You may notice that some of our horses at The Hideout Guest Ranch carry the “AH” brand, which stands for Authentic Horses. As you read through this page, you might find some new, unfamiliar ideas and theories.
The concept of AH, however, was formed after repeatedly witnessing the results of inadequate horsemanship. After carefully observing missteps in others’ training that led to the impairment of potentially excellent horses and equestrian experiences, the AH brand was developed as a way to create horses and riders through training that is devoid of these errors.
The AH brand has one simple goal: to make a positive, successful experience for both horse and rider. The AH concept is about respecting and taking very well care of horses, yet be (or learn how to be) firm with horses in an honest way, so they know who is the leader. We believe in doing a lot of good, respectful and professional groundwork in the round pen and arena prior to riding the horse.
Read further and explore the 12 questions we raise under AH Clinics & Training.
Authenticity Means Independence with an Open Mind…
Authenticity to us means objectivity, honesty and doing the right thing with an open mind. With an authentic approach to training, a horse is able to develop its full potential, regardless of bloodlines and breeding.
Our AH string of horses is diverse; Mustangs, registered and non-registered Quarter Horses, Kentucky Mountain Horses, and Arabian half-breds have all passed through AH Training and matched the 3 C’s in order to earn the brand.
At AH we do not believe that a certain breed, bloodline, or paying any amount of money for a horse will guarantee that the horse is or will be a great horse. While we believe that some produce a higher percentage of great prospects, there is not one single breeding program, bloodline or horse breed that produces all great horses or great prospects.
We do know that there are loads of horses out there given they get a fair chance to be trained by capable and respectful hands they could be great horses.
We feel that financial interest, subjective and opportunistic motivations tend to close the open mind, kill authenticity and often blur the focus on making sound choices to ensure the wellbeing of both horse and rider.
An open-minded approach to horses and a willingness to keep learning is a crucial part of the AH concept.
AH is a Journey to Excellence
Only horses that successfully represent this concept receive and carry the AH freeze brand. Carrying the AH brand is not an end point; it is part of a journey to excellence. Bearing the AH brand means that a horse will be continuously fine-tuned and trained to keep their quality and ensure continued growth.
“Excellence is a journey, not a destination.”
AH Horses & The Hideout Guest Ranch
AH Horses & Training LLC owns all horses carrying the AH brand and manages the established horse program at The Hideout Guest Ranch. It is our goal to have all horses at The Hideout Guest Ranch carry the AH brand. Over the last two years, we have raised our standards for The Hideout guest string of horses and dropped all horses that did not meet our new basic requirements. Some of these horses that did not make the cut carried rather prestigious bloodlines; Authenticity does not allow cutting corners, regardless of pedigree.
Authentic Leadership & People to support the AH Concept
We recognize that working with horses is similar to working with people, which is all about leadership. At AH Horses & Training, the individuals that work and train with our horses also need to meet our 3 C’s of Character, Conduct and Competence.
Character means honesty, authenticity, objectivity and trying to do the best you can without manipulation or hidden agenda’s.
The right Conduct is required to channel the above in a respectful, patient and well-mannered way. It means knowing when to be soft and when to be firm, not shying away when confrontation is necessary.
In addition to Character and Conduct, we need superb Competence, as it takes professional hands and an excellent eye to lead a horse to excellence and develop its full potential.
The horses also have a feel for this, and will only realize 100% of their potential with a great 3 C trainer. As an old saying goes, “It takes strong shoulders to carry a lot of wealth, no matter being money, talent, knowledge or power.” Horses do not have much say or choice in regards to their training, so whoever handles them needs do it with the best of intentions in mind.
When working with horses, most of the time the horse is not the problem, the rider or the handler is. That is where we start. Not the other way around.
The Ability to Manage Leadership Skills & Talents
The more competence and leadership skills one possesses, the more responsibility this individual carries. Character and Conduct are essential for strong leaders who need to be able to channel their talent and skill. Without this sense of what is appropriate or beneficial, one could abuse their competence and talent to become political, manipulative. Thus, it is essential that the individuals associated with AH Horses & Training maintain a solid balance of the 3 C’s.
Using a divide and conquer approach to training horses may accomplish selfish goals, but it is a flawed leadership philosophy that lacks authenticity; it has never produced great, long-lasting authentic organizations nor reliable horses.
At AH Horses & Training, we believe that working according to the 3 C concept allows us to train and develop great horses that are safe, light and enjoyable, regardless of their breeding or background. Positive Try & Intention are crucial.
Read More……….as a leadership, recruiting and management concept.
AH Horsemanship Clinics & Training
We organize on a regular basis AH Horsemanship Clinics at The Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch let by our team of wranglers and / or professional horse experts with an open mind. These trainers & clinicians come from a variety of schools, philosophies, backgrounds, etc. The only request we have is that they are professionals; quality oriented and have respect and passion to work with horses and people, using low stress natural approaches.
These trainers have been schooled in English, Western or Classic riding or a combination of them all and they can come from the US, Cowboy Country, Canada or Europe