerge walking tall and quite pleased with themselves exuding heightened confidence. Our mornings are devoted to hands on with horses in the huge arena. Beginning with my safety system we progress through the week to more advanced maneuvers, games, and horse activities. Afternoons can be hot in that dry desert sun, so after lunch and a siesta we discuss the plethora of subjects that surround the equine. Nutrition, living conditions, saddle fitting, pain assessment and treatment, typical horse problems, etc. keep our gang busy until the afternoon cools. Then we move back outside to discuss and demonstrate such topics as problem foot handling, saddle fitting, barefoot trimming, proper trailer loading, and just how to check your horse’s teeth. About then the dinner bell rings and happy hour commences.
Most participate in team penning several times during the week and our breakfast ride on Saturday is topped off with an interpretive ride as the joys of the Sonoran Desert and interesting relationships of flora and fauna are well explained. The cuisine is fabulous and candlelight dinners on the patio, well downright enchanting. After dinner entertainment ranges from interpretive astronomy/star gazing to cowboy poetry and singing around the campfire to a creatures of the desert demonstration as Phil Gonzales enlightens and entertains with hands on to those so inclined to handle snakes, geckos, and one very perky chinchilla!
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?
Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion Nov 11-18.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico
Our team of Accredited Instructors will be conducting clinics in varying locations throughout the world- Clinic link

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours a great autumn of riding.

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND
Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank


Summer Newsletter

Summertime!

I hope this finds you enjoying longer and greener days as summer comes into full swing. This being the preferred riding season for so many, especially in the north country, there are considerations in dealing with heat and insects.
A few points about horses and summertime:

• Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample clean water. A dollop of molasses will make the water more enticing for those less-inclined-to-drink horses
• Horses will sweat more in the summer and in work. Be sure to have loose salt and minerals readily available
• Some kind of shade gives horses relief from that intense penetrating sun
• Do your horse’s feet need attention? They grow faster in the summer
• This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam performed on your horse if you haven’t done so already. Summer and fall are the seasons for weight gain for older horses. Deterioration in health and body condition of older horses can often be traced to improper dental care so they should receive particular attention
• This is prime bug season and some of these pesky insects can drive horses to the brink. More on this in the column to the right

When you ride in the summer be absolutely sure to give your horses a good warm-up prior to riding as mornings can be quite cool. Horses are almost always quite frisky in the cold. My safety system culminates in two exercises we call ballet, first on the ground, then in the saddle. These exercises connect brains and feet and use energy constructively while promoting horse/rider safety. When properly executed these two exercises will get the horse and rider in the right frame of mind, both on the same page. If you need to regroup at any time we have a logical place to wind down and start anew. This time on the ground prior to riding is also a good time to make sure your horse is well, both physically and mentally. Knowing your horses well, problems can be noted and dealt with prior to riding. Sometimes our horses just aren’t quite right and better to find out before mounting up.

FITNESS/FAIRNESS
Ever push yourself too hard too early and end up real sore the next day? I sure have and usually ask myself why I didn’t ease into such demanding exercise. Same with our horses. Those first rides of the spring and summer should be fitness rides, not marathons! It doesn’t take too many rides to help our horses muscle up, but most importantly we must be fair about it.
If your horses live in hilly country and are active, they’ll most likely be maintaining a reasonable level of fitness. Conversely, if your horses live in a flat paddock and aren’t moving or exercising much, be fair about your riding program. I truly believe the equestrians who get into the mind and body of their horses are the most competent and successful. So pay close attention and have empathy for the creatures that have captured our hearts.
TEEN DEMONSTRATION
On June 26h I will be doing a demonstration for teens from half a dozen schools, all part of a farm safety symposium here in Australia. Recovering from shoulder surgery, our noted Queensland Accredited Instructor Ken Anderson will be doing the riding as I assist with narration. Ken will be working with a horse he met a year ago, a stallion named Freckles. This is a perfect situation for the teens to observe as Ken plugs Freckles into the 7 Step Safety System that he diligently teaches his students. Since Ken hasn’t had contact with Freckles, he’ll start right at the beginning reintroducing himself with the first step in our program, bonding. He’ll progress from there and ultimately finish with Ballet in the Saddle as safety is turned into an elegant dance that promotes horse/rider safety and improves the horse’s athleticism.

