KATIE THOMAS

My equestrian adventure began... in 1984 at Prude Ranch in West Texas. I spent two weeks there, riding and branding cattle. 

Most often found atop... my blue-eyed paint Coltin or my sassy chestnut Trixie!

A horse that changed my life... I bought Coltin just after my father lost his battle against cancer. He showed me that horses have exceptional healing powers. 

Greatest inspiration... my dog, Apollo. He loved everyone, was suspicious of people in big hats and sunglasses and he looked to each day with enthusiasm no matter what we were doing. 

Best thing about teaching... watching new generations fall in love with horses - and their feeling of accomplishment after learning something new.

Words to live by... "If you can dream and not make dreams your master, if you can think and not make thoughts your aim, if you can meet triumph and disaster and treat those two imposters just the same..." (Kipling). Also, "Look fear in the eye and boldly step forward". 

I'd love to... learn to shoot from my horse (c'mon, I am from Texas)!

I wish someone had told me... that not all horses come trained to walk, trot and canter, and to stay away from the fence if your horse takes off!

If I weren't a riding instructor... I'd teach history, especially the Second World era. I almost went back to school so that I could write a dissertation on the topic! Instead, history books litter my bedside table and I spend all of my free time reading. 

KATIE WORLAND

My equestrian adventure began... in Indiana! My granddad used to to always take me to go see the horses living by his property.

Most often found atop... my charming, bay Quarter mix Finn, sweet Lil P or rambunctious Brad (yes, I know that I am a horse hoarder). 

A horse that changed my life... my horse, Tyra. I had some bad equine experiences before her and she taught me that it was okay to completely trust my physical well-being and soul to a horse. 

Greatest inspiration... my parents. They have always encouraged me to believe in myself and my passions. They have full-heartedly supported my equestrian endeavors and I've even turned my dad into a cowboy!

Best thing about teaching... watching the power and love of horses fall over new students!

Words to live by... "If you can believe it, you can achieve it!"

I'd love to... learn how to vault off a horse!

I wish someone had told me... that the best rider is somebody who is in touch with their emotions. If you are in a bad mood, your h0rse will not respond well - if you are in a good/forgiving mood, you will get a lot more out of your horse. 

If I weren't a riding instructor... I'd do something within the psychology/sociology fields. I love seeing how we all fit within our own communities and societies due to our personalities!

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