7/17/2013 8:36:00 AM Training clinic lets riders learn the mounted police officers' way
Riders will learn how to safely handle and desensitize their horse in Mounted Officer Training Association classes
Heidi Dahms-Foster Special to the Tribune
Horse owners who want to improve their riding skills and their relationship with their animals will have a unique opportunity on July 27 and 28 as certified instructors of the Mounted Officer Training Association conduct a clinic in Prescott Valley.
MOTA's Rick Roda said the organization normally trains mounted police officers in POST certified courses of 120 hours - ten days straight at 12 hours a day. Now trainers are bringing the skills to community horse owners, and they don't have to be in law enforcement to attend.
The two-day event will train 10 riders each day. In the morning trainer Toah Hatch will cover horsemanship safety, and relating to horses without getting hurt. The afternoon session, Roda said, will include more sensory training with obstacles such as water, bridges, and other situations that might cause a horse to shy away, such as hanging items or entering a wash rack.
"Horses are herd and prey animals. They are afraid of everything that crosses their path. Their instinct is to run," Roda said.
He said the class will help riders and horses come to a "meeting of the minds" through a better understanding of the horse's mind, and develop more confidence in each other.
The class is complete in one day. Roda said another class may come available in the fall if this one fills up.
The clinic will take place at the Arizona Agribusiness and Equine Center, 7500 E. Civic Circle in Prescott Valley. Classes are limited to 10 participants in the morning and afternoon sessions both days. Cost is $100 per day.
For more information, visit www.AZMountedOfficers.com or register by calling Rick Roda at 619-368-5433.