Harmony HorseWorks volunteers learn horse therapy using equine stress control therapy. Become a part of Colorado's horse sanctuary movement and make room for a horse in your heart. We rehabilitate and retrain horses. Help meet our mission statement and be a part of a horse sanctuary movement. Horse adoptions are a great way to own a horse.  Horse therapy can cure phobias and spookiness through equine stress control therapy.
We rehabilitate and retrain horses. WRIGHT-ESCT (TM) Equine Stress Control Therapy can cure phobias and spookiness and give you and your horse a better life.
Your purchase helps support Harmony Horseworks programs. Horse adoptions are a great way to own a horse. Our Colorado horse sanctuary offers many ways to help these fragile horses. We offer horse adoption services to good homes throughout Colorado.
Your purchase helps support Harmony Horseworks programs. Become a partner with a horse sanctuary, put hope in the hearts of these fragile horses. Our Colorado horse sanctuary offers many ways to help these fragile horses. We offer horse adoption services to good homes throughout Colorado.

Horsemanship Curriculum Overview

Your riding experience at Harmony HorseWorks will give you a solid foundation in the basic principles of classical riding at the beginner level. The mind, body and spirit of the horse and the human are all engaged in this process. There is much work to be done even before riding begins, work that lays the foundation for quick progress and confidence in the saddle and a high comfort level for the horse both mentally and physically. This is contrary to usual riding instruction where you go and sit on a horse right from the start without any foundation in the intricate aspects of horsemanship that begin on the ground. Our goal is to give horse and human confidence, courage and correct instruction so that when you progress to intermediate and advanced level riding, you will have a solid foundation for progress to higher levels.

Lesson Plan

Grooming and equine body parts
Saddling, saddle fitting and bit fitting
Equine body language and behavior
ESCT - Equine Stress Control Therapy
Human body language and behavior in riding sport
PEAT Energy Psychology in Sportsmanship
  Walking horse in-hand on halter and lead
Backing up horse
Disengaging hind end
Moving horse to side
Neck releases
Lunging the horse
  Intro to lunging
Practicing walk/trot lunging with cavesson
Riding Theory
  7 steps of training horse and rider
Riding mechanics Intro to classical seat
Improving classical seat
Balance and rhythm - gait footfalls
The back and pelvis
Achieving the seat
The legs and stirrups
The hands and reins
The seat in action
Riding long and low
On the bit
Shoulder in
The leg yield
The half halt
The rein back
The posting trot
The sitting trot
20 minute workout
Introduction to canter on longe
Cantering correctly

The principles we emphasize for the human are:

  • 1. The patient rider creates a willing horse. Ride from the Higher Self.
  • 2. Patience for the Self is as important as patience with the horse.
  • 3. No negative self-talk.
  • 4. Breathing is the glue that holds it all together, including the horse's trust.
  • 5. Assessing one's fear or anxiety levels regarding working with horses from the beginning and clearing them with PEAT saves us all time and money.
  • 6. Letting go of fears and anxieties in the human creates a calm horse. We will be using PEAT energy psychology techniques to clear fear.
  • 7. The correct riding seat means riding from the core, not with the hands.
  • 8. Riding from the seat and moving the horse from back to front, not pulling him from the mouth, is correct.
  • 9. Reins are for blocking, not steering. No pulling on the mouth.
  • 10. Legs are for asking, not nagging.
  • 11. Reward your horse lavishly and be happy with small improvements.
  • 12. Humans respect horses.
  • 13. Have fun and be safe.

The principles we will be covering for the horse on the ground and in the saddle are:

  • 1. Horses will learn ground manners with the student.
  • 2. Horses will learn focus with the student.
  • 3. Horses deserve patience and kind treatment from the student.
  • 4. Reins are held like silk in the hands by the student.
  • 5. The comfort and welfare of the horse is paramount.
  • 6. Horses will respond to verbal and body cues as given by the student.
  • 7. Horses are asked firmly but politely to perform by the student.
  • 8. Horses and humans will work with a relaxed body and mind.
  • 9. Horses can maintain gait if properly motivated by the student.
  • 10. No pulling on the bit by the humans.
  • 11. Horses respect humans and vice versa.

