Friday, September 25, 2015

The 'Extra' Fall clinic at Oreana was Great

I haven't actually sorted through all the photos yet, but here is a link to an article by Merri Melde
for now;

The clinic had seven participants and Terrence, Matt, and Kathie were there to help Ted out. (Beth missed this one as she was at Oregon 100 with her wonderful endurance sponsor Karen Bumgarner.) I will keep working on sorting through pictures and get some posted soon! Kathie was Dad's schedule assistant (delivering messages such as "Hey these people need a water break" and providing all help that she could as well as taking photos.  Our new baby boy is one month old now but I was still not quite up to a full weekend of clinic, much to the disappointment of the rest of the Nicholes crowd, who are ever eager to go to 'Steph's'!

Watch out Teeter Ranch - expect an influx of Nicholes for Canyonlands!

Thursday, July 30, 2015


We now have a website! Please visit us often at FAB Horsemanship. We are still adding features and pages but there is already a lot there. Thank you for checking out and for sharing with your friends!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Oreana Again! 3 Day Clinic September 18, 19, 20

We have added another clinic to this summer. Since there is enough demand to justify it - we are holding another clinic at the Teeter Ranch this summer. September 18, 19, 20 - save your spot by contacting Leni and getting your deposit in. Explore this blog and read the postings on past clinics for photos and more information on what you can expect at a three day FAB clinic. Also - as always feel free to contact Ted (541-212-3330) or Leni (541-212-3555) with any questions. 

Friday, July 3, 2015

Public Service Announcement Re: Training Spots

We have made the decision to increase the training fee for horses coming to Foundations And Beyond. We still do a 'through the program' price versus a 'by the month or week', the price is now changing to $1600. If you would like to have a spot next year I recommend you contact us soon - spots are reserved by the receipt of a non-refundable $100 deposit to hold your space, the deposit goes towards your training fee and is applied to the 50% of fee required upon drop off. Spots are limited and are first come, first served. We also require owners to provide or buy their horses feed, supplements, fly spray, etc. We are currently booked up for the rest of this year and have several spots already reserved next year as well. To talk to Ted (if you have questions about the training program), call him at 541-212-3330, or if you already know that you want to get a spot reserved for your horse call Leni at 541-212-3555. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


Here is a link to the flyer, 

 Owyhee Trail Challenge Horsemanship Day

Tell your friends and then come join us at Steph Teeter's on June 20. 

We are excited to be heading out to Oreana again. This event will be a lot of fun with a mini clinic, advanced horsemanship demos, trail challenge course, and a potluck meal after the ride!  There will be a bunch of arena obstacles with coaching from the Foundations and Beyond Horsemanship crew available all day as well as a five mile trail obstacle course. Come enjoy a fun day of horsemanship at the Teeter Ranch, Saturday, June 20.  

Ted will be at the Teeter Ranch and available for private one on one coaching Friday the 19th and Sunday the 20th as well. (Friday afternoon and Sunday morning are already taken.)

Call Ted at 541-212-3330 with questions or to schedule private lesson times. Steph does have horse pens available making it very easy to stay overnight in order to schedule private lessons on Friday/Sunday. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

What Is WRONG With My Horse?!!

Ever wondered this; 'What is WRONG with my horse?!!'

A recent call to Ted centered around that question. Layne Lewis was concerned about her horses recently developed behavior patterns. 
The horse in question, Harley, is an experienced (as in 1700 AERC miles) gelding whom Layne has owned since his birth eleven years ago. Recently he has become difficult to work with, showing resistance and disrespect. Having been the rider and trainer of this horse for years Layne had the horse checked for possible physical causes of this behavior. Not only did Harley check out fine physically; Layne considers that he is in fact in probably the best condition of his life. 
Frustrated and becoming even more concerned Layne decided to talk to a trainer with a reputation for being able to help with a horses manners. Layne knew of Ted through mutual friends in the endurance community and gave him a call. 
After some conversation Layne and Ted decided the best thing to do was get together and have a private lesson session to evaluate what exactly was wrong with her horse. A private lesson was accordingly scheduled to try to provide the answer to the question 'What is wrong with Harley?' and also hopefully determine how to begin the process of fixing what was wrong with her horse. Since I saw only short snapshots (a total of about two minutes!) of the lesson Ted wrote the rest of this blog post. 

