Andrea Datz Integrative Horsemanship and Tango with Horses
In the latest episode I had the pleasure of chatting with Andrea Datz. There is so much gold in this episode, Andrea has learned so much over her years with horses.
Andrea’s life with horses began as a child with a couple of mini’s, but they only really taught her how to fall off! Then as she grew, Andrea was able to do 4H, the American version of Australia’s Pony Club, on her horse Ricky that she got for her birthday! This is where she learned all the basic skills of riding and also got that incredible sense of childhood joy and freedom that comes when you are a kid and have a horse that you can go on adventures with.
Vet School was Andrea’s initial focus for her career and study, when that fell through she realised that she was able to get a degree in Equine Science, so this is what she did! The teachings here were very traditional in their horse training methods. It wasn’t until the colt starting lesson came in her degree that her life was changed. This is where she was assigned Gin.
Gin was the horse that completely rocked Andrea’s world. She was a smart, stubborn red headed mare that was not going to let anyone dominated, manipulate or coerce her into any kind of training from a human. All of the training and guidance that she got from her teachers completely failed, she would fast work out what they were asking and do the complete opposite!
It was when Andrea’s teacher gave her a horse training book by Cherry Hill that she was able to learn the methods of advance and retreat and food rewards. This was the one method that Gin would allow Andrea to use to begin a partnership with her.
If Andrea kept repeating her training and going to the round pens Gin would let her know in a very clear way and she was able to physically take out the round pen panels and ruin the round yards! Gin was certainly clear in her communication to Andrea about hat she did not want to do!! It was not unusual for Gin to pin her ears and physically take out a human to let them know that the training methods they were using were unacceptable.
Gin left Andrea’s life as a part of the college program, however, little did she know that their journey was not done yet. Andrea was able to bu back Gin and still has her to this day.
Andrea ended up seeking the advice of an animal communicator to help Gin understand that not all humans were bad people. Gin had a very rough start to life with humans and it took some convincing to allow her to partner with Andrea.
Gin taught Andrea how to build a mutual relationship with her horse, to find the path where they were both happy with how their relationship went. Gin is one of Andrea’s greatest teachers and the more she listens directly to Gin when she needs assistance from a coach, the more their relationship becomes stronger.
Andrea spent time with incredible coaches including Mark Rashid and Kim Walness who were able to support her relationship with Gin. It was when Andrea finally let go of her human coaches and began to listen to only her horses that her life with horses began to thrive and open in ways that she could never have imagined.
Horse whisperers are a thing of the past, this new way of horsemanship is all about horse listening.
When Andrea’s husband brought them a Argentine Tango lesson she found a new level of horsemanship and Tango with Horses was born.
Andrea now has, as her title says so beautifully, Integrative Horsemanship. From what I understand, it is first and foremost, listening to your horse and seeing what they need to feel good about their relationship with you. Andrea integrates Tango principles, bodywork and positive reinforcement as well as listening to your horse and finding your way together.
It was the whole summer that Andrea spent simply hanging out with her horses that Gin taught her inner calmness. This was an incredible gift that Andrea’s herd gave to her and it is also a gift that Andrea gave to me as we were talking on Zoom from opposite sides of the world. Her inner stillness and calm were able to touch and influence me which is something wonderful to behold. I truly hope that in listening to this podcast, you too are able to feel this gift.
To connect with Andrea you can go to her website, you can also follow her blog where she does weekly updates and keep up to date with all the incredible things that she is learning. Andrea is now translating all that she has learned on the ground, into the saddle. I really look forward to keeping in touch with Andrea and checking in sometime in 2019 to see what she has found as I know she has a lot to give, but I also know that she is going to learn and share so much more with all of us in the horse world!
Andrea is also on Facebook
To listen to the full interview please click here.
This weeks show is brought to you by EQUITANA Australia. Equitana is happening from the 15thto 18thNovember this year in Melbourne.
In celebration of 20 years of EQUITANA, The Mane Event will make its much-anticipated return to the ‘mane’ stage of the Aqualuma Grand Pavilion. This is an action-packed night for the whole family.
Horsemanship stars David Manchon and Double Dans will be on first. then To cap off the night illusionist Sam Powers will bend your reality with a performance that will have you questioning what is happening in front of your very eyes. After starring in Australia’s Got Talent, Powers has taken his show on the road and sold out shows wherever he goes. Powers now wants to bring his performance to you!
This is a ticketed event. To get your tickets to this once in a lifetime opportunity go to equitana.com.au I hope to see you there. Make sure you say hi if you see me.