OUTSIDE THE BOX
Horses are creatures of habit. They prefer to do things the same, if possible, time after time after time. When their routine changes, some horses are downright bothered. Now this can work for us and against us. With feeding and moving horses in and out of stalls, paddocks, and barns, the routine is probably a good thing. But when it comes to riding and exploring new places, this can be quite troublesome and disturbing to some horses. My philosophy is to be constantly throwing curve balls at our horses to keep them used to change. If you ride out the same route every day and perform the same exercises, your horse will become disinterested and dull. When you change it up and get creative, the horse is infinitely more alert and involved and is truly listening to you. I often refer to teachers at my demonstrations. Remember the ones that made class interesting? They kept us thinking, alert, and enjoying the classes. At the opposite end of the scale were teachers who had lost their passion for teaching and were just getting through it. I well remember both sides of it and will never forget the teachers that really cared. Our horses are the same. While aspects of our interactions must be routine and predictable, like our warm-ups, the actual rides and training must be creative to get the very most out of our horses. To me there’s nothing like an eager alert switched-on horse that is having fun, because there’s a very good chance I’m having fun as well.

EVOLVED EQUINE

We are witnessing the Golden Age of the Horse. From training techniques, to products, nutrition, and healing modalities, the advancements are endless, and all to benefit the creature we so love. Evolved Equine will simplify the choices and explain why massage may be the best choice for your sore horse, or dentistry, chiropractic, acupuncture, or natural trim.
Choosing the right product can be downright daunting as the choices are endless, so we’ll take the mystery out of choosing the saddle pad that absolutely does protect your horse’s back, or bitless bridle, or horse trailer. We’re researching the best of the best so you don’t have to.
Watch for EvolvedEquine.com as genuine stewardship moves to the forefront in the horse world . . . All for the Good of the Horse

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to Frank’s Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, Frank’s 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!

WHITE STALLION WEEK LONG CLINICS
Jim Rea and I have conducted clinics at White Stallion Ranch for the past five years in the spring and fall. With 130 horses we’re able to find just the right fit for our students. From experienced horsemen and women to novices seeking to gain confidence and improve their horse handling skills, the results are amazing as our students emerge walking tall and quite pleased with themselves exuding heightened confidence. Our mornings are devoted to hands on with horses in the huge arena. Beginning with my safety system we progress through the week to more advanced maneuvers, games, and horse activities. Afternoons can be hot in that dry desert sun, so after lunch and a siesta we discuss the plethora of subjects that surround the equine. Nutrition, living conditions, saddle fitting, pain assessment and treatment, typical horse problems, etc. keep our gang busy until the afternoon cools. Then we move back outside to discuss and demonstrate such topics as problem foot handling, saddle fitting, barefoot trimming, proper trailer loading, and just how to check your horse’s teeth. About then the dinner bell rings and happy hour commences.
Most participate in team penning several times during the week and our breakfast ride into the desert on Saturday is topped off as one of the wranglers enlightens us to the joys of the desert, explaining the interesting relationships of flora and fauna in the magnificent Sonoran Desert. The cuisine is fabulous and candlelight dinners on the patio, well downright enchanting. After dinner entertainment ranges from interpretive astronomy/star gazing to cowboy poetry and singing around the campfire to a creatures of the desert as Phil Gonzales enlightens and entertains with hands on to those so inclined to handle snakes, geckos, and one very perky chinchilla!
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!

Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?

Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion Nov 11-18, 2012.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours a great riding season.

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank


Spring Newsletter 2012

I hope this finds you thawing out from winter and enjoying longer and greener days. Horses will begin shedding and not have the best appearance during this transitional time. . . so it goes.

A few points about horses and springtime:

• Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample water. Tank heaters are good insurance against colic and dehydration
• Remember that one day can be warm, even balmy. . . the next full blown winter yet again. Continue to provide shelter from the elements
• Do your horse’s feet need attention?
• Spring worming and vaccinations are a good idea. This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam performed on your horse and take corrective action as necessary. Deterioration in health and body condition of older horses can often be traced to improper dental care so they should receive particular attention.
• Horses can handle cold and they can handle wet, but not both at the same time. If you live in such conditions, shelter is important. When it is cold horses need to eat hay to stay warm. Unlimited grass hay is optimum
• Stallions and geldings develop beans that obstruct urination. Learn how to check for this condition
• Tuning up your tack makes for a great winter/spring project. Clean your blankets, pads, girths, and tack. Do a close inspection of worn leather parts and replace if in question. Both you and your horses will be real happy about this come spring

