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  • Writer's pictureRachel Kerr

Lesson #4: We are always learning! What 2020 has taught me so far, in equine terms.

This seems like a pretty obvious statement, but 2020 is turning out to be a pretty odd, in fact horrible year. I’m someone who likes making plans, and yet this currently seems to be a pretty impossible thing to do. Now, in the grand scheme of things horses seem to be pretty insignificant compared to much of what 2020 is throwing out, (unless of course your livelihood depends upon them) and everyone has their own multiple and often complex challenges to deal with at the moment. For me, and I am pretty sure many others, the consequences of 2020 are having multiple trickle down effects, like a tiny grain of sand shifting that is slowly turning into an avalanche of change. Personally, my plans for the year, and maybe multiple years ahead have completely gone out the window, which means learning, adjusting and reflecting. Some days the instability this gets me down, other days I just think well this is an opportunity. So what have I learned so far?

  • My appetite to learn is continually growing

Both from a theory and practical point of view I just keep finding more and more to learn. I am very lucky to be surrounded by people who have vast experience and are happy to share it with me. Thank you, I hope you know who you are.

  • Plans have to be flexible

Things change, sometimes in the blink of an eye and that is just how life is. I’ve learned lately that you have to be able to adapt, adapt quickly and try and anticipate changes otherwise situations roll straight over you. Even the best laid plans have to be flexible, especially with horses where there is so much unpredictability, and that is ok.

  • Live in the moment

I’ve been very lucky to find myself in a position to ride some beautiful and talented horses. I now know I should have appreciated every second I had with them rather than worry about/anticipate what might happen in the future.

  • There is a whole field of new knowledge to be absorbed

Thanks to Patricia Lincourt I have become fascinated by the field of scientific behavioural analysis and how this affects the way we work with and train horses. This has been a real journey of understanding for me and I cannot wait to learn more.

  • Self belief is important

I really had to challenge myself with riding Bob, he’s a big, emotional beast and I really questioned my ability to ride him. Yet he taught me so much and was so tolerant of my learning curve I really felt my ability grow. Believe me we had some hair raising moments but guess what? I dealt ok with them and am still here to reflect on things. So thank you Bob, Jackie and Pat for believing in me.

A year for reflection it is, but for now here is some video of Bob just doing his thing and looking beautiful at the same time.

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Aug 03, 2020

Thank you for sharing your adventures with bob I have enjoyed reading and watching them! I am lucky enough to have bob on lease. My name is Elyse Hart. I grew up riding and took a hiatus for the better part of 17 years. During that time I rode for periods but never with much regularity. Cut to present times... I wanted to dive back into what I love after finally being healthy enough. Bob has been such a unicorn for me. He gives me confidence but makes me work for it and goes off proper aids which reinforces my learning. Although he can be spooky I feel he is honest which has not always been my experience with other…


Aug 03, 2020

Love Rachel's writing style and following her journey with the help of all the horses here at Lincourt Stables, with Bob as big leap for her. I think this is very valuable for me to read. It takes courage to follow where the horses lead us. But always worth it. This is also a two way street with Bob benefiting from Rachel's dive into positive reinforcement techniques. Bob has become more intuitive and a great problem solver. He has developed a trust with several riders and some skills to cope and recover from what the day throws at him. Life is very exciting for Bob. The future is bright for both Rachel and Bob.

Patricia Lincourt

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