Russ's Bio
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Russ’s Bio

Around 2000 after being burned out from 20 years on the bleeding edge of the high tech world, I found myself looking for a new direction. I was struggling with a horse Freckles, after 40 years of amateur riding, and decided my new direction was to build professional quality skills.

I started with simple education process, natural horse, training, riding, conditioning, and then optional upper levels.  I approached it like an art and started from the bottom and put in the effort into my education I would my engineering degree, or a medical degree.

If you step back, you will seen the education process is missing in horsemanship, and if you try to study horsemanship as a professional you will see just broke the education process is in horsemanship.

In 2000, I accepted I was an amateur horseman with most of my horsemanship based on dogma, instead of actual first hand studies. So I threw it all out and started from the horse. Right off the bat, I understood my biggest issue was the study of the natural horse, without that, everything I did was just a guess.  For four years, until I met Emmett, I did a lot of basic experimenting. The first thing I did was to do everything I though was wrong, just to make sure it was wrong, I quickly found out I did not know squat about horses.

When I met Emmett, I found a professional horseman.  The only one I have really been exposed to. Emmett built a professional apprenticeship from the natural horse to the upper levels and based his horsemanship on the 13 stallion bands he had roaming in his backyard, just so he could study horsemanship.

It became clear that if quality professional horsemanship was going to survive, we are going to have to rebuild the education process based on the horse. This is an impossible process, because we have an army of amateur horsemen who have been training horses for years, and never bothered to actually study the natural horse.  Science has perfected operant conditioning, but the amateur horseman, never field-tested the science to insure it actually produce a quality horse.

My pursuit horsemanship has been my own journey. I have no clue how someone today would do quality professional apprenticeship in horsemanship, as I did with Emmett Brislawn.  When I was done, my views on horsemanship and horses was far different that the horse profession.  As a professional, I understood that was because I had the discipline to study horsemanship as a professional.  When I agreed to put this online reference together with Emmett, I accepted I had to draw the line between amateur horsemanship and a professional horsemanship based on a solid logical education process.

Professionally this is a hard line to follow. If I cannot define the education process, I just dismiss it as amateur horsemanship. If the education process does exist then I look at the differences between that process and mine.

I have also split horsemanship back into the two historical methods, Circus training and Classical Equation. When you understand that a campaign horse was the foundation of Classical Equation, you realize that honest Classical Equation is a dead art and that we have become Circus trainers.

There is also a huge difference between training horses and building an education process based on the actual study of the horse. Since process I learned is a seven-year process to train a horse and I started in 2000, I am just getting started.

Part of the responsibility of a professional is to teach the profession. Emmett failed at this. He had three students pass his apprenticeship.  Since I was 45 when I started my formal apprenticeship with Emmett, I understood just what he had put together and why his approach to horsemanship was so different. Emmett just studied the natural horse and let the natural horse teach him.
Without the natural horse, professional is really dead.  The study of the natural horse has that much impact on the education process. 

Dealing with horsemanship as a professional is what drives professional horsemen, such as Emmett under ground so to speak. You cannot argue with armies of amateurs who have never study the natural horse or have a logical education process. It is the horse that pays this price.

Personally, I enjoy studying horses and the challenge on how to get a formal apprenticeship on horsemanship into a cyberspace technology has been a fun challenge.  While I am not sure I will be any more successful than Emmett, all you can do is try.  Think big, you might screw up and get there.

As you look through this site, ask yourself, where the education process that supports you knowledge actually is? Who actually studied the natural horse to confirm the thousands of years of dogma are actually true?  It is an easy journey to train a horse, it is a rewarding journey to study horsemanship.

Enjoy the site, I think you will find it is one of the most unique references out there and it is based on the real time study and practices of the art of horsemanship, as defined by the natural horse.

As one person, I do not have the skills to define the education process from the study of the natural horse. But building the education process is an honest profession, compared to training horses without an education process

Thanks for your time

Russ Burns