Warm-up in the spring is of utmost importance as horses can be quite frisky especially if not ridden for an extended period. Saddling up and climbing right on is not recommended. My safety system is the focus of my Discover the Horse You Never Knew DVD and Gentle Solutions Book. This logical sequence of exercises puts you in charge and that leadership follows into the saddle as the horse’s energy is used constructively and brains and feet connect. Feel what the horse is telling you on the ground and in the saddle. Are you on the same page? Is your horse well? Are you in a good place to ride and what is your plan? The more time we spend THINKING ahead of riding, the greater our accomplishments.
I had the great fortune of attending one of Ray Hunt’s last clinics in Driggs, Idaho. I asked him to sign several books. He simply wrote- THINK. . . Ray Hunt.

RECENT TRAVEL REFLECTIONS

Just back from a couple weeks in New Zealand visiting some horse friends. Bob Gilkinson organized a demonstration for me several years ago that an interesting couple attended. Via email we’ve had almost constant communication about gentling their Trakehner cross herd of now fifteen horses. Cor paid close attention to the techniques used in my Pole Gentling the Wild horse DVD and had made amazing success in bringing along these lovely, though quite sensitive horses along with Gentle Solutions techniques. Touching difficult and unhandled horses from afar with a twelve foot pole is much less threatening than actual hand contact. Using the withers as the settling place, the pole is introduced firmly onto the withers. Most horses need to move around a bit so being in a twenty-four foot square pen allows the handler to not lose contact. The horse usually finds a comfortable corner and stops. . . Then the fiddling begins as my friend John Sharp instructed me many years ago. Working/fiddling the pole gently back and forth and exploring the horse’s body all the while searching for the pleasure spots is the technique. Most horses settle in a few minutes and begin to really enjoy the pole work. Over time and as the trust develops the handler creeps closer up the pole until the hand replaces the pole. If the horse becomes bothered at any time, back to the pole firmly on the withers, allow the horse to settle, and begin anew.
Cor’s calm nature had a strong settling influence and before long some of the quick learners were accepting the halter and enjoying the learning process of yielding to pressure, the basis for all future communication.
Another visit was to Newton Livery and the home of Stephen McGrath and his gang of Clydesdales. After a thrilling wagon ride down the highway along the Buller Gorge, Stephen was eager to get in his second ride on one of his three year olds that he’d sat on the previous day. Available to lend a hand, I helped get the movement started by leading the filly as Stephen applied leg. Before long the two were gliding around the yard completely relaxed, a strong testament to trust and preparation. When the horse is well prepared and understands the basics of yielding from the ground, into the saddle can be a logical progression.

PROBLEM SOLVING WITH OUR TEAM OF ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS

Over the last fifteen years I’ve assembled a team of accredited instructors worldwide. One of the services we provide is remote coaching via email or phone. With a plethora of interesting emails constantly coming my way, I often defer to the team and encourage them to respond to the client as well as all of us so we can learn from each other. With so much talent and experience within the group, it is truly amazing how thorough and enlightening these responses can be.
Recently one of our team was attacked by a horse, though thankfully not too seriously. As a group we supported and encouraged our instructor and also came to some sobering conclusions about some of our client’s memories about their horses. Far too often the whole story isn’t told to the trainer so the aggressive horse’s antics are not expected.
As trainers we are severely handicapped if we don’t know the whole story. We can be vastly more effective when we have the facts, all of them!
We invite your challenges and questions at: info@horsewhisperer.com

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to Frank’s Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, Frank’s 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!

WHITE STALLION APRIL CLINIC

Jim Rea will be conducting a week long clinic at White Stallion Ranch April 15-22. I will miss this week due to an upcoming medical procedure.
These weeks are special as Jim’s knowledge is shared on so many levels of the equine. With 130 horses you will find your soul-mate and progress beyond your expectations.
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

Safe Riding Always,
From the whole gang at Dances With Horses,

Frank Bell


Winter Newsletter

In style

Happy New Year!

For those in the north country our riding may now have come to an end or changed to reflect weather patterns. For those in the south and other parts of the world this may be the optimal part of the year. In any case I hope this finds you and your steeds well, thriving, learning, and growing.

