(My Mom and my second horse “Banner”)
To Whom It May Concern,
I have had the pleasure to work with Kitt Jenae for the past 12 years. She has been pivotal with helping to start my young horses correctly.
Her ground work is outstanding in terms of being aware of the horse’s movement. She has an amazing eye to predict any horse movement.
Her skill is based on years of observation and attention to horse movement. It would take a very specialized person, who probably doesn’t exist, to be able to replicate Kitt’s skill.
Awareness Increases Harmony
(The following is an objective synopsis of the transformation of the Friesian gelding, Royal Knight displayed on this website by Nancy. She was a previous owner/manager of River Trail Stables for many years; a 200 horse boarding/training facility situated along the Santa Ana River in the City of Orange, CA.)
“When Kitt Jenae brought her newly purchased Friesian horse, Royal Knight, to our boarding facility I was extremely concerned.
I didn’t sense orneriness in RK, but he displayed intense fears as well as an incredibly strong willed mind. This can be as risky a combination as that of a mean spirited animal.
Kitt started her program with RK never losing patience with him. As time went on I saw minute changes in his overall behavior.
Kitt desensitized him to his fears and showed him positive alternatives for his tantrums and spookiness. I witnessed him slowly changing from an uncooperative, insecure animal to a more confident and willing horse.
From there his real education began. He was then trained to do it all, and I mean exactly that. The long list of behaviors Kitt taught this horse to perform is inconceivable. He became an extraordinarily well trained horse at liberty, while under saddle and on the ground.”
Nancy Shipley, Nipomo, CA
Kitt Jenae understands the language and movement of the horse: I experience it like a unifying ballet, a dance between horse and human. She is a very experienced and accomplished equestrian, who is also good at teaching this dance to both horses and humans, in a safe and effective way. (I get to watch several other horse and rider lessons.)
Kitt has taught me specific ‘how tos’ for evaluating my balance consistently while the horse is stepping making riding physically easier and safer. Watching for straight alignment between the ears gives me clues on how and what to do to maintain balance at all times. (Mine as well as the horse’s!) In this way I am riding more confidently, ready to correct unanticipated movements. By keeping myself balanced over the horse, regardless of what the horse is doing, and using legs more than hands, I am learning how to control the horse with less effort and ride effectively, even when there is an unpredictable movement such as a spook. Her method includes understanding how the horse moves, how the left shoulder affects the right hind and vice versa. It involves directing the feet, the chest, and the body of the horse.
This wonderful way of learning to ride started for me on the ground proving my leadership role much like horses do with other horses. Kitt is equally talented at teaching groundwork! I learned how to side pass him, back around objects, and free lunge with inside and outside turns. It is all taught in a fun yet informative manner that is all being applied to my riding. She is teaching me how to read the horse for desensitizing from the ground first, using various objects and noises, then moves to under saddle work so that the horse (and I) are more relaxed and he is safer to ride.
And Kitt is very unique in that she actually inspired me to get down on all fours to really understand the movement of the horse! I’ve had such fun learning all of this and am so grateful to have the opportunity to learn from Kitt.
Thank you Kitt!
Kitt Jenae, is a horse trainer of a completely different caliber than the norm!!!
Not only is she kind, caring, warm, and patient with horses and people, she has an understanding of the bio-mechanics of equine movement and a gift for explaining it, that in my experience is unsurpassed!
Perhaps, her detailed and thorough approach is more than the average person is prepared to receive.
But if you are the horse owner who wants to give your equine student the finest education possible, then consider Ms. Jenae as your tutor.
She sets a phenomenal foundation, exemplifies a calm and knowledgeable approach to troublesome issues, is generous with her insights on all topics of horse care, has decades of personal hands on experience as a rider, caregiver, and coach.
I cannot say enough good things about this modest, reliable, and effective teacher.
(Worked with 2 Mustangs, one Medicine Hat Paint, and Draft-Thoroughbred cross)
Thank you Kitt, for lighting our way!
One of my clients gifted her best friend (a previous horse owner of many years) with a lesson in 2018. This was her synopsis:
Kitt, our meeting and lesson in November was an extraordinary and memorable even for me in 2018.
