I would love to introduce you to the Calming technique, before our Clinic / Live Workshop starts.
I want you to have time to really digest and understand our approach before you will try it with your horses. I want you to feel comfortable and not to hurry yourself. I’d love you to have time to ask questions and think about all these techniques in your free time. I believe that by doing so, we will go through all the changes effortlessly.
Thanks to that, I will be able to use these PreClinic Materials as a reference during our clinic.
In this PreClinic Material I will give you my CALMING TECHNIQUE
After reading the previous Materials you already know how important is to reach true calmness. True calmness will be always our first objective and we will go back to calmness whenever something goes “wrong” in any given exercise.
I always calm my horses by calming myself.
I am the only thing that I can influence, so I always focus on myself. I never focus on the horse.
To calm myself I need to become aware of myself.
And to become aware of myself I use the following technique:
I always keep my tummy soft and relaxed. I never flex my abdominal muscles. My practical experience shows that flexing abdominal muscles makes horses very tense and anxious. This is the most important thing: to keep your tummy soft.
Whenever I am about to approach my horse or change exercise during the training I reconnect with my inner self. I close my eyes for a second (sometimes it’s even 0.3 second) and I scan my body looking for all the tensions.
I start from feeling my feet. I try to really FEEL them. I don’t “think” about feeling my feet, I really try to consciously feel them. I focus on feeling how my skin touches the socks, how my weight is being distributes on my feet and if it’s distributed evenly. I move my feet fingers to remind myself that they are present.
Later, I go up to my ankles, and knees. Again, I do not think about feeling them. I DO NOT IMAGINE that I feel them. I do not imagine how it would be to feel them. I do not PROJECT how it should feel to have them. I REALLY FEEL THEM AS THEY ARE. It’s very important. Because of reading magazines, books, speaking with friends, fitness instructors and therapeutists and by watching television we have our minds full of instructions and other people’s relations about HOW BODY SHOULD FEEL LIKE. Being aware of your inner self is not recalling these imaginations that belong to the dreaming mind and that are parts of other people experiences. Being aware of your inner self is really feeling your body as it is. Even if you feel nothing now, it’s good. Even if you feel awkward now, it’s good. Your awareness will expand and will let you experience and feel more in time. The most important thing is to become open and ready for all the sensations your body will tell you, show you and let you feel.
After feeling how my ankles and knees move and after collecting as much information about them as I can I go to the hips. I try to see if my centre of gravity is grounded in the area of my hips. I won’t tell you now how it feels to have your centre of gravity grounded here. I don’t want to suggest you anything and suggest you that there is “the only one and true way” of how it should feel. What I can tell you now, is that being grounded with your centre of gravity in your hips is the most stable and powerful feeling you can experience. You may feel that your hips are “empty”, and that your centre of gravity is higher. It’s fine. Try to consciously push it down and place it in your hips. Bending your knees a little bit may help you to do that.
Breath deeply. When you inhale let the air expand your tummy like a balloon and reach as deep as possible. When you exhale let your tummy effortlessly flatten. This move should not make you feel “empty”, though. This flattening move of the tummy during exhalation should place the centre of gravity even deeper in your hips, slightly uplifting your ribcage at the same time. You may feel that when inhaling your ribcage opens in three directions – forward, upward and to the sides at the same time.
Breathing that way helps you become really aware of your shoulders and your shoulder blades. Feel them consciously. They may be very tense. To relax them try to bundle them for a second as strong as you can and TOTALLY relax. Totally let go. Let them go down to the ground as if they were about to fall to the ground.
Feel your elbows, your wrists and your hands, including your fingers and fingers’ tips. Again, do not imagine that you feel them and how they should be like. Feel them as they are NOW. This is very important. To leave your dreaming mind and thinking mind and really connect with your horse you have to become aware of the reality and start experiencing it as it really and truly is. You will be surprised to see that the true reality is not the reality you imagined. It’s different. And many times different is better. Because it’s true.
Now it’s time to go to your face. Probably it’s the most tense part of your body. Try to let go. Let go your face’s skin. Do not hold your forehead shorter. Do not hold the skin on the top of your head. You have to totally let go and release all subconscious face tensions and let your face relax. Relax your ears. Lick your lips to really feel them. Again, feel your face, ears and lips AS THEY ARE NOW.
Relax your eye balls. You can close your eyes for a moment. Let them roll back if this is the move they want to do now. Do not have any expectations about what should and should not happen. Trust your body. Follow your body. Surrender to the reality.