A few key points about winter:
• Your horses need access to good clean water. Tanks heaters will help avoid colic and dehydration. Secure the electric cord so nimbly horses don’t find trouble
• Removing shoes in the winter is a good idea and highly recommended by most professionals as the natural contact for a few months does nothing but good for horses’ feet. Does your horse even need shoes?
• Horses need free access to salt and minerals year around
• Worming after two hard frosts is the current recommendation. Fecal samples can help determine which wormer regime will be most effective
• Dentistry is even more important coming into winter, especially for older horses. Locate a qualified vet or dentist as your horse’s longevity largely depends on sound dental care
• Horses can handle cold and wet but not at the same time, so a shelter is ideal. To stay warm horses need to eat hay. Free choice grass hay should be available to nibble 24/7
• A good winter project is cleaning and going over your tack in front of the fire place. You and your horses will be happy come spring

Warm-up in the winter is of utmost importance as horses can be quite frisky in the cold. Saddling up and climbing right on is not recommended. My safety system is the focus of my Discover the Horse You Never Knew DVD and Gentle Solutions Book. This logical sequence of exercises puts you in charge and that leadership follows into the saddle as the horse’s energy is used constructively and brains and feet connect. Feel what the horse is telling you on the ground and in the saddle. Are you on the same page? Is your horse well? Are you in a good place to ride and what is your plan? The more time we spend THINKING ahead of riding, the greater our accomplishments.
I had the great fortune of attending one of Ray Hunt’s last clinics in Driggs, Idaho. I asked him to sign several books. He simply wrote- THINK. . . Ray Hunt.

VIDEO OF MONTH CLUB

Our video of the month club is a logical introduction to Frank’s Gentle Solutions approach. Beginning with the award winning DVD- Discover the Horse You Never Knew, Frank’s 7 Step Safety System is the logical first step and establishes a solid foundation for the remaining DVD/Book library that arrives conveniently each month for a full year. Absorb and apply the information of each instalment during the month at your own speed. By year’s end you won’t believe your relationship with your horses!

WHITE STALLION NOVEMBER CLINIC

Jim Rea and I recently completed our bi-annual November clinic at White Stallion Ranch in Tucson, AZ. With students from Australia and England, the Commonwealth countries had us outnumbered! A smaller group than in the past, we had ample time to address each student’s specific challenges and goals. There is always a common denominator or prevailing theme at these clinics and the word- Presence jumped into my mind about mid-week.
Horses read us like a book. They know if we know. And they know if we don’t. Strong confident riders have a strong confident presence, on the ground and in the saddle. The other word that applies is Proactive. Reactive is late. Proactive is ahead, leading, guiding. . . just what every horse prefers. By the end of the week our gang, Team Diesel had become noticeably stronger leaders with a more pronounced and stronger presence.
Jim Rea had brought his 8 yr. mustang gelding named Cowboy down from
Colorado. A striking bay gelding standing about 15-1, Cowboy had been pushed too hard in one of the Mustang Makeover competitions. Humans meant nothing but hard work so he avoided them. Our Accredited Instructor Carol Bachman decided to work with Cowboy for the first two days of the clinic. Her patience and empathy paid huge dividends when Jim later took over. Seeing both Carol and Jim riding a now happy relaxed horse made the week extra special for me. On Saturday mornings we ride into the lovely Sonoran Desert for breakfast. Riding simply in a rope halter/lead, Jim rode rear guard on a relaxed Cowboy who appeared to have done this his whole life as Jim jabbered away on the phone. Oh what a feeling!

There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?
Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion March 11-16 (Mother & Daughter) & 18-25 2012.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

Happy Holidays and All the Best in the New Year
From the whole gang at Dances With Horses,

Frank


Summer Newsletter

SUMMERTIME!

I hope this finds you enjoying longer and greener days as summer comes into full swing. This being the preferred riding season for so many, especially in the north country, there are considerations in dealing with heat and insects.

