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LEARNING HIGHLIGHT

Summer On a Parelli Ranch in Italy

Starting a Green Horse with a Parelli Foundation

This past summer, I traveled from my home in Montreal to work as an intern at Natura & Cavallo Ranch, which is a horsemanship vacation and trail riding facility in Paciano, Italy.

The next seven weeks would amount to an amazing, immersive experience in Italian culture and Parelli Natural Horsemanship. By the end of my time on the ranch, I?d clocked over 300 hours of work. Nearly every day, I mucked paddocks, fed horses, mended fences, led rides, and taught lessons to students from around the world. I spent over 60 hours in the saddle, rode through forests and sunflower fields, and even went swimming!

forests and sunflower fields, and even went swimming! Of all of these amazing experiences, the one

Of all of these amazing experiences, the one that I carry closest to my heart (and that is my

byKatie Troyer

I carry closest to my heart (and that is my byKatie Troyer Herrante and Katie built

Herrante and Katie built a great connection in their time together.

most valuable souvenir) is the Savvy I gained from a green, seven-year-old Andalusian gelding named Herrante.

Aside from playing the Seven Games, I was tasked with teaching him positive saddling and neutral lateral flexion from the ground. Within a month, Herrante, who had started off panicky and right-brained, was becoming more brave, willing, and curious? not to mention very mouthy! He was my first attempt at starting a horse. We had gone from doing pre-ride exercises in the round pen, to mounting, and to riding at a trot in a large arena and even through fields, forests, and on roads.

Together, I helped him learn to love standing on the pedestal; he learned his responsibilities at the walk and trot on the circle, and also started to relax and stretch his back instead of just running

Parelli Savvy Times Issue 20

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Photo byIlka Meidinger.
Photo byIlka Meidinger.

Disengaging on the circle to teach Herrante to relax at the canter.

Introducing mounting for confidence and safety.

Photo byLara Pfannschmidt.
Photo byLara Pfannschmidt.

around like an ostrich! In the saddle, I taught him to trot with a tickle of the inside leg (through a bit of initial confusion), and he soon became very light in upwards and downward transitions. We rode solo on our first ride off the ranch, and he thought nothing of a passing car and the noise of busy roads. When riding out with another horse, I always rode Herrante in front to build his confidence with great success! However, as a Right Brain Extrovert, he still needed enough confidence to relax, stand still, and respond in a more left-brained way to higher energy instead of reacting instinctively.

way to higher energy instead of reacting instinctively. He reminded me to keep a clear focus;

He reminded me to keep a clear

focus; if I didn?t, then he?d often do the opposite of what I thought I was asking. His right-brained nature was pretty new for me, too; he taught me to be patient and compassionate when he needed to figure out new things, and he reminded me to always put his confidence and our relationship first. Most importantly, he exposed me to the most fulfilling connection I?d ever felt with a horse: I was introducing him to the rest of his life. As his development continues, I hope that the positive experiences we shared will be the foundation for a long and happy life under saddle. Our short time together definitely gave me many lessons to take back home to my Levels horse, Johann.

This opportunity would not have been possible without the support of my family, friends, and the Parelli community. I especially want to thank my host, Tanja Dominioni, and Hélène Tremblay, who had met Tanja at the Parelli Savvy Center in Florida and who recommended me for the internship. Thank you to my fellow interns Lara, Jette, and Ilka, who were so supportive and helped me adjust to being so far from home. Thank you to my generous horsemanship mentors

and friends, Kathy Knight and 3-Star Parelli Professional Farrah Green, for preparing me for this experience in so many ways and to everyone back home who encouraged me throughout my amazing journey. Until next time, Italia!

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To learn from a Parelli Professional in your area, visit professionals.parelli.com. To learn from home, see resourcesin the Reimagined SavvyClub.

2017.parellisavvyclub.com.

the Reimagined SavvyClub. 2017.parellisavvyclub.com. PhotosbyIka Meidinger and Lara Pfannschmidt. Photo byIlka
the Reimagined SavvyClub. 2017.parellisavvyclub.com. PhotosbyIka Meidinger and Lara Pfannschmidt. Photo byIlka
the Reimagined SavvyClub. 2017.parellisavvyclub.com. PhotosbyIka Meidinger and Lara Pfannschmidt. Photo byIlka

PhotosbyIka Meidinger and Lara Pfannschmidt. the Reimagined SavvyClub. 2017.parellisavvyclub.com. Photo byIlka Meidinger. Rewarding Herrante for a relaxed

Photo byIlka Meidinger.
Photo byIlka Meidinger.

Rewarding Herrante for a relaxed trot in the outdoor arena.

Teaching a Right Brain Extrovert to stand still took some time!

Teaching a Right Brain Extrovert to stand still took some time! Parelli Savvy Times Issue 20

Parelli Savvy Times Issue 20

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