Eliminating Stress in a Horse and Rider using Inner RePatterning
Here is a case report sent to me by Emma Bailey who attended the Inner RePatterning training. Inner RePatterning is an energy therapy approach that developed from EFT and was inspired by the tremendous books by Eckhart Tolle. Inner RePatterning uses heart coherence, thymus tapping and entrainment.
Below Emma talks about how she used the approach to not only change the posture of the rider but how doing this dramatically changed the horse and how it moved.
As an expert in the field of working with horses Emma uses the technical terms to describe the movements of both the rider and the horse. I love that aspect to her story. Emma can be contacted by following this link to her website.
All the best,
Tania A Prince
“From Stressed to Supple” An Inner Repatterning Equestrian Case Study
Jenny has owned Sam, a 16’2 (and growing!) black Andalusian for a couple of years since he was 2. Sam was backed and then started having classical lessons at the end of last year. Having been very laid back, Sam went through a ‘stressful’ period of time where he became quite a handful but he has settled back down now to his usual laid back self. He can still be a little lacking in concentration and a little spooky at times although not to excess. Sam is very long legged and is physically very immature. He struggles to flex his hocks, has a short stride – he tends to undertrack in walk in his natural state by a significant amount – and can be quite lacking in energy. He is quite weak behind and a little unlevel which is normal for his age and size and he consequently tends to ‘curl backwards ‘ through his neck.
Ridden work has concentrated on Jenny’s position and Sam’s suppleness and strength in walk with some introduction to the trot work as his balance will allow. In hand he has developed a little further, asking for a little more lateral work and trot work on the lunge.
Jenny has worked hard and has a good position overall but she has always struggled with holding some tensions in her shoulders,hips and back which has an effect on Sam. She is a wonderful owner who deeply cares for Sam and is always concerned about doing her best for him. This coupled with a stressful job often causes her some tensions within her body which in turn affects her ability to fully absorb the movement when riding.
Equally Sam is very tall and narrow so has some balance issues at his young age so this also presents a challenge in both his ridden and in hand work. He has finally began to fill out over the last year and is slowly developing his topline.
We have used classical horsemanship techniques and the odd short session of EFT during this time.
First Inner Repatterning Session
We started by discussing what tensions Jenny could feel within herself. Initially Jenny felt that she wasn’t particularly tense but once we started discussing it, she noted that she felt she was holding a lot of stress tension within her shoulders and that she always found it quite hard to relax her shoulders down and let go. We discussed the thoughts and feelings around this as well.
I then showed Jenny how to get into peripheral vision and how this also matches the horse’s energy more accurately as you are seeing more how the horse sees. We also discussed all the benefits of peripheral vision for learning and calming the mind. Jenny said she felt much calmer already.
Once Jenny felt comfortable with this, we then developed deep breathing, matching the horse walking rhythms as we breathed deeply in and out. I asked Jenny to breathe in for one horse stride and then out for a stride, breathing deeply in and out.
After some minutes of practising peripheral vision and the deep breathing and once Jenny was comfortable with that, I asked her what she was experiencing and we went through the inner repatterning process of breathing out each thought, experience and feeling as they arose.
Jenny started by breathing out the tension in her shoulders and witnessing and accepting that. Very quickly her shoulders and arms visibily relaxed and she said they felt really good. She then became aware of some tension in her lower back and so she breathed that out too. Various thoughts and the odd emotion presented itself amongst various tense sensations in her body and we just continued the breathe out and release process with each one as it arose. She finally felt some tension in her left ankle (which made her laugh!) and again we breathed that out. We also did a little work using the colour flush technique on some tension within Sam’s left hip.
Jenny’s seat transformed in this time. She was sat really deeply within the horse and very softly absorbing his movement and her hands were maintaining a lovely light soft contact with Sam’s mouth.
Sam also transformed, suddenly flexing his hocks far better than he even normally does without a rider, and his stride lengthened and he was consistently overtracking by two hoof prints plus he was in a correct contact reaching out to the bit without curling back. His concentration also improved and he stopped napping and star-gazing at the gate as is his normal want !
Here are some of Jenny’s comments on the session:
“ Thanks … today was enlightening. Was brilliant the difference in my seat … It’s all very exciting
“ Because I love it so much I try so hard to learn so when you did (Inner Repatterning) I just let go of everything I thought I should be doing with my seat. That’s when my seat changed…(it) was great .
“There must be so many people who are stressed when they’re riding (without knowing it) and don’t realize how much it affects the horse.
“It felt like an emotional cleanse.”