A few points about horses and summertime:

• Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample water
• Horses will sweat more in the summer and in work. Be sure to have loose salt available and minerals
• Some kind of shade gives horses relief from that intense penetrating sun
• Do your horse’s feet need attention? They grow faster in the summer
• This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam performed on your horse if you haven’t done so already. Summer and fall are the seasons for weight gain for older horses. Deterioration in health and body condition of older horses can often be traced to improper dental care so they should receive particular attention.
• This is prime bug season and some of these pesky insects can drive horses to the brink. More on this below

When you ride in the summer be absolutely sure to give your horses a good warm-up prior to riding as mornings can be quite cool. Horses are almost always quite frisky in the cold. My safety system culminates in two exercises we call ballet, first on the ground, then in the saddle. These exercises connect brains and feet and use energy constructively while promoting horse/rider safety. When properly executed these two exercises will get the horse and rider in the right frame of mind, both on the same page. If you need to regroup at any time we have a logical place to wind down and start anew. This time on the ground prior to riding is also a good time to make sure your horse is well, both physically and mentally. Knowing your horses well, problems can be noted and dealt with prior to riding. Sometimes our horses just aren’t quite right and better to find out before mounting up.

TEEN DEMONSTRATION

On May 27th I performed a demonstration for teens from half a dozen schools, all part of a farm safety symposium. Before starting my demonstration I had a few minutes to discuss some topics with several students who were experienced riders. I queried them about typical safety measures and heard mostly about helmets and proper riding boots, both important. When I asked about specific emergency procedures, they all shook their heads except one young girl who had heard in reading about the one rein stop. As our discussion unfolded I learned that nothing was being taught about dealing with horses acting out. While this did not surprise me, it did concern me since as riders we all deal with such situations. About then I was asked to begin my demonstration for the general audience, but assured this group that I would be discussing this subject in greater depth.

I began with a 7 yr old Australian Stock horse mare who hadn’t been actively ridden in several years. I began by asking the audience what was the best part of riding? Unequivocally the answer was- going fast. Of course all kids like speed. Then I asked about the most challenging/dangerous/scary times with horses to which I heard about bolting, bucking, rearing, etc. Then I asked about accidents and heard all kinds of stories with one distinct common denominator- out of control horses. I then asked everyone to stand up and cross their legs. Everyone standing, I asked them to run forward and low and behold no one could. Not a single person. “It is exactly the same with the horse when those back legs are crossed,” I continued and then demonstrated this with the mare as I circled her and pointed out her footwork. All of a sudden I heard a whole lot of ah haaaaaaaaaas. I then proceeded to work through my safety system noting specifically the bending and footwork that I would show next in the saddle. The mare was a good student and the teens could easily absorb the concepts. I then rode a finished stallion, again an Australian stock horse. We danced away demonstrating how beautiful the final step in the program as safety is turned into Ballet in the Saddle with graceful one rein stops followed by a snappy turn on the haunches all the while using that quantum Stallion energy to promote our safety.

Robin Stewart, a famous actor of English TV followed with a short talk on the importance of establishing safety procedures right at the get go. A seasoned horseman, Robin’s acting skills were showcased as he mesmerized the teens whose parents well remembered him from the popular English sitcom “Bless this House” of yesteryear.
Then Ken Anderson our Accredited Instructor in Queensland topped the event off elegantly riding the stallion and reiterating the power of our Safety System.

YouTube link to demonstration: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YTAMeEhNDY8&feature=youtube_gdata_player

OUTSIDE THE BOX

During our week long clinics at White Stallion Ranch in Tucson, Arizona, Jim Rea, my clinic partner and I are often asked to work with difficult ranch horses. As the week progressed the name Kansas and a previous very violent shoeing episode emerged. I was warned profusely about being careful around this massive horse before entering the round pen in an attempt to help him deal with his nemesis, namely shoeing.
Kansas must have weighed 1600 pounds and had a very stout draft mom or dad. This was one very powerful horse and I could only imagine that power when mad. Admittedly my heart was in my throat as I was sternly warned about him, but I proceeded just as I have with hundreds of other horses; I began by making friends and trust building, since my strongest hunch was that was precisely what had been missing.
He snorted suspiciously as I began stroking his neck and withers, then his eyes, ears, and nose. His mouth was tight and his demeanor very suspicious, but with time and genuine attention he began to let down. I worked thru my system which he performed well, not surprising as two of the competent ranch wranglers had instilled the concepts previously. Time to deal with those feet and I was admittedly a bit wary. Using my lead rope I desensitized his legs and then used the lead to lift each foot. That accomplished I then led him forward with the lead rope, releasing accurately at each step. Then I asked for each foot- no problem. I gave each foot a good massage and worked circles to help him relax and he did. Quite careful about his right rear, it was indeed a bit tight, but he did relax into my attentions and we finished on a good note. I then had three more people handle Kansas and his feet, to instill all positive energy and heighten his trust of humans.
About an hour later Russell True, owner of the ranch and ace horseman and farrier stepped into the round pen. With Jim Rea comforting Kansas our gang watched as Russell accomplished the task without fanfare.
In hindsight this was a case of approaching this situation with different thinking. Instead of preparing for a battle and being forceful and dominating, I approached it from the perspective of- let’s work together. Truth be known, with a horse of that size and strength, it is virtually impossible to overpower him and the risk of injury far too great.

