November 2020 Newsletter

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Brainworks Newsletter
November 2020


Greetings, everyone!
Thanks for being part of Horse Brain, Human Brain. This newsletter will keep you up to date on the book’s progress, current reviews and excerpts, the “True Training” blog, a question/answer forum, and various interviews and events. I appreciate so much your interest in my work and your support during the release of this book. Together, we can improve the lives of a lot of horse-and-human teams in the world.
The Book Report

The first printing of HBHB sold out in one month despite pandemic shutdowns. My wonderful publisher Trafalgar Square Books ( never had a book fly off the shelf that fast in over 30 years of equestrian publishing. We are now on the third printing, available in print or electronically through bookstores and online retailers worldwide. If you haven't read it yet, grab a copy. Maybe the winter holidays will give you more time to read on those days you can’t ride. Meanwhile, four countries are already translating HBHB into their languages--Japan, Germany, Poland, and Spain.

Early reviewers include top international trainers and Olympian riders Denny Emerson, Tik Maynard, and Eric Smiley, as well as Wendy Williams, author of the New York Times bestselling book The Horse. Brief bios and the complete text of their reviews are on my Facebook page. Check ‘em out if you like!
Published reviews since then have appeared in American Farriers Journal, The American Endurance Ride Conference Extra, The Mid-South Horse Review, The Literate Equine, Catskill Horse Magazine, Northwest Horse Source, and Horse Network. More are in press with a wide variety of equine publications.
What I like most about these reviews is that they’re spread across disciplines. Where else do we bring together harness trotters, endurance riders, Icelandic enthusiasts, Olympian jumper riders, natural historians, farriers, brain scientists, Western riders, English riders, barn staff, international trainers, and veterinarians? If you and your horse have brains, you’re a valued member of the group.



My website ( contains links to the complete reviews, but here are a few snippets:
“…the book the horse world has been waiting for... a game changer.”     -- Tik Maynard
“required reading for all equestrians… absolutely fantastic.”     --Tonya Johnston 
“a fresh and meticulously researched guide to the equine brain… essential reading for any horseman… easy to digest… full of tiny gems of narrative.”     -- Gretchen Lida
“completes my trifecta of horsemanship references, which includes Tom Dorrance’s True Unity and Ray Hunt’s Think Harmony with Horses… written so perfectly that virtually anyone can use it... a must for professional farriers…”     -- James Wyatt Weatherford
“a myth-busting heart-warming book… delves deeply into the truth about the complexity of horses’ inner lives.”     -- Wendy Williams



Excerpts of HBHB have appeared in Jumper Nation (“Brace Yourself: Your Horse Needs 45 Minutes to See Clearly in the Indoor,” July 23, 2020), and on Horse Network (“What That Whinny Means,” June 22, 2020). Trafalgar Square has created several graphics like the one to the right, illustrating concepts from the book. In October, I posted a pair of drawings from HBHB on Facebook – it got over 36,000 views. 



Eventing USA reprinted a section on equine depth perception with respect to horses’ ability to judge the height, width, and location of jumps (“How the Horse’s Limited Ability to See Depth Should Affect the Way you Jump,” July/August 2020).
And EQUUS magazine excerpted an entire chapter from the book. Titled “The 6 Ways Horses Learn,” it’s featured as the cover article in their Autumn 2020 issue. Many of you know that EQUUS is where I cut my teeth describing the neuroscience of horsemanship, with over 20 articles in their pages since 2014.


The Blog
Those of you who read my blog “True Training” know that I have a 1250-pound baby to entertain and educate every day. The blog is named after the horse (“True”) and devoted to his training. It contains 24 posts so far, with a new one added every two weeks. They run the gamut of catch training, learning to tie, grooming, groundwork, building trust, establishing pace, the discovery ride, the free burn, killer birds—all with an eye toward how we can work with our horses’ brains instead of against them. You can find the blog on my website (

One of my most pleasant experiences this fall was to co-teach the Applied Large Animal Behavior course required of all veterinary students at Colorado State University. I love the opportunity to work with current and coming generations of veterinarians—the people who devote their lives to the health and welfare of our magnificent animals. CSU faculty have invited me to bring horse brains back to the second half of their veterinary students in February 2021.


Horse Network Reads” broadcast a live video interview of me talking about brain-based training on October 16, 2020. Click on the link and have a look!


I’ve also been interviewed on three podcasts so far. Listen at these links:


Most of my presentations for 2020 were cancelled due to the pandemic, but some of my upcoming talks have already been rescheduled for 2021. They include: 

  • CSU Veterinary School in Fort Collins, Colorado - February 2021
  • Equitana USA in Lexington, Kentucky - September 2021
  • Equine Affaire in Springfield, Massachusetts - November 2021
  • Horse Education and Therapy International (HETI) Congress in Seoul, South Korea - June or November 2021



Educational Experiences
A bunch of you have asked about clinics and workshops. I offer a selection of about 20 discussion-oriented topics within the brain science of horsemanship. You choose your topics, and I’ll tailor a program for you. These are currently presented online but will also be offered in person (along with mounted clinics, as requested) when travel restrictions ease.
I also provide online consultation to anyone who wants help with specific horses or riding concerns. My clients and I have discovered that it works surprisingly well. If you’d like more information about these experiences, please email me at

The Q/A Forum
I get some great questions about horses and thought it would be fun to share a few of them with you. Here’s a recent example: