“You have to love horses, to want to be partners, to empower them, and to engage in a conversation rather than simply giving them instructions to follow. Some people think their techniques are important, but when you put the relationship first, it impacts your feel and timing. Anyone can make a horse do something, but can you get them to want to do it?”
You can imagine how desperate an English rider has to be to seek advice from a cowboy. Well, that was me in 1989. I was living in Sydney, had an executive career as Education Director for a skin care company, and had just gotten back into the horses after a seven year hiatus. Of course, I bought the first horse I saw, which was a seven-year-old thoroughbred who had failed on the race track and been through five owners before me. That should have been the first warning, right?
Today, I know Regalo was a Right Brain Extrovert who was terrified of pressure. When everyone told me that he was crazy and that I should get rid of him, I just couldn’t do it in my heart. I felt there had to be a solution, and that was when I saw the promotion for Pat Parelli doing a clinic in my area. I saw him do a slide stop with no bridle and figured he might be able to help me because I couldn’t stop at X from a trot with about three hundred dollars worth of gadgets on his head!
That clinic changed my life (in more ways than one) and not only did I become obsessed with learning how to be really good with horses, but I also wanted to help share it with the people I saw all around me who were having troubles with their horses.
I opened a Parelli office in Australia in 1991, and in 1993, I went to the USA to fulfill a life’s mission with Pat to make the world a better place for horses and humans. We started a movement, trained instructors, shared everything we could, led the world in education and support, and continued to be on the leading edge of moving the industry forward. People obtain results immediately and are empowered to solve problems and make progress; we have given them a roadmap to success and to help them keep their dreams alive. I think something that has really been key to our success is that we love people as much as we love horses, and we are committed to making a difference.
You have to love horses, to want to be partners, to empower them, and to engage in a conversation rather than simply giving them instructions to follow. Some people think their techniques are important, but when you put the relationship first, it impacts your feel and timing. Anyone can make a horse do something, but can you get them to want to do it?
I am not the master; Pat is the master, but I am one of his best students. I’m an avid student and a voracious learner, and I have a talent for teaching since I have studied this for many years before meeting Pat. I love nothing more than sharing knowledge, seeing transformations in both horses and people, turning frustration into fun, and restoring loving relationships through this incredible program that puts the relationship first, foundation before specialization, and fosters never ending self-improvement.
On a personal level, my horsemanship continues to develop. Being an English rider at heart, I focused especially on how to bridge the natural horsemanship foundation to dressage and jumping. This quest brought me together with dressage master Walter Zettl (the guardian angel of dressage horses), Luis Lucio, and more recently, Christoph Hess. In developing my dressage training and riding skills, I have been blessed with the opportunity to explore how our program and the Scale of Training connect. As a result, I’ve made some major breakthroughs in training horses and people for more refinement in subjects such as contact, precision riding, and a training sequence to bring a horse “together” naturally. I’ve also had the privilege of learning from top riders and people such as Mette Larsen, biomechanics experts, and Janice Dulak who specializes in body awareness through Pilates for Dressage.
My specialties within the Parelli program are horse psychology, horsenality (I developed the breakthrough Horsenality model), fluidity as a rider, leadership, finesse, and of course teaching. I develop my own horses to become Parelli super horses for inspirational demonstrations, and I’m passionate about teaching and sharing as much as I can to make it easier for people to find joy and harmony with their horses.
“Linda is an amazing instructor. She is able to adapt to everyone’s level and teach in a way that stretches you but keeps you in a learning frame of mind. The instruction that I received from her was so fantastic. It was way more than I expected and was beyond anything I could have imagined. I learned so much! Thank you, Linda, for taking the time to teach us and for your dedication!”
“Linda is an excellent teacher. She was incredibly understanding and patient with those of us who lack confidence—the rider and the horse. Her gentle manner allowed me to relax, take the information, and process it. Thanks!”
“Linda’s ability to teach at each person’s level is awesome. She inspires you to do better, think more, and feel for the horse. She is the best instructor I have ever had.”
“This was one of the best courses I have ever taken. Linda is always watching us, helping us, instructing us, and correcting us. Loved this course! I learned lots of new things instead of ‘the same ol’ thing.’ I loved her simulations—this was a GREAT class.”