I am trying to organize a Mike Schaffer clinic in nrorthwest Indiana sometime this year. It will probably be 2 days on a weekend but dates aren't set firm yet and a weekday event is possible if enough riders/auditors can attend.
If anyone is interested, please contact me at the email address in the Member list.
Pauline Moore wrote: This is a great conversation Dr Deb & Pam, and reminds me of a story told by a man from whom I had lessons more than a decade ago. This person had been a head rider at the School in Jerez, as a young man having won just about every award throughout Europe, and as he tells it 'had a rather high opinion of his own abilities'. At that time he was invited to watch a demonstration put on by an older man whose name has long escaped my memory, and was reluctant to go as he did not consider there was anything more to be learned. At the beginning of the performance, my teacher thought that his worst fears had been confirmed about the whole event being a waste of time, as the old man casually walked into the arena. For what seemed an interminable length of time, the horse was allowed to walk around completely relaxed and stretched out, and then, without seeming to do anything, the old man 'picked up the horse for the most perfect shoulder-in' that my teacher had ever seen. Once again the horse was allowed to relax and stretch, followed by a 'perfect half-pass', and then a 'perfect pirouette', and on and on, as each perfect movement was followed by a time of relaxation. My teacher relates that from that moment on, his entire life was changed, understanding that he knew nothing and wanting only to emulate the softness that he had witnessed.
'Softness' became this man's mantra, and although I have no way of visualising that original demonstration, the riding of my teacher was the closest I have ever seen to a complete blending of horse and human into one harmonious whole, and therefore his story is one I can never forget. I don't think it matters who opens the door for us, whether it's Mike Schaffer, Ray Hunt, the person I rode with, or unknown others, but having once seen and understood that wonderful softness with a horse, there can never be any going back or any acceptable substitute, we are hooked for life.
Thanks for bumping this forward Buckskin. I have just started reading Mike Schaffer's Book Right from the Start. Really enjoying it. I was messing around on his FB page and stumbled across this. Mike riding Cherry. Hope this is okay to share, Dr Deb. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MkAW81jzJlM&feature=share