Mary D. Midkiff's Women & Horses Newseltter
Newsle    Newsletter ~ February 2011~ Issue No. 107
In This Issue
The Focused Horse DVD
The InBalance Horse Oil Blend
Turning Darkness Into Light
Tip of the Month: Correct and Let Go
Driving Miss Rita

By Mary D. Midkiff

DVD cover
All the steps you need to use The InBalance Horse oil blend, mouth massage and acupressure!
5 steps to maximizing preparing, training and enjoying horses. 


"Fly Lite absolutely LOVES your oil blend- in fact, most days, she looks for the oils. It certainly calms her down and relieves her tension (which she has quite often as she is a typical chestnut mare). We used it before we schooled cross country and it made all the

difference between the normal "jiggy, crazy" Fly and the one that WALKED around the course!  M. DeCarlo, Lexington, KY"

 Buy Now
-  -   -  -  -  -  -  -  - 
Fitness, Performance & the Female Equestrian

Fitness, Performance and the Female Equestrian
Buy Now

She Flies Without Wings

She Flies Without Wings
Buy Now


The New DVD "The Focused Horse" is ready for shipping!

The 26 minute DVD includes demonstrations showing steps on how to apply and use "The InBalance Horse" essential oil blend aromatherapy, massage and acupressure techniques to calm and focus your horse, and English and Western saddle fit specific to the female equestrian.

$10 plus shipping and handling
The InBalance Horse Essential Oil Blend for Horses
We have added Sweet Almond Oil to the blend speeding up the absorption rate; and it resists freezing!
InBalance HorseCalming the Anxious Horse...
with aromatherapy and the analgesic affects of this essential oil blend.

Time after time, horse after horse, horse owners and handlers are experiencing the magic results of The InBalance Horse essential blend for horses.  

Links to Helpful Websites:


Go to Saddles for Women on the website to get a free DVD in saddle fit information!



Clinics by Mary Midkiff:

I am currently updating my clinic details and information for 2011.

Inquiries - please email me at or call 502-552-1195.

I'd love to come work with you and your horses and find out what we can create to build your partnerships.
 Galloping horse animation
Turning Darkness Into Light

This time of year the environmental light is changing and your horses, through their retinas, will be stimulated. The increase in light will trigger the release of hormones and they will begin to transition into a reproductive mode. Needless to say fillies, mares and stallions are stimulated but geldings are also affected as they sense the shift in mare's behavior and their display of sexual interest and agitation. This shift can disturb herd dynamics and cause many problems that may not have been evident all winter.


I strongly advise geldings to be separated from females in turn out situations, however, some people do turn them out together. This time of year is particularly volatile and geldings can get seriously injured as they become territorial, possessive and aggressive around mares in heat. 


Please consider separating out your males and females at least during the next 6 months to prevent stress, injuries and possible catastrophes.  Your management program can turn a potentially dark and dangerous situation into a light, healthy and safe environment.


I hope you will follow from newsletter to newsletter insights, observations, questions and solutions to numerous inquiries around horses and the world they live in. The resources, web links, experts, books and articles listed here will give you lots of options to pursue.


The Women & Horses newsletter stands for all horse and pony breeds, as well as donkeys and mules, all disciplines and uses of the horse and wild horses


Past newsletters have been archived on the web site for you to check out anytime and I'm always open to receiving your inquires via email.



Mary D. Midkiff

Equestrian Resources 

Tip of the Month:

Correct and Let Go 


Can you imagine horse herd road rage? A horse in a wild herd holding on to their anger over another horse getting in his way? Pouting in a corner, giving the lead mare the finger everytime she walks by, refusing to run with the herd until the culprit apologizes?  I don't think so.  Humans hold on to emotions, animals move on, they have to to survive.  The herd needs their participation, every horse has a role, and there is no time or place for grudges, revenge, paybacks or pouting.


