Hi, I'm Maria E Smith!
I'm the creator of University of Equestrian Arts.
The concept for UofEA was born out of my own life-long equestrian journey and career as a professional in the horse industry.
I'm here to share the many lessons that I've learned as a horse trainer, riding instructor, competitor, breeder, equine rehab specialist, mental health facilitator, horse owner, and more than anything else... a mere mortal trying to be the best that I can be for my horses.
All of those lessons have benefitted me and my horses enormously, but I want to share my experiences so that I can help others enjoy the benefits without suffering the hard lessons that I went through along the way. UofEA is my way of paying it forward.
UofEA HORSEMANSHIP PRINCIPLES
HONOR THE NATURE OF HORSES
We choose training methods that respect the natural instincts and the survival needs of horses. And to do this, we include equine behavior and psychology as a regular part of our training. We also embrace the ideals of keeping horses as naturally as our individual circumstances will allow.
RELAXATION IS EVERYTHING
All of our training begins and ends with relaxation for our horses. That's because without relaxation there is no healthy movement, learning, problem solving, recalling information that was already learned, or remembering new information. The normal frustrations of learning should be small and pass quickly into feelings of success.
We choose training techniques and exercises that help our horses to feel balanced, free, and empowered in their bodies. Our goal is always to leave our horse better than we found them, and we strictly avoid methods that cause pain, tension, and unnatural movement that would tear down their bodies.
PRESERVING CHOICE IN TRAINING
We avoid taking away the horse's ability to use their own body through physical force and restrictive gear. Instead, we "inform" the horse of boundaries and use both positive and negative feedback to motivate them to honor the boundaries. This is choice & self-carriage.
& COLTS STARTED
TRAINING OUT OF "HORSES FOR HEALING"
This beautiful 75 acre horse facility is perfect for training horses and riders of all disciplines!
Contact me, if you'd like to come out and take a tour.