The following is Ted's narration of how that lesson played out;

The big red horse trotted off to the far side of the round pen, alternating between sniffing the ground and lifting his head to look as high as he could. Perfectly normal, I thought, a prey animal assessing his surroundings, determining limits, evaluating escape routes, possible dangers, threats, etc. Doing everything a horse in his natural environment would do. The only thing abnormal about this behavior was that my round pen is about as far from a horses natural environment as he could get. So why was he acting this way? What was missing between him and his owner? I wished he could talk... I hoped one day would be enough for us to figure it out. The words I had heard Layne say over the phone came back to me, "I'm looking for answers." she had stated with an intensity that left no doubt she wouldn't stop until she found them. An intensity that Harley was very familiar with and that we were to discover was in large part responsible for me having an opportunity to meet Layne and Harley. 
As I entered the round pen, Harley paid no attention whatsoever. 'He couldn't care less if I'm in here or not,' I said to Layne. Over the next several hours as I worked through many of the Downunder Horsemanship Method fundamental exercises with Harley he became more and more respectful, responsive and trusting. He certainly wasn't ignoring my presence at all anymore. Showing up less and less were symptoms like re-activeness, defensiveness, anxiety; the traits he had exhibited just a few short hours before when he was first turned into the round pen. By the end of the day Harley was no longer acting like a prey animal needing to fend for himself; instead he was part of a team, he recognized that he had certain obligations he was expected, even required, to fill (two eyes on me please) and certain expectations in his handler which he could be confident would be filled (your comfort, safety, and rest are with me).  
As we spent these hours working on Harley and Layne's ability to perform these exercises we were evaluating and discussing everything about the situation with Harley, among the many things we discussed were horse psychology and personality types. As we observed Harley and had these conversations it became apparent to both Layne and I exactly 'What was wrong with him'.  Harley, an eleven year old, been there, done that, 100 mile ride ready, confident in his own abilities super horse, was lacking mental stimulation. His interaction with Layne was limited to 'Hello there. Must condition!', therefore Harley's perception was naturally, 'Here she comes = another grueling ride.' Conditioning rides for most horses, particularly with a focused, goal oriented, intense rider (like Layne) are just that, only a conditioning ride. They can become not only drudgery, but boring drudgery for a horse who needs more mental stimulation than what just an intense workout can provide. As Layne commented, this is a particularly easy mistake for a competitive rider to fall into, in essence 'conditioning but not training.' Interestingly enough Layne felt that she made this mistake both consciously and unconsciously. Consciously in that she was aware that she essentially chooses to condition versus train, but unconsciously in the sense that she never really gave it a whole lot of thought and certainly not in the sense that Harley might be lacking mental stimulation due to her lack of letting him be 'more'. 
While horses are very forward thinking and can and do travel long distances in nature, it is typically on their way to comfort and safety. Not directly away from comfort and safety as we often expect them to.  We have to remember that horses are first motivated by comfort, safety and food, and then and only then, stimulation, physical and mental. As with all training, maintaining balance is our job. Cold versus hot, left versus right, go versus whoa. In this particular case it was the balance between physical and mental stimulation which was a problem. Allow your horse to tell you who he is and where he needs balancing out. Some horses are office workers, some are like smoke jumpers, some are social butterflies and some are not.
Even though they can't 'talk' we can indeed learn to pay attention and 'listen/see' what they need from us as trainers and handlers. With a mutual bond of respect and trust there is virtually no limit on where you can go together, but it is our job to steer.
With Layne's newly developed understanding of just what type of interaction was missing from her work with Harley, things have changed. Gone is the resistance, poor attitude, misbehavior, apprehension, etc. Harley is back to being an enjoyable equine partner and Layne is equipped with the knowledge and tools to deal with lapses. 
Harley and Layne are doing very well enjoying each others company again with a new perspective on their time together. 
I am thankful for the chance to interact with horsemen and women like Layne who are always striving to be their best for their horses and themselves. 

Let's ride!


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

April 2015 Parma Clinic - + a few of Doc's 'pick up day' photos

An overview of this years Parma Spring Clinic. Finally, I was slow this time I know!

From left to right; Terrence on MJ, Barb on Bones, Matt on Hugo, Ted, Julie on Sonata, Karen on Abbiroad, Kathie on Chloe, Beth, and Tim on Two-Feathers. 
This photo is of one of the exercises which pushes many participants out of their comfort zone. Typically everyone is riding in the arena at once, (in this clinic six horses and riders), and no one is steering their horse! At some clinics the number of participants in the arena is modified for the ability level of the individual horses/participants but at this particular clinic it was everyone in. 

Here Ted is explaining the next exercise to the group. 

We spend a lot of time and effort teaching/preparing our horses for under saddle exercises with our feet still on the ground at Ted's clinics.  As Ted says; 'Why wouldn't I? Any exercise that I can teach while I'm still on the ground makes it easier for my horse to understand when I am in the saddle and is a safer  way for both of us.' Also frequently repeated 'It is our job as horse owners and trainers to make it as easy as possible for our horse to understand what we want him to do.'

This clinic we ended up with only four participants which allowed our teens Matt and Kathie to join the group. Matt was able to take Hugo through the clinic while Kathie took Chloe through. This was a fantastic opportunity for Matt and Kathie but significantly reduced the amount of time I was able to spend observing and photographing (without my typical amount of available assistance). In spite of this there are several pictures of each participant. Scroll down!

This first selection of pictures feature Karen Vining, returning from Grandview, Washington with her mare Abbiroad. Karen is a veteran participant and came mostly to make sure her own skills were staying tuned up. Karen had obviously done a great job maintaining Abbi's training and Abbi sailed through the clinic with flying colors! Karen says that she feels confident enough in the increase in her skill level after this clinic that next year she is bringing her other horse!

