Arica Bores

Let me first start by painting the picture on how I met Lisette Zandvoort. I bought a 5 year old paint mare that spent her entire life in a stall and arena. I did all the right things by riding several times and showing up unannounced to ride. Everything was perfect right? Wrong, I brought my horse home and disaster hit. It had been almost 10 years since I had owned and rode horses. I had a ton of experience in my younger days but lost my confidence through the non-horse years. Once I got my mare home she started rearing and taking advantage of my lack of confidence. It did not help she also had a lack of confidence outside of her comfort zone which was a stall and/or arena. I tried several trainers and did not feel like they were a good fit for me and my horse. I found Lisette’s website and thought why not. I brought my horse to Lisette and Lisette watch the drama unfold. My horse had zero respect for me, kicked out when loping, pulled me around lunging, reared at the slightest movement or breeze. I was at the point of selling this horse thinking I was in over my head. The biggest thing I loved about Lisette was she had no problem being direct, blunt, and realistic with me about the situation.

Lisette gave me options, the fast option was she trains my horse, and the slow option was she trains me to train my horse. I took the slow option wanting to do this myself to achieve success by challenging not only my horse but myself. My goals were to be able to trail ride and compete locally at Western Pleasure shows. Lisette started back at the basics with my horse and me. As the bond between me and my horse developed both of our confidence increased. We have now become a great team.

I would say Lisette’s quality of teaching is both kind and rigorous, but also patient and skillful, to help you meet your goals as a rider no matter how high your aspirations. She is the type of trainer that has a large bag of “tricks” to pull from so she has the flexibility to work with the unique individual horses, and does not use a “one technique works on all horses” approach. She stresses letting your horse make mistakes to figure things out, using the lightest touch possible with the goal of getting even lighter. She gets results without pushing the horse passed its ability (mentally and physically). But the part I admire the most about Lisette is she is honest about the horse’s ability to do the job you are asking of it (and not continuing to work with a horse that isn’t going to work in your specific discipline). Now don’t get me wrong she will push you out of your comfort zone, but only when she knows you and your horse is capable of moving forward. She is awesome at communicating theories and techniques and will rephrase, explain or demonstrate things over and over until you understand what she is saying or asking.

Since that grueling first day, I have now competed in several local shows the past few years taking Champion in  Western Green Horse for yearend high points, and last year came in Reserve Champion for 19-49 year olds in Western riding. Lisette will accompany you to shows for a reasonable price and her lessons are also reasonably prices. She is not a clock type trainer that will stop when the clock reaches one hour, she stops her lessons when it is the right place for the horse or you to end on. Recently, she started giving lessons to my husband who had very little riding experience. Lisette can teach any age and/or ability of rider along with all types of horses and disciplines.