It was truly a Thanksgiving to be remembered and I have many, many things for which to be thankful.
Roskur was a perfect gentleman and attentive student.
(Yes, I figure he learned a few things as well.)
Although I likely won’t remember all of the specifics of our lesson, I will never forget how comfortable you made me feel.
Nor will I forget how calm Roskur acted (even when I most likely unwittingly asked him to do two things at one time.)
You have such insight into the temperament and “mechanics” of a horse.
In a calm, clear voice you teach the ‘tools’ a rider needs to enhance the experience for both the horse and the student.
In closing: I had a great time!!! and feel so fortunate to have met you and your friend. Looking forward to next time.
I think that Kitt has really helped me understand my horse and communicate with him better. We lease a 21 year old Arabian who has pre-Cushings and who was very sore in the feet. I had a little bit of trouble communicating and having a conversation with my horse, but the lady who we lease from introduced us to Kitt and we started taking lessons from her. Within a month, my horse Beau and I were a team and communicating much better. With Kitt’s help, I place 1st in an Equitation show at Buckley Stables (in San Luis Obispo) and Beau placed 3rd in a Pleasure class also at Buckley. He may not be a show horse, but what counts is that I finally had a relationship with my horse and we were working as a team. Kitt is easy going, and very easy to talk to.
Thanks for everything, Kitt!
(2011) Claire Nunez, Arroyo Grande, CA
Dear to whom it may concern,
I have been a rider since being a little girl and was trained in my home country, Spain, following the classical dressage method for more than 20 years so when I first met Kitt, a year and a half ago, I thought my brain was going to melt with so much new information. The time has taught me that this singular woman has a gift, Kitt has the capacity to understand horse biomechanics in a way I’ve never seen before. She has taught me that I can ride with much less effort and get better results: horse much more sensitive to aids and body language, more comfortable riding, sound horse and rider…When I got the first results I was fascinated, after so many years overusing my legs and reins to ask the horses for movements I couldn’t believe that I was now getting so much barely touching them or not even touching them, just having the intention of asking the horses to do something. It’s been a whole new world since I met this extraordinary woman, we still have our weekly lesson and I am still learning from her. On the top of everything she is a sweet heart.
Thanks Kitt! Julia Torres, Paso Robles, CA.
I would like to contribute my personal commendation and testimonial to Kitt Jenae for the exceptional care and quality of her service as a professional horse trainer. Working with me and my 16 hand Quarter Horse gelding, Kitt has been my horse trainer and riding instructor for two years plus now. With a gentle, patient, and fair approach, her special training methods utilize knowledge of the structure, movement, and behavior of the horse to teach valuable horsemanship and equestrian skills emphasizing communication, control, and safety for both horse and rider. What I find especially fun, helpful, and understandable are the visual imagery and colorful descriptions she uses to enjoyably impart the ability to translate instruction into actual practice, whether in the arena or on the trail.
Thank you Kitt, for all your help in so many ways.
Mark Bell, Arroyo Grande, CA
To All Horse Enthusiasts and Lovers:
It is with great pleasure that I recommend Kitt Jenae as my all time favorite horse trainer. To say she is “The Best” is truly an understatement.
Kitt trained, doctored, groomed, and understood my four horses (Arabian stallion, Arabian gelding, American Show horse mare, and my Standardbred gelding off the track) from 1982 to 1992 in Palos Verdes, CA. Then in 1998 resumed again in Nipomo, CA thru 2006.
Sixteen years of fun and SAFETY! NEVER in all those years did I or my horses have anything but the greatest fun during our times with Kitt.
We learned something useful EVERY TIME we got together with Kitt.
I now live and ride in Washington state and miss Kitt a whole lot. No longer feeling quite the same relaxation and confidence as when Kitt was present training and advising.
If you’re a person who insists on perfection and patience in your horse experiences, Kitt is your BEST CHOICE!
I had my 8 yr. old Tennessee Walking Horse for 4 yrs and it seemed that all of a sudden he started to give me trouble. He didn’t want to leave his barn area, he didn’t want to load in the trailer, and he didn’t want to be lead anywhere he didn’t want to go. When he ran off on me while I was walking him on the trail close to the barn, the owner of my barn said I needed to take him to someone to fix his problems as he currently was a danger to me and to others in his way.
The trainer I selected seemed to be pretty horse savvy as she had her own ranch with numerous horses being boarded, trained, bought and sold. My horse ran away with her on him. She said he was a danger to his rider and others in his way.
I couldn’t believe that the horse I had been riding successfully on the trail and in parades could change so drastically and become a horse I didn’t recognize. I was in tears to have a professional say I should stop riding my horse because he was a danger. All I could think of was the wonderful times we had had. How could this happen?
Then I met Kitt Jenae and she said my horse could return to the horse I knew but it would take time and patience to regain his trust and learn how to communicate with him. My horse had become part of our family, we couldn’t just get rid of him so I was willing to do whatever it took to get the horse I bought back to his original good old boy status.
Kitt worked with me on the ground teaching me to get control of his feet. If I could control his feet on the ground, under saddle would be easy. I learned to take control and not let him over power me. He had taught himself that he was going to take charge instead of me. We had to stop that line of thinking. I learned to back him around barrels which helped when I needed to unload him from the trailer, wash rack, or anywhere he was needed to back into or out of.
Kitt showed me how to gain my own self confidence so that he would trust me. I notice now that when he is in an uncomfortable position, I see his ears flick back to check if I am going to make a decision for him. I’ve learned to recognize subtle body positions both his and mine which helps me to communicate with him. I had become complacent, taking for granted that he would always respond positively and I stopped paying attention to him and what he was trying to tell me.
It probably took over a year, but I have my good old boy back! He is relaxed, he tries hard for me and I can now recognize his tries, and I am able to give him his dignity back. He doesn’t need to be scared any more because he now knows that he can depend on me to keep us both safe. I am enjoying my horse and I appreciate “his tries” to give me what I am asking for. We have established a good working relationship.
I thank Kitt for leading me in the right direction. The many hours spent on the ground have given me great pleasure on the back of my beautiful horse.
Pat Dugger, CA
“After only one riding lesson with Kitt, the improvements in my seat and the communication with my Thoroughbred horse were remarkable! Her unique approach to teaching enables the student to create a mental picture of the way a horse moves and how that movement affects the rider’s balance so the two are in sync. I heartily recommend Kitt’s method of instruction and look forward to steady progress in my riding ability as the result of future sessions with her.”
Grace McGettigan, San Pedro, California
“Kitt has unlocked for me the ‘secrets’ of training. She carefully evaluates the individual and horse, matching technique to the horse’s temperament. Her techniques (free of restraints) enable the horse to choose the desired behavior, promoting a softness and willingness to perform. She is working two extremely different horses for me (Arabian and Paint), at the same time, with dramatic results. Kitt’s talents are exactly what I have been searching for. I am getting so much more enjoyment from my horses.”
The more I train/work with my horses, the more I realize that Kitt Jenae’s methods have taught me how to work effectively with my horses and given me the confidence and tools to make the right choices to keep getting good results.
Deah Rudd, Arroyo Grande
I fully recommend Kitt Jenae as an accomplished horse trainer. She is very knowledgeable has a lot of patience with her students, as well as their horses.
I had a very difficult horse and Kitt brought her around to where I could ride her without fear. My horse “Star” was an extremely spooky horse, to the extent she was afraid of her own shadow. I had to lead or rider her on the asphalt to the public arena. She would frequently be difficult to control. I feared her hurting herself, me, or damaging neighbor’s landscapes during her episodes. She was also rough to ride.
Kitt worked her for quite awhile. She was firm, but always handled her with kindness. She also worked with me in developing know-how and riding confidence when leading and riding Star. She put the two of us together and I enjoyed a smoother ride too. 🙂
As Star aged into her teens Kitt’s work in patterning Star to travel balanced (lighter on her front feet) really paid off in another way. It did a LOT in helping her to continue her riding career with comfort, combined with a farrier that keeps her feet in balance.
