Western and English Riding Instruction
and Hippology, the study of horses

Instructors:  Barbara and Joseph Kostelnik
Assistant: J. Solomon Kostelnik

Working with horses develops many personal qualities that last a lifetime:
self-confidence -- responsibility -- kindness -- fitness --
 physical and emotional wellness --- plus, it's so much fun!
(This site was created and is being maintained using MS FrontPage. 
That program is no longer supported by MS nor our web service provider,
so it's challenge trying to keep everything properly working...)


Balanced Seat

What is "Horsemanship"?

To be a horseman or a horsewoman is to be more than a mere horseback rider. A horseman or horsewoman knows horses inside and out, cares about them, understands them, and respects them. Horses know, understand and respect the true horseman or horsewoman.

That's why our facility is not called a "riding school." If you come here expecting to find your horse tacked up and ready to ride, and to ride around on his back for an hour, then get off, hand the reins to someone else, and leave, you will be disappointed.

Or, perhaps, you will get a happy surprise! You will get to KNOW these large animals that have served humanity for thousands of years. You'll understand why they should be cared for, ridden, and treated in certain ways, because of their very nature -- how they were created. You'll learn what God says about them.

You'll learn how to keep horses healthy in body, mind and soul. And because of that, you'll have a much better experience with horses than a mere "rider" would!

What is Natural Horsemanship?
For most of recorded history, humans have been using horses. In the beginning, it seems they only used them for food. Then they figured out how to use them to pull things, so that the humans wouldn't have to carry such heavy loads. Some civilizations began actually riding them sooner than others. We don't know, at this time, how those earliest riders treated their horses.

What we do know is that long ago, a Greek philosopher named Xenophon said that people should treat their horses better than they then did. Not everyone heard what he had said, though, and not everyone believed him. For most of recorded history, most horses were treated very roughly, almost as though they were humanity's enemies that must be defeated and enslaved.

Some training and riding schools in Europe, Africa and Asia taught kinder methods, which they claimed produced better long-term results. Some of these ideas were brought to America. But often, especially in the wildest, frontier parts of America, horses were raised practically wild, in herds, with no human contact except perhaps to be chased from one area to another.  Then at a certain age they were caught and "broken" to human use. Some of the ways in which this was done should not even be printed.

The followers of the kinder ways kept using them, but many people did not have access to the formal horse training by which they were passed down.  So, some learned other ways.  Many of them made up their own ways; often they were short-cuts, because time was a rare luxury.  Some of those ways were crueler, some kinder.

Successful horse trainers often kept their ways secret, so that they could demand money for using them. Some pretended, or were thought, to use magic words whispered in the horse's ear; they were called "horse whisperers". Some did teach their "tricks" to others; some wrote books about them. When trainers who had been using the common, rough ways found out about these methods, they thought they were amazing.

Some studied horses in their more natural, herd state - including wild herds -- and applied some ideas they got from that. They called themselves "natural" horsemen.

SUPER-natural Horsemanship?

"In Him we live, and move, and have our being" and "we are His offspring", as ancient Greek poets and the apostle Paul said (Acts 17:28).  So, we went to the Maker of horses, to see what He says about them. We believe in a God who created the heavens and the Earth. We believe that we can read His actual words in the Bible. We have proved it in many areas of life, and found it to be exactly what it claims to be - God's Word. We have an ancient, inspired, "horse training guide" !

The Bible says, in the book of Job, that war horses are fearless and powerful. God Himself said these words to Job:

"Hast thou given the horse strength? hast thou clothed his neck with thunder? Canst thou make him afraid as a grasshopper? the glory of his nostrils is terrible. He paweth in the valley, and rejoiceth in his strength: he goeth on to meet the armed men. He mocketh at fear, and is not affrighted; neither turneth he back from the sword. The quiver rattleth against him, the glittering spear and the shield. He swalloweth the ground with fierceness and rage: neither believeth he that it is the sound of the trumpet. He saith among the trumpets, Ha, ha; and he smelleth the battle afar off, the thunder of the captains, and the shouting." (Job chapter 39, verses 19 through 25.)

In the book of Proverbs, King Solomon, the wisest (and richest!) man who ever lived, says this about horses:

"A whip for the horse, a bridle for the burro, and a rod for the foolís back."
( Proverbs, chapter 26, verse 3.)

And the apostle James says:

"Behold, we put bits in the horsesí mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body." (James, chapter 3, verse 3)

The Bible mentions horses many, many times. It, and common sense, tell us that we are not horses, and horses would not expect us to be like them. Perhaps it even confuses them if we try to act like them!

So, if we look at how successful the kinder, formal training methods of the past hundreds of years have been; and then if we take God Himself into account, we come up with something even better than "natural horsemanship" :

SUPER-Natural Horsemanship!

For a more in-depth explanation, please contact Pastor Barb or Pastor Joe (Kostelnik) directly. We're both ordained, non-denominational, Spirit-filled ministers of the Gospel, as well as "Super-Natural" horse trainers and riders.

Pastor Barb: bakostelnik@gmail.com     or you can text me at:  513-356-2817

Pastor Joe: drkostelnik@gtm.org     Pastor Joe's church office: 513-662-6220

Home ] Up ]
Safety ] Balanced Seat ] [ SUPER- ] Resources ] Helmets ]

CONTACT INFO: you may EMAIL or PHONE Barbara at 513-385-6735 (or text at 513-356-2817)
The stable is on Blue Rock Road, which is named after Blue Rock Creek,
replete with slate and shale, which is more or less ... "Blue"!