WHITE STALLION WEEK LONG CLINICS

Jim Rea and I have conducted clinics at White Stallion Ranch for the past five years in the spring and fall. With 130 horses we’re able to find just the right fit for our students. From experienced horsemen and women to novices seeking to gain confidence and improve their horse handling skills, the results are amazing as our students emerge walking tall and quite pleased with themselves exuding heightened confidence. Our mornings are devoted to hands on with horses in the huge arena. Beginning with my safety system we progress through the week to more advanced maneuvers, games, and horse activities. Afternoons can be hot in that dry desert sun, so after lunch and a siesta we discuss the plethora of subjects that surround the equine. Nutrition, living conditions, saddle fitting, pain assessment and treatment, typical horse problems, etc. keep our gang busy until the afternoon cools. Then we move back outside to discuss and demonstrate such topics as problem foot handling, saddle fitting, barefoot trimming, proper trailer loading, and just how to check your horse’s teeth. About then the dinner bell rings and happy hour commences.
Most participate in team penning several times during the week and our breakfast ride into the desert on Saturday is topped off as Carol Bachman enlightens us to the joys of the desert, explaining the interesting relationships of flora and fauna in the magnificent Sonoran Desert. The cuisine is fabulous and candlelight dinners on the patio, well downright enchanting. After dinner entertainment ranges from interpretive astronomy/star gazing to cowboy poetry and singing around the campfire to a creatures of the desert as Phil Gonzales enlightens and entertains with hands on to those so inclined to handle snakes, geckos, and one very perky chinchilla!
There does not exist a more well-run family dude ranch. White Stallion Ranch is truly a class act!
Don’t you deserve a week of pure indulgence delving into your passion?

Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion Nov 13-20, 2011.

“I brought more back from Jim & Frank’s March clinic than I even realized. It was a life-changing experience in so many ways.” Paula Howe- New Mexico

Our team of Accredited Instructors will be conducting clinics in varying locations throughout the world- Clinic link

PRODUCTS WE BELIEVE IN

I’m not one to endorse every product that comes my way. I only recognize the products that make a real difference to the horse and rider. I use and recommend the following quality products:
• Nature’s Balance Care- Botanically based eco friendly insect control and skin care products
• Supracor and Equipedic pads. Save 15% ordering from Dances With Horses- (DWH)
• Leather Therapy restores, reinvigorates, and actually strengthens leather products
• Synergist Saddles are custom designed for horse/rider, are lightweight, and designed by endurance riders to offer optimum comfort for all parties. Mention DWH when ordering
• Forco is a pre-biotic supplement that improves the bio-flora in your horse’s systems so they get the most from their feed and maintain their weight. Hard keepers benefit dramatically
• Arborwear clothing, originally designed for tree climbing/pruning professionals, doubles as superb riding attire with ample room for us aging horsemen
• Those of you that are considering breeding horses this spring should consider purchasing accredited instructor Bob Claymier’s “Complete Guide to Horse Breeding, Foaling and Foal Training”. This 3 DVD 4 hour set is likely the most comprehensive guide available and takes one through selecting the right mares and stallions all the way along to weaning the foal produced on the other end. Additional information can be found at – www.desert-rose-arabians.com.
• Schreiner’s Herbal Solution- A highly effective topical application endorsed by vets worldwide that speeds up healing dramatically
• Thrive Horse Feeds- for the very best in nutrition especially for hard keepers

TRAILER LOADING and PROBLEM SOLVING DVDs

Each quarterly newsletter I will be highlighting several DVD’s in my audio/visual library.

