Rachel was 3 when her mom bought her Star, a beautiful Arabian who sparked a lifelong passion for horses in the young girl. Rachel immediately fell in love with the gelding and grew up riding him around her mom’s place in Colorado. She participated in 4-H as a youth and competed in gymkhanas and barrel racing and then ventured into western pleasure.
When she was 19, she found a job working with horses at a barn that specializes in re-training rescue horses and placing them in good homes. Rachel’s boss, Michelle, follows the Method and introduced Rachel to it. “Before I started that job, I rode horses like they were Harleys. I was mostly into speed events and would just get on and go. The horses I rode were hot and sensitive and really had no foundation. I’d never been on a safe, well-trained horse before,” she says. “So when Michelle showed me the Method and I started using it and saw the results I got with it, I was blown away.”
The first horse she worked with was a mare named Izzy, a frightened, reactive rescue case. “Retraining her with the Method made such a huge difference in her. She became so trusting, soft and responsive. Her transformation was almost unbelievable,” Rachel says.
Witnessing Izzy’s progress only made Rachel more passionate about studying the Method and learning how to be a better horsewoman. “The more horses you work with, the better your feel and timing get. I love taking on new horses and showing them that they don’t need to fear humans and that it is possible to trust us. What’s wonderful about the Method is that at the same time you’re building that trust, you’re also earning the horse’s respect so that you have a safe, willing partnership,” Rachel says.
Along with re-training horses, Rachel also helps riders at the barn improve their horsemanship. “The Method is just as helpful for people, giving them confidence and an easy-to-follow program to get results with their horses. I’ve seen it make such a huge difference in their lives,” she says.
Rachel has always loved teaching, so when she discovered the Academy, where she could combine her love of horses with teaching people, she was ecstatic. “When I realized I could combine my two passions, I didn’t waste a second enrolling in the Academy,” she says.
As a Method Ambassador, Rachel continues to re-train rescue horses using the Method and teaches lessons and clinics. “It’s so fun to help people build a partnership with their horse. We all love our horses, but oftentimes there is a big gap of communication between us and our horses that leads to feeling frustrated and helpless,” she says. “That’s where the Method is so helpful – it builds that bridge between people and horses.”