When you feel you must correct your horse do so right away, quickly, with no violence from you just a quick correction such as a smack with your hand or a quick pop with the end of a lead rope on the shoulder or rump (never around the head) where the lead mare might bite them. Next, and this is key, let it go and move right on with what you were doing. Tell them why you corrected them and bring your blood pressure down.  I might say, "kicking out at me is unacceptable" in a strong tone. After your correction, shift yourself, with intention, into a very calm state and send that message to the horse.


No matter how they react, you move right on to the next state of emotion be it calming, relaxing, releasing, joyful or peaceful.  The horse will quickly learn to accept your corrections and not be offended and respect your teaching and leadership role.


This is how the lead mare would handle disobedience, you can do the same.



Driving Miss Rita
Rita is three weeks away from turning two years old now and she has received her registered name: Real Royal T.  I started driving her about three weeks ago and wanted to share my observations and insights in this process with you.

First of all let me say that in spite of Rita's past of headaches, head pain, frustration, anger, unmanageable behavior and distrust she is now enjoying her education with interest and acceptance. When a horse is comfortable in their mind, body and soul, emotionally balanced, trusts you fully and they are surrounded by people with inner peace, you can teach and train them to do just about anything.

The important point here is that all of these factors have to be present or the horse will not move forward as a partner. If all of these factors are not in alignment the horse will act out or shut down, alas people fall into forcing and dominating.

I start out by doing everything in the stall first. Hopefully you have a large stall or small pen or round pen to work in. I tie her up to the wall with a safety tie, groom her, give her The InBalance Horse Oil Blend along
with some mouth massage and endorphin release and let her process for a couple of minutes while I'm getting all of my equipment prepared. This processing time is when she goes internal and releases tension within herself. It's important so don't hurry through this.

Julie Bell, my friend and assistant, helps me out with driving and ground work sessions whenever she can. Julie is a wonderful calming influence and a great teacher. Rita and I are lucky to have her as part of our team.  Julie and I work together to get Rita tacked up. We let Rita smell everything we are putting on her body and I talk to her about what we are doing. Believe it or not horses appreciate explanations about everything you do with them. You may even hear them exhale a big breath!

I put on a saddle pad, a curcingle with lots of rings (very slowly tightening the girth every few minutes), the bridle with bit (I use a Robart pinchless D Ring snaffle) and reins then a halter on top of the bridle with a line attached. I twist the reins under her throat and run the throat latch strap through the twisted reins to keep them from flopping or dangling. I run driving lines through the rings on each side and attach them to the halter to start.

The first session I kept the lines attached to the halter only to give her the feel of the lines and just in case she bolts I won't be pulling on her mouth. In between driving sessions I work with her turns, halts and backing in the stall with the bridle and reins using my voice commands. I can then take this to the next driving session with more control. (Julie and I have done a lot of ground work with Rita in addition to the stall exercises.)

Julie walks beside Rita's head with a light hold on the lead line but not influencing her at all. This is for everyone's safety and gives Rita a sense of security. I am doing all of the guiding and commanding with my voice and driving line aids. We practice walking, stopping, turning and backing letting the lines flop on her sides and back and tighten and loosen just above her hocks.  We may go up and down the aisle three or four times  stopping to reward her on occasion then back into the stall.

Most recently we are going into the indoor arena and doing figure eights, circles and serpentines as the lines are now connected to the bit. Our sessions do not need to last any more than 15-20 minutes. She is coming along beautifully. Here are a few photos from our earliest session. I am so proud of her accomplishments!  
Driving in aisle
I encourage and guide while Julie makes sure we are safe
Give her plenty of time and space to turn around
Give her plenty of time and space to process what you are asking. You can see here how much she is thinking and focused. 
Line Driving Rita 2-1-11
Use your voice telling her what you want and flap the lines against and over her body to give her a sense of where you want her rear end to go.
Stop and Reward
Reward her for those balanced-four square halts!
Starting down the aislway
As she gets more confidence and understanding of my aids she will begin to stride out and take contact with the bit
Julie and Rita
Julie and Rita after our first driving session. What a proud pair!


Happy Riding!
 Mary D. Midkiff
Mary D. Midkiff
Equestrian Resources, Inc.