Is Trailer Loading your horse a stress free event or the opposite? Using a variety of five horses, trailers, and seasons I clearly explain how to prepare your horse for a road trip. Teaching horses to drive is the fourth step in the program and is beneficial to loading with ease and safely. Tips on tying, unloading, driving, and inside the trailer safety will help you load with ease.
Solving 7 Common Horse Problems includes valuable information for- Catching the difficult horse, pull-back (when tied), ears and clippers, proper foot handling, proper bitting, hard to bit, and barn sour/herd bound horses make this award winning piece a ” must have” for every aspiring horse trainer.
TWO NEW ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS

We are overjoyed to announce the addition of two new Accredited Instructors to our team. Congratulations to Jim Dawson of Arkansas and J.C. Hobbs, assistant head wrangler, White Stallion Ranch. With Carol Bachman and J.C. at White Stallion Ranch, our vision is becoming reality as horses and riders mutually benefit.
Our Accredited Instructors help riders achieve heightened levels of confidence and safety while establishing a safe place to regroup as necessary. We invite you to look into our Accreditation Program.

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours a great riding season.

Remember- The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

In Spirit,

Frank

Please join Frank Bell’s Gentle Solutions Group on Facebook


Out of Control Horses

Hello Fellow Equestrians:
Thanks for your recent feedback concerning out of control horses.
Statistics consistently concur that 70-75% of horse accidents involve falling from the horse. More often than not the rider has lost control. So the important question is how to maintain and regain that control? Bending and circling the horse is far and away the most consistent answer from you. Why?
• Bending/circling brings the horse back into thinking mode, from irrational/flight to rational/thinking
• Simultaneously and as importantly, the power is taken from the horse as the hind end is disengaged, thus turning off the engine/power
Bolting, bucking, rearing can be controlled using these very simple maneuvers that every single person mounting a horse should know first and foremost.
I pose this question- why is this not being taught consistently to all riders? Imagine the accidents that can be prevented, the confidence that can be empowered instead of eroded.
Empowering riders with this knowledge is their right and our duty. Please join me in helping the world be a safer place for all riders by embracing and helping promote these very simple concepts. It would be our gift to future riders. The gift of dramatically safer riding. Instead of riding in fear and without an emergency procedure, the empowered rider revels in much gained confidence.
Safe Riding Always,
Frank Bell


Springtime! 2011

I hope this finds you thawing out from winter and enjoying longer and greener days. Horses will begin shedding and not have the best appearance during this transitional time. . . so it goes.                

A few points about horses and springtime:

  • Be sure your horses continue to have unlimited access to ample water. Tank heaters are good insurance against colic and dehydration
  • Remember that one day can be warm, even balmy. . . the next full blown winter yet again. Continue to provide shelter from the elements
  • Do your horse’s feet need attention?
  • Spring worming and vaccinations are a good idea.  This is also a good time to have a thorough dental exam performed on your horse and take corrective action as necessary.  Deterioration in health and body condition of older horses can often be traced to improper dental care so they should receive particular attention.
  • Horses can handle cold and they can handle wet, but not both at the same time. If you live in such conditions, shelter is important. When it is cold horses need to eat hay to stay warm. Unlimited grass hay is optimum
  • Stallions and gelding develop beans that obstruct urination. Learn how to check for this condition
  • Tuning up your tack makes for a great winter/spring project. Clean your blankets, pads, girths, and tack.  Do a close inspection of worn leather parts and replace if in question. Both you and your horses will be real happy about this come spring

From the Whole Gang at Dances With Horses- Wishing you and yours a great riding season.

Remember-  The Long Way is the Short Way AND Your Success is our Success,

 In Spirit,


3 C’s OF HORSEMANSHIP

Over several decades of working with horses I’ve come to realize the importance of strong leadership and maintaining Control of our horses since it’s the out of control horses that get us into trouble on the ground and in the saddle. Horses prefer to follow, not lead. When we direct our horses with a logical plan, we become that respected Confident leader who can then begin to Communicate well.

Control Leads to Confidence and Sound Communication

When you ride in the spring be absolutely sure to give your horses a good warm-up prior to riding and remember that they are likely to be out of condition due to the winter rest so make the first rides less physically demanding. Horses are almost always quite frisky in the cold. My safety system culminates in two exercises we call ballet, first on the ground, then in the saddle. These exercises connect brains and feet and use energy constructively while promoting horse/rider safety. My safety system when properly executed will get the horse and rider in the right frame of mind, both on the same page. If you need to regroup at any time we have a logical place to wind down and start anew.