Relax your jaw and your tongue. Let your jaw drops a little bit. You do not have to hold it up. Let your tongue flatten in your mouth.
Now it’s time to feel how your blood fills your body with the energy of life and light. You have new cells being “born” in yourself each second… there is life being born and dying in you all the time. Be thankful for this amazing experience of the whole Universe that is in you. Be thankful that you can experience this Cosmic awareness. This is the moment when I usually pray. I thank God.
During our Work throughout the clinic I will ask you many times to stop and reconnect with your horse – we will do it through the Calming Technique and my Calm with Me Cue, that I introduce to my Online Workshops’ participants. Being together at a stand (I prefer this word to “halt”, which I find rather a “closing” word, whereas stand is opening) is a moment when you kind of “dial your horses number” – you become more and more calm, your horse responds. First phase is calmness thanks to which we can reconnect with ourselves and our horse, the second phase is collecting the energy and directing it I think of it as of a one moment, because in time it gets consolidated and for my purposes I call it “dialing my horses number”. Through calmness I “remind” myself the number, then I make a call through collecting of the energy and then we “talk” via the action.
The Calming Technique it’s oriented toward only one being – YOU. The Calm with Me Cue is oriented toward two beings – you and your horse. The technique of Calm with Me Cue is the same and you basically do the same, but your intention is to calm you with your horse together, and this different intention if it’s pure and innocent can lead you to some different actions – to do properly Calm with Me Cue you need to do Calming Technique first, but maybe later some other actions will be required – like the loud sound of releasing the air from your chest that will condition your horse for relaxing with you and help him to trigger the right state of being/emotions later when this Cue will be given to him during some sort of stressful situation. When you do the Calm with Me Cue you can experience that your Being is united with the being of your horse and this is the real intention of doing this. When your experience that your beings are united, then you can do something TOGETHER. That means that you are no longer demanding anything from your horse and you are no longer asking anything from your horse, you are doing this together
OneHorseLife’s Calming Technique is something that is DIRECTING YOU INSIDE.
So you pick up a thought “I want to feel my body” and you go with this thought in the silence to EXPERIENCE your body, and you descent deeper and deeper in your body and the thought and the awareness of the thought is becoming less and less obvious and thus the thought is descending deeper and deeper as well to the place where all thoughts are born and to the place that all life starts – to the Absolute Being. You are purely experiencing your body, and through your body the Real World. So our technique is very different than the meditations where you are given a thought and then you are given another thought, and another thought. In effect of such a practice you can become more calm, because you are being talked over, your fears and worries are being talked over, but you don’t learn WHO YOU REALLY ARE. And when the “talking meditation” finishes you go to work, or you go to pick up kids from school, or you go for a family gathering and you get anxious again, or crossed with some people again, and again you have to listen to that voice that is “talking over” all your anxiety and fears and worries. BECAUSE YOU ARE STILL NOT AWARE OF WHO YOU REALLY ARE.
You are still drifting on the ocean of thoughts, instead of diving in the ocean of Being.
Many people think that Calmness means less energy and being phlegmatic. On the contrary to that, being Calm gives you access to even greater energy, simply because your mind is free (you are not using the energy on thoughts and worries), and your body is not holding in any restrains and stresses. It also gives your horse’s space and time to really engage in the action with you and enables him to DECIDE to truly dedicate his real self to this action.
From such CALM STANDING STILL everything is possible and you have access to the total energy of the Nature:
You may think that The Calming Technique’s description is only good for books and “inspirational talks”, and that this has no use in the real, every day life. On the contrary, it is a very natural, effortless and practical way of living and doing things together with your horses.
Today, I want to show you that this is the most practical and change-creating technique that you can start using today.
You are relaxed now. Tell yourself that during the time you are with your horse you will focus only on yourself. And you will not try to control your horse. Even thinking about controlling your horse will make you nervous, because your mind knows that you cannot control anything but yourself. But don’t try to control yourself, just observe yourself like a parent is watching children play.
To show you how it works in practice I prepared for you the following videos.
Please do not worry now about the exercises I’m doing with my horses in these videos. During my Online Workshops there is usually plenty of time to talk about these exercises, but even during the upcoming 2-day clinic I will do my best to introduce you as well as I can to all the most important Cues.
Now, please focus on the Calming Technique This is the most important technique I know.
I feel very honoured and privileged that I can give you this technique today. Enjoy!
CALMNESS: Darcy, 1yo
CALMNESS: Duro, 1yo
CALMNESS: Cour d’Alaine, 3yo
CALMNESS: Furious Dancer, 6yo
CALMNESS: Wiwien, 8yo