Taking horses in for training at her facility on Dartmoor in Devon, Anna's focus is on working with each horse, pony, donkey or mule as an individual. It is all too common for equines to be put through a training programme which can trigger troubling behaviour when the needs of the equine are not met by the programme. Anna is flexible in her approach and adapts her training to ensure that they fully understand what is required so they can feel good about their work. This is invaluable because the way that an equine feels about their work at the beginning of their ridden life is fundamental to how they will perceive future experiences with a rider.
The training process takes as long as necessary, depending on the needs of the individual. Usually though, a horse will be saddled in the first week of training, progressing to being ridden for the first time in week three. Most horses are hacking out in the fourth or fifth week and are ready to be ridden by their owner in week six.
Unlike some other trainers Anna does her best to bridge the gap between a horse being away for training with her and returning home with their owner. It's encouraged that owners watch their horse's sessions, at no extra cost, so that when starting work with their horse at Anna's facility between weeks 4-6 there is already an understanding of how to approach a situation to ensure the best possible outcome. Tuition on your horse for two weeks prior to returning home is very much encouraged, followed by a few lessons at home, to ensure the horse and owner feel happy and safe to continue the training from there on.
Anna also produces young horses and ponies ready for showing or just general handling. Haltering colts and fillies for their first time and teaching them how to lead, tie up, be bitted, load into a lorry and have a good understanding of handling before they return home.
In the photo above Anna was riding a four year old gelding. This was the fifth time that this young horse had ever been ridden in a bit and about the twenty fifth time that the horse had been ridden in total in his life. All of this horse's training had been done by Anna.