has always loved horses. As a child she was a keen member
of the Pony Club and in her teens was a promising eventer
trained by ex-Olympic coach Pat Burgess.
skiing accident, however, very nearly ended her riding career
when she plunged 40ft down a mountain while on a school trip
were times when I wondered if I would be ever be able to ride again.
But, luckily, although I'd got a compressed fracture - as well as
whiplash and a broken wrist - there was not lasting damage to my
spine," recalls Debbie.
The accident which happened just two weeks before Debbie's 18th
birthday then served to steer her career on a different route and
away from the horses that had always been her passion.
left for London where she trained as a Registered Staff Nurse working
in orthopaedics, then later qualified as a massage therapist
Debbie enjoyed her career, she still felt restless, so decided to
travel to French Polynesia and then hitch-hike round New Zealand,
Indonesia, Thailand, Peru, Bolivia and Australia
was at a huge cattle ranch in Australia's Northern Territories that
Debbie took the first steps towards her new career as a horsewhisperer.
break the horses in the old fashioned way, they'd be tied down,
branded. . . it was terrible. I was bitten by the bug again, and
seeing these horses and the hard life they had made me wish that
I could do more for these wonderful animals that have done and continue
to do so much for us.
. .when I got back to England and saw Monty Roberts on TV, I was
bowled over," she remembers.
After taking a ten week Monty Roberts course in the UK she later
left for America where she trained and worked with Monty himself
and his right-hand man, Crawford.
her return to Hampshire, Debbie formed Understanding Equus and runs
clinics and courses with her counterpart Maya Horsey, operating
from Rawlsbury Farm in Higher Ansty, near Dorchester.
Equus offers the opportunity to gain the Monty Roberts Introductory
Course in Horsemanship, clinics, individual training, lessons, livery
service as well as lecturing at colleges and universities.
love people and I love horses, and I have seen the power of this
work and how it can change people's lives and their outlook on life,"
Reilly can be contacted at Understanding Equus by phoning: 01425
473151 or emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
the Monty Roberts Learning Centre on Stand No. 53 at the British
Equine Event, 2nd & 3rd November 2002