Jean Morris exploring Groundwork with Charm at the 2016 ST Mastery clinic.
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Rebecca Gilbert ~UK Grade C Straightness Training Instructor
My name is Rebecca Gilbert and I am a Straightness Training instructor on the level of grade 3.
I am lucky to share my life with 5 horses, Charm a 26 year old Hanoverian x TB, Toffee a 20 year old Shetland Pony and MIlly a 17 year old Irish sports horse ( ID X KWPN), Nico a 3 year old PRE and Udo a 15 year old KWPN, ex advanced dressage horse.
My path crossed with Charm nearly 20 years ago. She was six and had done very little in the way of schooling but had a coplue of foals. When I first met her she looked unhappy stood at the back of her stable, but there was something about her that I instantly fell in love with.
My interest has always been in dressage and I spent several years bringing Charm through the beginning levels of Dressage up to working at Medium level. We competed successfully at affiliated Dressage for several years.
When she was about 15, she had become a little stiff, tense and unlevel at times and she didn't seem to be enjoying her work. So I decided to retire her. When I discovered ST in 2012 I thought it would be nice to bring her out of retirement and see how she flourished with the training. We haven't looked back since and she is growing from strength to strength, now performing all exercises in walk in trot, the piaffe is coming along nicely and collection developing in the canter work. At Liberty historically she was always a little aloof and not interested to make a connection, but since starting ST she is very open and eager to engage which is a beautiful development and transformation.
I love spending time with this wise mare and she enjoys showing students wants she knows and is very patient with them when they are taking their time to figure things out and fine tune their aids, body language and inner pictures/feelings to develop a lovely dialogue with her.
Milly came into my life as a very troubled 3 year old, straight from Ireland. It soon transpired that she was not going to be an easy horse! With nearly every non desirable trait including bucking, head shaking, herd bound, couldn't tie, lead or trailer load!
I pursued many avenues to try and help her become an 'easier' horse. Over the years we made a lot of progress, but there was something always missing, I just couldn't quite put my finger on it. That was until I stumbled across Marijke de Jong's website about Straightness Training. It began to make perfect sense that a lot of Milly's issues had been because of NATURAL ASYMMETRY!
Milly has progressed so well through the levels of Straightness Training. By following the Straightness Training system we are able to perform all the exercises of the 3rd Grade of Straightness Training Mastery. We are currently working on many wonderful exercises including canter pirouettes and half steps! I know this would not have been possible if it wasn't for Straightness Training! I am so proud and grateful to my wonderful big horse 'Milly' for taking me on this incredible journey and leading me to find Straightness Training!
I am very loyal and dedicated to the cause of improving health, joy and beauty in working with horses based on the principles of Straightness Training. Straightness Training is a wonderful journey and I have the passion to help others travel that same path.
Here is a link to a compilation video of my practical exam in all the components of Straightness Training : Work in hand, riding, lungeing, ground work and liberty.