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Dances With Horses Update

The fifth annual Wild Horse Workshop took place at the end of last month in Lawrence, Kansas. It was deemed a raging success with 109 horses and burros adopted. There were 65 participants and 8 clinicians all interacting with each other and the horses for five very full days.

This interesting and innovative venue is unlike any I’ve ever seen. Each clinician has a different slant/approach to the gentling of wild horses. The common denominator is using least resistance methods and attempting to stress the horses as little as possible. Sometimes it works beautifully. Sometime it doesn’t. Gentling absolute wild horses is tricky to say the least. The word ‘feel’ cannot be underestimated.

The techniques are as varied as the horses including: round penning, clicker training, human round pen or Navajo Ring, T-touch, and my favorite, the bamboo pole, John Sharp’s gift to wild horses. For an in-depth look at the past workshop click this link:

I strongly encourage those interested in the future Wild Horse Workshops to consider joining us for a week you’ll never forget. Next year’s location is yet to be announced. Watch our web schedule for upcoming dates.

The Wild Horses of Abaco are moving to a preserve! Speaking of wild horses, I’ve worked with this extremely rare and near to extinct group of horses for the last two winters on Abaco Island, Bahamas. These horses are the purest strain of Spanish Barb in the world. They were shipwrecked hundreds of years ago. As recent as several decades back, they ranged in the hundreds. Due to a string of unfortunate circumstances the herd now consists of a mere sixteen horses, 7 stallions and 9 mares. These are magnificent creatures with about a third of them displaying the highly prized war bonnet facial markings. The last serious hurricane pushed them onto the citrus orchard that is their demise. An overabundance of rich grasses is creating obesity in the mares. That in conjunction with the chemicals spayed onto the trees is preventing them from conceiving.

Mimi Rehor has devoted her life to saving this valuable resource. She lives on a sailboat and manages a small bookstore to support the horses. Numerous donations and several grants have helped her fight the battle to keep these horses alive. She has been leaning on the Bahamian government like a friendly elephant for years to just get them to take an interest. Recent DNA testing proved their heritage and suddenly the powers that be could ignore Mimi no longer. Last week they agreed to provide a preserve adjacent to the citrus orchard. This winter we’ll assemble a group to push the herd onto the preserve and set up fencing. To learn more about The Wild Horses of Abaco visit Mimi’s website at: Come visit the Bahamas the be part of this historic event as we literally save a herd of genetically valuable horses.

Clinics: Two clinics will take place in the next six weeks in the southeast. The first was Nov 16-17 in Blacksburg, VA at Farmingdale Stables. Sylvia Scott did a bang-up job organizing this event in which Frank Bell certifieds and aspiring certifieds converged from Thursday through Monday. Frank demonstrated his 7 Step System on Friday evening for Virginia Tech Vet School. Saturday and Sunday were an action packed weekend, as participants, Frank Bell partners, and those in pursuit of certification all participated in the two-day clinic. This was an incredible learning opportunity for everyone involved. Monday through Wednesday Frank did private sessions at Farmingdale Stables with some extremely interesting horses and owners.

The last day of November will be the start of another two-day clinic in Scottsmoor, Florida. In this venue Frank will share the spotlight with noted clinician Donna Maye West. Donna is a certified HSA trainer with fabulous ground and riding skills. Frank and Donna’s programs compliment each other. They have worked side by side the last two years at the Wild Horse Workshops. This will be an interesting clinic as two masters work together to give the riders a wealth of information. Donna’s site is:

January 11 & 12 will find Frank in Tucson, AZ at the ‘Create a Cooperative Horse Symposium’ hosted by the American Horse Trainers Group. Frank will be one of four clinicians including Josh Lyons, Clay Harper, Steve Sikora, and Linda Kohanov, author of ‘The Tao of Equis.’ Each clinician has a specialty and will showcase their particular skill. Frank’s 7 Steps will lead off the event being held at the U of Arizona Ag Dept arena from 10-5:00 Saturday and Sunday. Visit Clay Harper’s site for more details at:

Register for Frank’s clinics online at or call 800-871-7635.

Our New Problem Solving Video Series will be available in the near future. We’ve compiled five of our works in a convenient package to help horsemen and women with the most common issues we all deal with on a regular basis. Included in this series are: Trailer Loading, Spooking & Shying, Water & Bridges, Mounting the Difficult Horse and Problem Foot-handling, and Solving 7 Common Horse Problems. This package of five works is available for only $149.95 or with Frank’s foundation Discover video, all six for $189.95.

Here’s hoping you are all enjoying late fall, our favorite time of the year to ride.

Safe Riding,

Frank Bell and Dances With Horses


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