No matter where life has taken Mark, horses have always been part of his journey. His family enjoyed riding horses and started him off with a Shetland pony when he was a young boy. By the time he was a teenager, Mark had moved on to galloping down polo fields. Over the years, he’s tried his hand at a variety of disciplines and worked cattle when he lived on a ranch in Texas. “No matter where I moved around in life, horses have been a part of it in some way or another,” he says.
The Colorado horseman discovered the Method by way of his farrier after he’d purchased a green-broke 2 ½-year-old. “Up until that point, I’d mostly ridden horses that were 10 to 15 years of age and were well-trained. Even though this horse was green-broke, I figured, ‘I’m a cowboy. I know how to ride. What can be so hard?’ So I went ahead and got him,” Mark says.
It wasn’t long after he had the horse at home that Mark realized he’d taken on more than he’d bargained for. His farrier recognized his frustration and recommended that Mark look into Downunder Horsemanship. “I researched Clinton online and I figured I’d give his method a shot,” Mark says.
Mark started training the gelding with the Fundamentals, and before long, his frustration was replaced by a feeling of accomplishment and his horse transformed into a well-mannered, respectful partner. “If you apply the Method, it will work for you in a very functional manner. I’ve used it on multiple horses, and now, when I see a horse bucking or being pushy or exhibiting any other behavior problem, I don’t see a problem. I see a symptom of a cause. There’s a hole there somewhere in the horse’s foundation. If you back up and fix it, the problem will go away,” Mark says.
As a Method Ambassador, Mark is passionate about bridging the gap between people who love horses and horses that are misunderstood. “We have a tendency to put human emotions into horses. We think that just because we love them, take care of them and treat them with respect, they’ll do that in kind to us. That’s not the case, and often leads to frustration. I experienced that myself,” Mark says. “Educating the public on how to have a better partnership with their horses is my ultimate goal.”