I have been riding most of my 50 years, with a 20 year break in the middle. I have had approximately 20 instructors, all of whom explained the idea of getting a horse "on the bit", "flexed at the poll", "rounded in the spine", "tucked up underneath," blah, blah blah. At least that's what it sounded like to me. At the same time these same instructors would comment almost every lesson on my "leg position too far back/forward/in/out/angled", "improper weight balance between the stirrups", "head leaning too far in/out/forward", also blah blah blah since I couldn't find a fix that stuck. Then I had the opportunity of having one lesson with Karen, who connected the two issues. She said that my "horse wants to feel balanced above all things, and when she feels me being balanced on top, she can feel free to relax into the bit". I was partially able to take in the information during the lesson, but ruminated on the idea on the flight home and during my next several days. And when I finally got on my horse, it was like MAGIC! She came together as if a pro was riding her! Like a horse whisperer had worked a miracle. Only it wasn't only a horse whisperer, it was rider whisperer too! I worried for a few rides, would this miracle leave us? Would I revert back to my old wobbling self? Its been almost half a year now since that fateful lesson, and I have not had a ride where I was unable to have a horse feel comfortable and confident enough to stay "relaxed into the bit" for the vast majority of the ride! And I have not heard a single comment on my leg position, weight balance, or head position since. If a horse could talk, I have no doubt they would ask for the exact thing that Karen is already doing.
"Karen Mathews has trained my horses for 15 years and has consistently produced happy, sound, and successful equine athletes and show animals. There are no shortcuts in Karen's training. "Forward and straight" is her motto and she does not deviate from it. As a veterinarian there were many horses (from show horses to pleasure ) that myself and other vets had exhausted all medical treatments and assumed that the horses would never become sound. Karen's techniques comprise of management, ground work, and riding, showing instant results. In most cases the horses became sound and happy just a matter of a few days. Their topline and hindquarter muscles are beautifully developed. If there were more trainers with Karen's empathy for horses, there would be more happy and sound horses. Karen is an inspiration for all of us riders and owners who truly love their horses."
Karen Mathews has been in the horse business for 35 years. She began her career as a groom for several Olympic show jumping riders. Although Karen loved show jumping, she always felt the connection to the horse was the main source of any foundation, regardless of what discipline a rider chose. After exploring eventing, dressage, andRead More