Balance
Relaxation
Mobility
Elasticity

“Riding in lightness is not a matter of taste, but a question of meeting certain criteria that are essential to keeping the horse’s body fully functional.” Sonja Weber

My services –
training from the basics
up to Haute École

The 3-year trainer training for 6-8 participants is logically and didactically conceptualised, clearly structured and absolutely horse-oriented (“equicentred”). Truly tailoring the training content to each horses necessitates certain prerequisites in the development of the teaching content. The systematic development of a fixed curriculum usually entails a loss of quality, because standardising the content means to generalise and thus simplify it. To prevent this, the underlying parameters of the training such as balance, relaxation, flexibility and suppleness as well as activity, strength and resilience are developed here in a modular system. The sequence of exercises and lessons is not necessarily fixed, and they can be freely applied to the individual case and the current situation, which has a quality-assuring effect.

The trainer training is aimed exclusively at very experienced riders who are ideally already practising trainers. It is designed as further education, since a thorough knowledge of horsemanship can only result from years of daily practice, which cannot be the purpose of this programme. Of course, experienced, talented and ambitious amateurs who have little or no experience in teaching are also welcome to apply.

The individual components of the trainer training are:

  • Individual lessons with your own horse. It includes work in hand, on the lunge, at liberty and under saddle.
  • Joint case analysis and initial approaches to training work on the basis of concrete examples – of a horse and/or a rider
  • A concept for starting young horses
  • Theoretical lessons in the group based on my teaching films about the theory of collection and the corresponding practice
  • Learning to teach in the form of accompanied riding lessons with the participants’ own pupils
  • Reflection work under the guidance of Prof. Dr. Ingmar Maurer: 1. case discussion in the trainer group and 2. individual reflection on personal issues concerning the work with horse and rider in the form of horse-supported coaching and individual supervision. The trainers learn to deal with their own issues and also to reflect on and improve their work with other trainers in the long term.
  • Individually tailored examination tasks throughout the course and a final examination with certificate at different levels by the participating teachers.

For more information on costs and personal application, please send me an email at post@sonja-weber-reitkunst.de

!! Due to a lack of time, I can unfortunately no longer offer any external courses and no external lessons, nor do I take horses into training. I also do not have any school horses !!

In the future there will be a comprehensive offer through my licensed trainers, which you will find here. Thank you very much!

A solid training
the most important factor in
keeping the riding horse healthy

Methodically, I’ve decided to focus on the Franco-Iberian school of lightness, which is perfectly adapted to the physical condition of the horse and whose didactic qualities are outstanding. Lightness is a crucial factor from the very start. In this context, the controversial Frenchman François Baucher (1796–1873) plays a very important role: he was far ahead of his time and can be considered one of the founding fathers of osteopathy in the training of horses.

In the meantime, the disciplines of medicine, physiotherapy, biomechanics and science have come up with various validations of his work. His clear approach is perfectly adapted to equine behaviour. Provided that you can apply it correctly, his method is especially oriented towards the well-being of the horse.

Some of the principles of his work are:

  • Legs without hand, and hand without legs (for clarity of aids)
  • Relaxation before impulsion (for suppleness)
  • Position before action (for balance)
  • Flexion of the mouth and jaw (key to relaxation)
  • Creation of the correct transversal rotations, a precondition of collection
  • Working step by step – from what is easy to what is difficult (for quality)

Since 1997, proceeding from this approach has enabled me to restore the health of various horses and to keep them healthy well into old age.

“Training must only ever refine and perfect nature. If it violates nature in the slightest, she is irretrievably lost.”
Brigadier Kurt Albrecht

Horse-centric
the horse at the core
of all decisions

Lusitano Marialva, 25 years old, school gallop in work at hand

Accompaniment of horse and rider

According to the principle of working in a “horse-centric” way, the needs and requirements of the horse have to be at the core of all decisions. The horse is at out mercy; we are responsible for its well-being. If an aim set by the rider or demanded by a dressage competition is harmful to the horse, this is a far cry from meaningful training. I offer to accompany riders who set great store by training and advancing their horses in positive ways.

While schooling a horse, we cannot explain to it that what we are doing in this particular moment chiefly concerns the rider. This is why I always try to adapt the training to the concerns of the horse, so that it is not disturbed by the learning situation of its rider. Of course, this does not mean that the rider does not get the space they need to learn; in the long run, the progress of the rider is essential to the well-being of both horse and rider.

Lusitano Finito, aged 4 years, at the beginning of his schooling:
His muscles are flat, and he moves in a horizontal and thrusting manner, pushing forward. This becomes apparent in how he keeps his neck as well as his ribcage quite low, pushing his body over the forehand.

Lusitano Finito at the age of 9 after 5 years of schooling:
Particularly in the areas of the neck, the withers, the back and the croup he is strongly muscled. His movements incline towards the vertical and are characterised by an upwards thrust. His entire front is raised and he no longer pushes his body over the forehand.

What my
students say

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