Breathing and Equienergetics
Here at Live and Breathe Horses we believe that the breathe is the most subtle form of communication to guide the horse and the most natural way to connect. Learning to use the breathe effectively has many advantages. By helping us be in the present moment we can aim at stilling the mind and dealing with our emotions. It is also a simple way to help us be aware of our body language and posture, both of which have a huge influence on the horse. This works equally well on the ground or in the saddle and means we don’t need to remember a list of instructions. All that is necessary can be incorporated into an effective breath which avoids the problem of over thinking and allows us to get into flow.
Importantly for the rider, we incorporate relaxation of the jaw into our breathe training. Relaxing the jaw allows our pelvis to also be more relaxed so it can follow the movements of the horse harmoniously. To achieve the ideal situation where the horse has a relaxed and mobile jaw, the same must come first from the rider.
What is it Equienergetics ?
Equienergetics is our own innovative training which we use throughout all our work here at La Luz. It has been developed by Susan from her decades of experience working with horses and people combined with the most relevant aspects of her training in Bioenergetics, Yoga and Breathing , Alexander Technique and Body Mapping, Martial Arts, Flamenco Dancing and Meditation.
Equienergetics is a way of understanding our relating to horses in terms of the body and it’s energetic processes. Production of energy through breathing and metabolism and discharge of energy through movement are the basic functions of life. How much energy we have and how we use it determines how we respond to life situations ( and horses , of course ). We can cope more effectively if we have more energy which can be freely translated into movement and expression .
“Energy is everything and that’s all there is to it. Match the frequency of the reality you want and you cannot help but get that reality. It can be no other way. This is not philosophy. This is physics “ Albert Einstein
So on the same principle if we can match our energy to that of the horse we can make authentic and total connections
Why does it work ?
Fluidity – at birth we are in our most alive and fluid state with the other extreme being total rigidity in death when rigor mortis sets in. We cannot avoid the rigidity that comes with age but we can go a long way to avoid the rigidity due to chronic muscular tension from unresolved emotional conflict. As we become more fluid in our movement we can mirror the horse with all the qualities we admire – graceful, powerful, intuitive, natural so we create a way to relate to the horse on his level.
Awareness that this fluidity is not just a physical thing -
Body and mind function identically – what we think affects how we feel and visa versa on a conscious level. On a deeper level both thinking and feeling are conditioned by energy factors. Using our body language to comunicate with the horse puts us in a natural posture which in turn has the effect of stilling the mind.
Our breath responds in kind to how we feel, when we are sad we sigh, when we are excited our breath becomes excited. So our work with the breath is a simple and effective way to influence the whole energetic process which in turn affects our state of aliveness.
Along the path to fluidity we resolve emotional conflicts releasing our potential for pleasure and joy in living. Horses go a long way to help and guide us through this process.
Why use it ?
to help students be more aware how their energy and posture affect the horses from the ground and in the saddle. Then to learn how to use this new information to create a deeper natural connection with horses. Practicing this work help us to reconnect with our intuition, aliveness and live in the present moment – of course horses are excellent role models for all of these !
Horses are authentic and total in all they do and will respond positively to humans who are harmonious in their being . This gives us a unique opportunity to be more attentive, mindful and conscious in all that we do. Through this work we can increases our energy and aliveness. Horses also inspire us to connect with our own power , grace and beauty, qualities which we admire in them. They also help us to awaken all of our senses.
The exercises of deep breathing, grounding , stretching, centering and feeling the vibrations in the body can be done by everyone and are also helpful to general wellbeing because we increase our energy, spontaneity , unity and integrity.
We do exercises on the ground as preparation then with the horse at liberty. Here we get accurate nonjudgmental feedback which we can relate to directly.
When we are riding we can help our horse tremendously by being aware of the flow of energy through both so we practice feeling the horse, his movements, his tensions and his breath. Being fluid and vibrant in our mind and body allows the horse to move in a graceful way unhindered by the rider and guided with the subtlest of signals.