Van is passionate about communication as well as horsemanship, and his versatility as a speaker enables him to deliver an exciting, educational, and motivational program to audiences regardless of venue or topic. With relaxed humor, Van teaches practical horsemanship skills that audience members can take home and put to immediate use, using his interactions with the horse to emphasize the most fundamental lesson: the need for a solid foundation in horse training and in everyday life. From colt-starting clinics to ranch roping demonstrations, from lessons on fear, trust, and confidence to seminars on ranch horse versatility, Van tailors his presentations to the audience’s needs and communicates his practical methods and messages in a way that lets each participant leave the event entertained, educated inspired.
Special Sunday Presentation
Learn to let go. In this presentation Van will use a horse that thinks it may not need guidance and is tempted to choose its own way and simply seems to resist being willfully guided. Watch and learn how Van actually supports the horse’s free will in an effort to allow the horse to determine that it does in fact need guidance. Watch as the horse seems ask and then seemingly seek out help and guidance from its leader/rider. If you’re familiar with the parable of the prodigal son then you may just get a bit emotional during this eye opening demonstration of simplicity and free will. Remember, “dare your horse to be good” and “everything comes to he who waits…”.
Understanding Horse Talk
This presentation is all about communication. Here Van helps us “read” horses’ movements and gestures. The horse’s language may seem complicated to most because its simplicity is too often misunderstood. Van is a “master” at reading a horse and in teaching others how to interpret horse talk. Van also teaches us how to use our minds, body, and movement to communicate to our horses in ways they can understand. Remember to look for and “reward the thought”.
Basic Posture-Be a Rider Rather than a Passenger
Our posture in the saddle has a direct impact on our horse’s performance. In this presentation Van teaches proper posture, including where to place our hands, feet, and seat, and how it relates to your health and your horse’s performance. “Your feet support your seat” and “each body part has a job to do…there ain’t never nothin’ to do”. Learn to “ride every stride”.
Addressing Any Problem by Reducing to the Ridiculous
If you’ve experienced horses that are head shy, ear shy, or fearful of water crossings, you’ll appreciate Van’s insight on how to overcome these issues. This presentation teaches us to simplify things from the horse’s perspective. Things that may seem minuscule to us may be disconcerting to our horses. Van’s step-by-step approach to solving any problem helps us to overcome adversity and look at problems as opportunities to become better horsemen. Remember, “the horse is always right” and “where you release is what you teach”.
Understanding Collection, Flexion, and Suppleness
Collection seems to be one of the most frequently used buzzwords in horsemanship. How many of us really understand it and its benefits with respect to our horse’s performance? Van will help you grasp the definition of collection and will explain its purpose and how to achieve it. Most important, Van will demonstrate how collection enhances and improves your horse’s carriage in every aspect of riding. Whether you trail ride or compete professionally, your horse wants you to learn how to achieve collection, balance and straightness. “Bend ‘em to keep ‘em straight”.
Creating A Winning Attitude in You and Your Horse
We can learn from our mistakes and failures, but it is more fun and more productive to learn from our successes. In this presentation you’ll learn the importance of preparing yourself and your horse for success. Van will teach how to simplify your thoughts, your actions, and your horse training toward fun and successful horsemanship. Volunteer crowd participation in this presentation is encouraged. Remember it’s as simple as “taters, eggs or tea bags”, learn to create your own luck and “bloom like a rose”.