I started taking weekly horse-riding lessons when I was 8 years old and by the time I was a teenager, I was spending all my weekends and holidays helping out at the stables, watching and learning. I was small, so I also got to back and ride away the young ponies.

When I left school I became a working pupil at a riding school/livery yard/stud and took my BHSAI a year later. I spent a season working in a leading showing yard but I soon returned to teaching and was the head girl in a riding school/livery/competition yard for a while. I then decided I wanted a “proper job” so that I could, for the first time afford my own horse, but continued to teach freelance in my spare time.

In 1991 I took my BHSII and by this time I was starting to compete regularly in anything and everything on my own and others’ horses. My interest started to focus on dressage and I was more drawn to the classical training methods but still enjoyed competing. Over the following years I remained a keen student and in addition to continuing the classical training, I also explored natural horsemanship.

In 2010 Grace came into my life, a kind, gentle and affectionate horse, but also anxious and reactive and she was proving a challenge. She brought into question all the beliefs I had about myself and the way humans interact with others; everything I thought I knew about horses was turned on its head and very soon I realised that in order to help my horse I needed to be open to making some changes myself and something I had always known deep down became my main awareness and the beginning of a new direction.

It’s not just what you do that matters, it is how and who you are.

I had to ditch a lot of what I had been taught over the years, stop listening to those who labelled Grace naughty, dangerous or just plain bad, and start listening to her as she desperately tried to communicate to me that something had to change.

In 2018/2019 I qualified as a Trust Technique Practitioner for both Large and Domestic Animals, which allowed me to make a connection between my own mindfulness practices and how that could be applied to help people build trusted relationships with not just their horses but with all animals. During my time working as a Trust Technique Practitioner I have discovered that it is often the case that the human half of the partnership finds value in addressing their own stress and worries before they can fully focus on their animals.

Certification and CPD:-

1991 BHS Stage 4 Senior Coach in Complete Horsemanship

2018 Crossfields Institute Level 3 Diploma in Mindfulness for People with their Animals: Trust Technique Practitioner

2019 Usui Tradition of Natural Healing – First degree Reiki

2021 The Masterson Method 2-Day Seminar-Workshop

2023 The Centre for Healing: Trauma Informed Coach

2024 Student of the UK College of Mindfulness Meditation – teacher training programme