I have known Sandra since 1999 when she attended the Intelligent Horsemanship courses as a student. I must have marked her out as ‘special’ from the start as I remember when Countryfile wanted to film me working with a young pony, I chose Sandra to be the rider. We had a great response to the programme. Within a year of Sandra completing the Intelligent Horsemanship courses and the necessary fieldwork with positive feedback afterwards in order to become an Intelligent Recommended Trainer, I asked Sandra to do some teaching on the courses and she soon worked up to being one of the leading tutors as well as our main course organiser. Sandra sets an example to us all, not only being excellent with the horses and humans but also extremely responsible with regards to health and safety, risk assessments and ensuring things run smoothly, I put her attention to detail down to her having previously trained as a chef, which may or may not be correct! Whatever, I am very grateful that she is a major part of Intelligent Horsemanship and one of my closest friends – Kelly Marks Founder of Intelligent Horsemanship LTD
Sandra, I’m just writing to say thank you, thank you, thank you. You suggested going back to the mounting block after I had mounted Rocky, we have been doing this since then, just standing and rubbing his neck. For the last 4 times I have now mounted, he has stood like a Rock!! We always stand and scratch, back up and then walk on. You are an amazing lady, a simple change, a challenge met. Thank you, Love Emma xxx
Unsung Hero Nomination – Sandra is the most positive, patient, calm and inspiring person I have ever met. She has changed mine and my horses lives as well as countless others. I cannot praise Sandra enough but I try to do her justice. Sandra has to deal with so many different people, horses and challenging tasks to solve and still manages to make such a positive impact on their relationships. Sandra has helped me no end with my rescue horse who was very anxious and due to her time and techniques using Intelligent Horsemanship techniques my horse can now be clipped, shod and load confidently, without the need for sedation. She has taught me and so many others the huge life changing affect of in hand techniques with our horses and the amazing benefits it brings to the relationship we have with our horses. She has had a profound effect on horses and their owners with her Horse Agility sessions both in hand and ridden which builds so much confidence between horse and owner and like with my horse has helped with the safety of hacking and spook busting for a calmer and safer ride. Her philosophy is always adrenaline down = learning up and is amazingly changing the way we interact with our horses for the benefit of both horses and people, reducing stress in both by eliminating raised voices and any forced actions. I cannot recommend Sandra highly enough and for the positive effect she has had on so many horses and owner combinations. Thank you, Kelly Gordon
Hi Sandra, I know it’s a little late. I just wanted to say ”well done”, in achieving the Unsung Hero Award. If anyone deserves this award it is you 😁😁. I have attended a number of Kelly’s courses, the last one being the 5 day Foundation last July. You have such a talent in understanding horses and humans in equal measure – a rare skill. Finally, good luck with the book sales. Best wishes, Sandy Grigg
Sandra presents herself very well and I knew from the start that the safety of herself, the people involved and the horse was paramount, including COVID19 procedures. She is truly a real professional and totally competent in her representation and knowledge of Intelligent Horsemanship. Her advice and teaching approach are easy to understand and inspiring. Her handouts informative and support the lessons learnt. She has given me and my horse a new sense of direction and confidence that we can continue and work together growing our relationship. I would highly recommend Sandra and The Intelligent Horsemanship Association to anyone looking to develop a better, more fulfilling relationship with their horse. I had owned Miska for 3 years, she is an Icelandic, 10 year old, 13.2hh. She is the most amazing horse to ride but her ability to dominate me on the grounds resulted in to a love/hate relationship. Until Sandra came into our lives. She was barging, difficult to lead, awful to tack up, wouldn’t stand by the mounting block and on occasions try to bite me! I found myself constantly shouting at her! Through Sandra’s expertise and guidance she has given me the tools to handle situations that might arise. I am a much more confident horse handler and a new approach to working with my horse. Thank you Jenny Everett xx
From the files: So enjoying working on the exercises, thank you. I have found several you had written for the Intelligent Horsemanship Members Magazine. I am loving the effect of the exhale and use of the pause, it is magical to see the effect on these excitable Arabs – soft eye and stillness. I am using the ‘stand’ and ‘backup’ as much as possible in general handling at each gate and going into the stable. They are all responding so well, thank you.
From the files: Hi, thank you for the super photos. It was a great session and gave me a lot to think about and work on. I’m feeling a lot better handling Daisy and happier that you’ve been able to help us 🙂 Pauline and Daisy x
B has been a STAR. 4th at BRC Champs in Novice Dressage to Music. 3rd in London & South East RC Champs Prelim and 2nd in Novice. I rode past the ‘scary’ flowers so he could see from both eyes. 4th at Bury Farm Champ Novice. J WON Breakspear RC Novice series and 2nd in Prelim. Thanks for all your help, see you in 2023. Ax
From the files: Thank you so much, it was a great session xx
From the files: Thank you Sandra, I got so much out of that lesson. Thank you xx
From the files: That was such fun today Sandra 🙂
From the files: It was a great session, thanks, the training is helping in many ways.
I wanted to take the time to contact and let you know how much You and IH has meant to me and to cementing the relationship I have with my horse and also my daughter.
I took on a rescue horse from a charity in May 2019 who seemed such a wonderful and calm boy and I just wanted to offer him the best home possible after all he had been through. We started well together and then I realised he was not as calm and as brave as he always made out and was in fact quite unsure about life. He hadn’t got out much previously and so new things on hacks and hacking alone was all quite daunting for him. He also has issues with his pelvis and hind legs due to his poor start in life and this led to issues with the farrier which led to me having to have him sedated for a period of time whilst he was shod.
I saw that You were running horse agility sessions near me and decided to go along and it was one of the best things I have ever done. The IH practices with the horse agility has been a real game changer and had a huge impact on us. You came and did sessions with me and my boy to help with the issues with the farrier and also clipping. We learnt from You the 7 exercises to practise regularly and from this mine and my horses relationship has blossomed. He seems to trust me implicitly on the ground now and looks to me for reassurance. He is no longer sedated for the farrier and I regularly practise getting him to put his feet up on the farrier stand and he will now happily accept this. Clipping of his legs has become easier and we manage without sedation. He will also load in the trailer now far more confidently. We continue to practise IH and our horse agility weekly and it makes a huge difference and is something we thoroughly enjoy together. This will continue and I am hoping to keep progressing this more into our ridden work as he still needs confidence on the ridden side. People often comment that my boy is a real mummy’s boy but it is because we have such a good relationship now due to You and IH.
This has become even more special now that my 6 year old daughter practises with me with her loan pony and she has been doing some of Your horse agility sessions both In hand and ridden too. I cannot express what joy this brings me and her and it is something we now share together as a passion (as you can see from the photos). In fact it is sometimes a whole family affair and my husband will get involved too holding props etc for us. You and IH have brought her and her loan pony close together and also her and I even closer. I will be forever grateful for finding You Sandra, horse agility sessions and therefore IH and I look forward to receiving each IH magazine to gain further knowledge.
I am looking forward to the future withYou and IH, my boy and my daughter and the hope of further sessions with You and I would absolutely love to do a join up session with my boy one day. I will also save up and plan to do some of the courses and hopefully maybe meet Kelly one day too.
Many many thanks, Kelly and Jenga