Star is now 32 years old and anyone can ride her, even children.
Not only Kitt a very good trainer she is also a wonderful friend. I readily recommend Kitt Jenae. I am very happy in that my horse “Star” was trained by Kitt.
“I have a retired race horse and have had him in training over the fourteen years I have owned him. I was always fearful of him. Now Kitt has worked his corners and put ‘buttons’ in place for me to handle him. I ride without fear. She is a rare find. She trains horses, she doesn’t just exercise them.”
Anne Cirocco, Atascadero
(The following was in response to a demonstration I presented in May 2000 in Nipomo, CA)
The horse people loved all of the info they got from Kitt. She really impressed people with the horse’s perspective on things. She shared very guarded secrets of Pat Parelli and John Lyons that people pay lots of money to learn, and they still don’t quite ever figure it out. But, knowing that nothing always works the same every time is not something they share. They have most of us convinced that it is their own patented idea. Pay and I will share. She was so candid and ready for every question with very simple examples and answers. We always try to complicate things and Kitt made it very clear that people are the ones doing that. I really loved the demos.
Diane Royall, Visalia, California
Kitt and I began working together in the spring of 2011 with my injured horse, HoneyMan. While that was 4 years ago, there are aspects that are still clear in my memory. I’ve worked with many trainers, no previous trainer had the ability to read every movement no matter how slight; a twitch of the ear, a look, a way of going, and then understand what it meant and what to do about it. After years of injuries, stall rest, and rehab, my Missouri Fox Trotter had gone from being a wonderful, trustworthy equine pal, to a more anxious and injury prone horse, whose sometimes unstable behavior (bolting, spooking) was making him less safe to ride, when I could.
Due to his injuries, groundwork with free lunging started according to his ability. Kitt’s gentle, patient, knowlegable communication created an environment of control without stress for both HoneyMan and me. Our work began to increase my confidence and understanding, and HoneyMan became more responsive and safer. There were homework assignments and clear explanations of why we did something, which gave me practical tools to use.
While work was interrupted by yet another injury, I gained the skills needed to work with him when his health permitted it.
I found Kitt to be a most special person who truly has a calling to work with animals and people. I am grateful to have her in my life.
Susan Shalit, San Luis Obispo
I have been fortunate to have benefited from Kitt Jenae’s guidance and horse wisdom. Over the years, I have sought assistance from a diverse group of trainers, but none have approached horsemanship and riding in quite the same way that Ms. Jenae did. Her unique perspective and methods have changed the way I view my time with my horse (Andalusian) : both in the saddle and on the ground, and with very positive results.
While I’m riding, I’m so aware of how my work with Ms. Jenae has changed my approach to riding, my understanding of my horse’s movements and body, and ultimately how my actions really do have an effect on my horse. It is great.
Although it is no longer practical for my horse and I to utilize Ms. Jenae’s services, I will always carry with me a great respect and admiration for the work she does. I am grateful for all the help she offered, and each time I ride, I do so while evoking memories of the many lessons she taught me.
Thank you Kitt!
Marianne Byrd, Arroyo Grande,CA
I’ve been involved with horses for many years. I’m the previous owner/manager of River Trail Stables; a 200 horse boarding/training facility situated along the Santa Ana River in the City of Orange, CA.
I sold that facility to one of my trainers in 1990. I retired and moved to Nipomo, CA. I was anxious to work with my newly acquired retirement horse; a 5 year old Peruvian Paso mare named Arriba.
I knew Arriba was going to be a challenge for me. She was extremely “head shy” and exceptionally hesitant with the unfamiliar. Moving her to my ranch away from where she was born didn’t help her “issues.” However, I recognized a wonderfully sweet disposition beneath her fears and felt convinced she had great promise.
Catching her the first time in her new 12 X 18 barn stall took a lot of time and patience. Once she was in hand I opted to put a break away halter on her with a short rope. I knew until some changes were made catching her wouldn’t be any easier the next time. That and her scooting out from under at the first attempt at mounting her told me I needed help with little Ms. Arriba.