Next up, are Tim and Julie Morley, new clients who traveled down from Victor, Idaho where they own and operate a bed and breakfast. Tim and Julie chose to celebrate their wedding anniversary by attending a horsemanship clinic together.  

Also joining us for the second three day weekend in a row was Barb Clow. Barb has gotten her boy off to a fabulous start!

The wind on day two enhanced the challenge factor on some of our arena embellishments for the clinic! Plastic grocery bags; a training tool that is simple, effective and a 'scary object' that many horses will encounter at some point. Don't let the first time be when you or your child are on top of the horse!

Our two lucky kids who were able to participate - Matt and Kathie. Matt participated for the full three days of clinic time with Hugo. The experience was a big confidence builder for both Matt and the horse. Hugo will be five years old next month and has developed a lot of confidence in himself and the world around him over this last winter. He is half Arabian and the reactive tendencies that typically come with the Arabian blood still dominate his personality. That said, correct training and handling have helped Hugo to develop a much larger comfort zone and he has gained confidence in himself all around. Even in his interactions with the herd his newly developed confidence in himself and the world around him has changed his life. Hugo is a super little horse who is on his way to a lifetime of positive interactions with little people! Matt has enjoyed working with Hugo and is only sorry that Hugo is not big enough to become Matt's regular mount. 

Here Terrence is helping Matt and Hugo out. 

Kathie is thrilled to be riding Chloe! Beth and Terrence (and of course Ted/Dad!) helped her out and got the little horse extremely well prepared and through her first three rides. Kathie is now doing most of the training with Chloe (with constant supervision and some help from Beth and Terrence). Kathie has continued to devote as much time as she can to progressing with Chloe since the clinic. She has set a goal of having Chloe ready to participate in an LD (twenty five mile endurance type ride) this summer. 

Drinkers of the Wind Arabians (Helen Bonner and Robert T. Bouttier) had scheduled to pick up their horse Doc on this particular weekend and the timing of their arrival was fortuitous in that the clinic participants were about to go on lunch break. Thus most participants grabbed a chair and watched part of the presentation as Doc's training was reviewed for Archie and Helen. This was Terrence's first ever time of being the one responsible to explain, show, and coach a client and their horse through the training that the horse received here. I wasn't able to be out there watching for most of it so these photos were taken by Helen and sent to me - thank you Helen Bonner!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Colt Starting Lessons!

A very full weekend for Barbara Clow and her colt wrapped up Sunday afternoon. In three jam packed days Barb learned how to put a HUGE list of groundwork exercises on her boy in preparation for the official first ride. She also used several under saddle exercises, most of which she, (naturally) taught her horse while she still had two feet on the ground.
Before it was all said and done Barb and Bones had two rides in the round pen and even a third ride in the arena. Ted is confident Barbara will do a great job with her homework with Bones and expects her to shine at this coming weekends clinic with him.

This is the very end of her 'clinic' experience where she was able to ride him in the arena. They both did fantastic!

This is the one preparatory exercise in which Barb requested Ted to handle the rope for her. Bones is being desensitized to the rope all over his body while in motion, much different and much more challenging for the colt to tolerate and learn not to worry about than when he is standing still. The next two photos are also of Bones getting used to that rope all over him while in motion. 


When I look at this photo I hear Ted saying " Aaaanndd -- YIELD. " 

More de-sensitizing in motion, preparation, preparation, preparation!

Big smiles on riders faces are the result of all that preparation!

Every ride with this colt and handler went absolutely text book perfect. 

I just love this picture! 

Open the picture in a separate tab to really see how much Barb is loving her success with this horse.

This three year old colt is a top contender in the "I love exercises where I get to hold still!" contest.

This year's colt clinic was a definite success in terms of the progress of our participant and her colt. We hope that next year we have more folks join us but we're very glad that we put it on the calendar and held it this spring. Thank you Barbara Clow for all of your hard work and dedication, and thanks to your family for supporting you in your horsemanship endeavors. We recognize that Barb is blessed by the full support of her loved ones and say "Kudos to Barb's crew!" 
Thanks for enabling Barb to come and let Ted help her meet her goals with Bones! 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

More of the Photo Collection, 2015 Spring Oreana Clinic

Steph checking out the fit of her new saddle on Smokey just after the clinic wrapped up.

Deirdre and Carol watch Dave and Rick doing the work!

Ardreth being used to show a back up exercise. LJ was able to use Ardreth and follow along with this clinic. Beth has of course, taught Ardreth all of these exercises so it  is mostly for LJ's benefit to practice with him in this environment. They both did great, LJ will be bringing him back to Oreana for some LD's!

Rick riding Flint, don't you just love how relaxed that horse is?

Carol gets another turn with Flint. 

 Her Royal Smokiness!

Marilyn on her cute little mare!

Here Beth is being Ted's horse for a class demonstration.

Dave and Noble get some one on one coaching and the Smokey's practice their flexing!

Teacia sporting her official clinic T-shirt!