Right = Flight. When horses go into flight mode, they are operating in the right side of their brain and departing the scene RIGHT NOW is the answer. . . questions later. But bending the horse keeps the horse in thinking mode = left brain. So bending in conjunction with disengaging the hind quarters which gets the horse out of gear and into neutral is the name of the game and the most important aspect of horsemanship that every single horse person needs to understand ROCK SOLID.

I’ve built a career worldwide with this logical sequence of exercises that is explained in a very straightforward manner in my DVD entitled “Discover the Horse You Never Knew” . . . and you will!!


Upcoming Clinics

Jim Rea and I just finished our spring 7-Day Intensive March 6-13 at White Stallion Ranch in Tucson, Arizona and it was a week to remember. With participants coming from  all over the USA and frigid Canada, we had a wonderful week of equine education and adult camaraderie. Our grand finale had 10 riders performing perfect figures of 8, side by side, in a display of amazing precision on ranch horses that at the beginning of the week were quite challenging. The next day found our gang on  deftly riding their horses with a mere piece of baling twine! Later that same day Elizabeth Vandor did a TTouch demonstration enlightening our gang to the nuances of Linda Tellington Jones amazing program that less than a week later had practical application for one of our student’s ailing horses.

Team penning, barrel racing, breakfast rides into the desert, cowboy poetry, an incredible magician, and handling a variety of desert critters all added to the excitement of this week not soon to be forgotten by our gang hence forth to be referred to as Dances With Enthusiasm!

Jim and I will be conducting our next week-long clinic at White Stallion Nov 13-20, 2011. Don’t you deserve to indulge yourself to a week of all things equine?

I brought more back from Frank’s March clinic than I even realized.  It was a life-changing experience in so many ways. Best wishes to you all.
~ Paula Howe

Our team of Accredited Instructors will be conducting clinics in varying locations throughout the world-  Clinic link


STUDY AT THE BELL INSTITUTE AT WINDRIDER RIDGE, NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA

We are pleased to announce the opening of The Bell Institute of Equine Study. Offering a variety of hands-on options with your horses or ours, this is an opportunity of give your horsemanship a huge boost and Discover the most humane and expedient approach to communicating with these amazing creatures while working hand in hand with Frank Bell.


TWO NEW ACCREDITED INSTRUCTORS

We are overjoyed to announce the addition of two new Accredited Instructors to our team. Congratulations to Jim Dawson of Arkansas and J.C. Hobbs, assistant head wrangler, White Stallion Ranch. With Carol Bachman and J.C. at White Stallion Ranch, our vision is becoming reality as horses and riders mutually benefit.

Our Accredited Instructors help riders achieve heightened levels of confidence and safety while establishing a safe place to regroup as necessary. We invite you to look into our Accreditation Program.


PRODUCTS WE BELIEVE IN

I’m not one to endorse every product that comes my way. I only recognize the products that make a real difference to the horse and rider. I believe and use the following quality products:

  • Supracor and Equipedic pads. Save 15% ordering from Dances With Horses- (DWH)
  • Leather Therapy restores, reinvigorates, and actually strengthens leather products
  • Synergist Saddles are custom designed for horse/rider, are lightweight, and designed by endurance riders to offer optimum comfort for all parties. Mention DWH when ordering
  • Forco is a pre-biotic supplement that improves the bio-flora in your horse’s systems so they get the most from their feed and maintain their weight. Hard keepers benefit dramatically
  • Arborwear clothing, originally designed for tree climbing/pruning professionals, doubles as superb riding attire with ample room for us aging horsemen
  • Those of you that are considering breeding horses this spring should consider purchasing accredited instructor Bob Claymier’s “Complete Guide to Horse Breeding, Foaling and Foal Training”.  This 3 DVD 4 hour set is likely the most comprehensive guide available and takes one through selecting the right mares and stallions all the way along to weaning the foal produced on the other end.  Additional information can be found at – www.desert-rose-arabians.com.  
  • Schreiner’s Herbal Solution- A highly effective topical application endorsed by vets worldwide that speeds up healing dramatically