I've been a fan of Clinton Anderson's Downunder Horsemanship for some time now. I've watched Clinton's show on RFD-TV for several years now and for the past year and a half I have been actively following his methods. I am a big believer in his program. I trained Matti using the Downunder Horsemanship program exclusively (see my previous post for videos) and have used it with other horses with great success. Thanks to The Method I've regained the confidence that I lost after my accident and I am convinced that it is the best method of horse training for me. It is my desire to progress as far into the program as I can and to help other people discover The Method as well.
A while back I found out that Clinton Anderson had a three year Apprenticeship program where a select few go live and work at the Downunder Horsemanship Ranch in Stephenville, TX and learn everything Clinton knows about the Method. When the Apprentices graduate they get the title of Downunder Horsemanship Professional Clinician and they are able to teach clinics exactly how Clinton teaches them. Here is a link to an article on the Downunder Horsemanship website that goes in-depth about the Apprenticeship
Well, to me this sounded like a Dream Come True. So ever since last summer I have been working to train Matti using the Fundamentals Series and make a video to send into DUH (a video demonstrating every exercise in the Fundamental Series is required when applying). That is why I spent January and February in TN; so that I could finish what I started this past summer.
I mailed my application packet on March 1st and have been anxiously waiting for a response since then. Well, on Sunday afternoon I finally got a call from Shana Terry, Clinton's first Professional Clinician. She told me that she was impressed with all the hard work I put into making my video and that she wanted me to come for a week long interview at the ranch! Needless to say, I was psyched!
Now, because of the busy schedule at the ranch right now (there are clinics scheduled at the ranch every month from now until November) they won't be able to have me come for the interview until the fall. Though I'm a little disappointed that it's going to be so long until I can go, it doesn't dampen my excitement. In all honesty that timing is just about perfect. It will allow me some time to get better in shape (I've started running, a blog post about that will be coming soon) and will allow me to work summer camp at Camp Ketcha. Plus it will allow me to just enjoy my summer in Maine.
Of course, just because I have been asked to come for an interview does NOT mean that I am going to be Clinton's next Apprentice. Hundreds of people apply for the Apprenticeship each year and about 20 are asked to come for the interview. Of those twenty MAYBE one will be asked to come to stay for the six month trial period. Even so, just going to the ranch for the one week interview is the chance of a lifetime. I am certainly going to treat it as such. This is not a time to get cocky. Now that I know I am going to be going for the interview I am going to spend the next several month pouring over The Fundamental Series over and over again until I have it memorized. I'm going to work hard to get in shape. And I'm really going to commit myself to being the best riding instructor I can be at Camp Ketcha. After all, if I don't prove to be valuable at the job I already have, how can I hope to be seen as valuable at Downunder Horsemanship?
So, I will certainly keep you posted on how things go while I am preparing for this venture. If anyone out there has any questions about Downunder Horsemanship or the Apprenticeship please feel free to ask me. When I was first thinking about applying I searched all over the internet to see if I could find someone else that had already applied so that I could pick their brains, but I never found anyone. That is why I wanted to post about this on my blog, so that you can pick my brain. My intention for writing this is not to brag, I am nothing special. I have a LONG way to go to being a pro at the Method. The reason I am sharing this is so that you can be encouraged as you chase your own dreams. If I can do it, you certainly can do it!
Don't stop chasing those dreams now! You're almost there!
Miranda Joy Turpin