Kitt Jenae was recommended to me as a trainer known to have been successful working with similar issues as Arriba’s.
I was quickly made aware of Kitt’s sensitivity, diligence, energy and sense of humor. It made working with her a joy. I was present during all of the training sessions with my horse. Kitt persistently moved along with Arriba. Her dedication to success gave me confidence that I had made the right decision. Kitt taught me natural training techniques to desensitize Arriba. This made us prepared for approaching “horse eating scaries” that spooked the mare in the past.
Kitt gave me “homework” between sessions. These exercises gave me the opportunity to bond closer to my horse. Most important it was rewarding to take part in reinforcing the mare to become more confident.
In my years of owning River Trails I met and observed many trainers during that time. If I were asked what impressed me most in my experience with Kitt I would have to say it was her gentle and effective communication with my mare. Working with Kitt gave me a deeper understanding of what natural horsemanship means. Arriba and I were left with a relationship of trust and mutual respect.
For these reasons I highly recommend Kitt Jenae as a trainer who gets positive results. I do so with absolute confidence. If you have any questions regarding my training experience with Kitt or this recommendation, feel free to contact me at: NancyShipley@msn.com
Nancy Shipley, Nipomo, CA
This is a letter of recommendation for Kitt Jenae. Kitt halter broke and ground trained for race training over 20 Thoroughbred Horses for me in 6 years. Kitt is as knowledgeable of Horses as anyone person I’ve ever met.
I was raised around Horses and have raced Horses at Santa Anita, Hollywood Park, and Del Mar Race track since 1998.
She had full care and is reliable. She also had patience to do the job right.
She also is very observant to catch a Horse that is not traveling correctly or is sick.
If you have any questions please call me.
Before Kitt and I trained together I used to go home frustrated and often with a tear in my eye. Riding my Arabian mare was a chore! Now I can’t wait to get to the barn. My mind goes a thousand miles an hour thinking of all the fun games we will play. I go home now with a smile on my face and a gleam in my eye! My horse has never been so fun to be with!”
Michelle Sanborn, Rolling Hills Estates, CA
From Belgium – Sarah Ruiz
Her thoughts after schooling with Kitt Jenae
Kitt is a very surprising person. She has an amazing personality and she’s a magician with the horses. She loves animals (any kind) and she likes to share her knowledge.
When I first saw her interacting with the horses I thought she was just trying to be the boss without expecting any attention from them. In fact I was wrong. Kitt knows horses (really) and she just put them back to their own space out of hers (I mean that many people let their horses do whatever they want, which is not good, either for the horse or the rider).
When I started to understand Kitt’s work I discovered a new world, a new perception of horse’s acting and personality. Now that I’m back in my country with “normal” horses (which means : horses that have never met Kitt) I really started to see the difference. Many horses are impolite (by moving into space and pressure) and don’t naturally respect humans (respond to them safely).
In Kitt’s ground work I discovered a new approach of “what you can do with or for the horse”. With ground work and free lounging I saw how you really can understand how the horse moves or reacts. I understood why sometimes when I ride I can’t obtain what I want from the horse.
Last week (in my home country) I took a horse riding lesson again, like every week here, and I was the only one that succeeded in the exercise (very simple though : make a very little circle around barrels while cantering). I think it was because I now understand how to help/support the horse to stay balanced!
Anyway, my point here is that Kitt really helped me to see horse riding in a totally different way, I know that I have much more to learn and that’s the reason I’m impatient to go back to Paso Robles !
Thank you Kitt, for everything =)
“My sixteen year old grand-daughter was an angry rider who was at the point of quitting riding. Kitt was able to challenge and empower her to develop her own ability to talk ‘horse’ to her Quarter Horse mare. – Kitt is a beautiful and talented rider and/or teacher of all ages of horses –she has trained new born foals to senior aged horses for me!
Carol Wedgeworth, Santa Maria
“Kitt’s knowledge in working with difficult, resistant horses has helped me and my horse toward a better understanding. She works with you and your horse, not against you. I appreciate the fact that she listens to my concerns, and gently guides me and my horse without undue pressure.”
Joan Morton, Lomita, California