The 10 golden rules of horsemanship on the ground and in the saddle followed by Harmony students are:

  • 1. Aids and cues are signals for change.
  • 2. Signals should stop as soon as the horse begins to make an acceptable response.
  • 3. Signals should never be ignored.
  • 4. Signals should be distinct.
  • 5. A response should be easy for the horse to make.
  • 6. Rewards enhance sensitivity to signals only when they immediately follow and acceptable response.
  • 7. Undesirable behavior worsens if it is rewarded.
  • 8. Undesirable behavior extinguishes if it is not rewarded.
  • 9. The reaction to a stimulus will dwindle if the stimulus continues while the reaction occurs.
  • 10. The reaction to a stimulus will dwindle if the stimulus terminates without the reaction occurring.

Commitment: We ask for committed students, beginners who are interested in self-improvement through working with the horse, students who realize that riding is more than a sport - it is a way of discovering the best in one's self and growing in all directions as a human being through interspecies bonding and communication and the development of body strength and mental and spiritual focus.

Fees and payment: Lessons are $45 per group session limited to 3 riders and 3 horses. Private lessons are $60 per session. A session includes time for you to prepare your horse with grooming and tacking up as necessary before the session begins, so you will be here longer than an hour allowing for preparing your horse. For those sessions that do not involve the horse - such as sessions with humans and PEAT energy psychology prior to riding, a session lasts 1-1/2 hours. These longer lessons are groundwork, theory and lunging lessons. Riding sessions last 1 hour. Payment can be made via credit card, online using your credit card and PayPal on our products page and pay as you go payments are accepted. We give a 15% discount for those who pay for ten lessons in advance whether group or private. It is recommended you take the complete course from beginning to end and make the commitment to see yourself through the beginner level.

Liability: You will be asked to sign a liability waiver and undertake the sport at your own risk. The appropriate caution sign mandated by Colorado law is posted on the premises. Riding and working with horses is a risky business and trainers and instructors are not responsible for injury to horse or human when safety measures are in place.

Gear and tack: Students will be required to wear a helmet. These can be purchased at Murdoch's on Santa Fe or ordered from www.horse.com. Student helmets are fine, nothing fancy is needed. Safety riding vests are also recommended but not required. They help with impact protection in the case of a fall to protect the ribcage. Hard soled riding boots are required, no sneakers. Boots can be western or English, high or low. If low, half-chaps are recommended to prevent chafing on the inside of the leg. Riding gloves are recommended for use on the ground and in the saddle to prevent rope burn. Comfortable pants - jeans are fine if not binding (we don't need to see rear-ends hanging out of jeans). Dress for the weather at all times. When lunging a horse on the ground, boots, helmet, lunging whip and gloves are also required.

Preparation: You should have a basic fitness level that includes good stomach muscle, flexible neck and shoulders, strong arms, inner thighs that do not cramp, and flexible knee and ankle joints. If you have back pain or balance problems, riding is not your sport. Riding emphasizes the core strength of the torso and we recommend stretching before each lesson to limber up your body and mind. We will prepare you with PEAT energy psychology to clear your performance issues before you undertake actual riding, but we ask you do an honest assessment of yourself for suitability for the sport which is demanding physically and involves another sentient, unpredictable being - a 900 to 1200 lb. flight animal.



Barbara Wright specializes in horse healing. Volunteers learn horse therapy using equine stress control therapy. Barbara's artistry helps support her equine therapy.
Copyright 2013  Harmony HorseWorks
Company Profile

a Deckwench Designs website
Horse programs for children and youth are available at Harmony Horseworks sancuary and equine therapy center.