Equi-libre Horses

Positively coaching the art & science of horsemanship and equitation; enabling you to bring your equine dreams to life

Straight & Supple Training

Balanced HorseStraight & Supple Training is a comprehensive online home study training course available ONLY to Members of The Academy.

“I strongly believe in the classical riding principles, but have always questioned the interpretation and application of them. Even when watching the most experienced and respected classical riders, I felt that there was some form of emotional disconnect, within the culmination of the two souls. I just couldn’t dismiss the unsettled feeling deep within my soul on a subconscious emotional level – the horses’ body language rarely depicts a happy, relaxed horse.” – Jo Hughes 


→ Learn more about Jo Hughes’ ground-breaking Straight & Supple Training course.


This exciting NEW ground-breaking course takes you on a journey into the foundation principles and theory behind Classical Equitation and Training as well as providing the student with a structured and in-depth process of exactly how to train your horse towards classical balance and lightness from the ground onwards to ridden.

“This pioneering and groundbreaking course is the culmination of my life-long passion and development resulting from many years of research, study, practical knowledge and applied experience of the history of this beautiful classical art, detailing exactly what the age-old classical principles are and exactly how they can and should be adhered to for the good of the horse.” – Jo Hughes

Level 1 – Foundation Principles & Theory

Correct Use of MusclesSo many well intentioned, loving horse owners have never even heard of classical dressage, let alone know what it is and what separates it from any other riding or training out there, or why correctly trained classical dressage is actually of benefit to the horse compared to mainstream modern dressage, which instead is often detrimental to them both physically and psychologically.

I passionately believe it’s about time we brought this understanding back, so that we can take steps to ensure our horses are protected from the psychological damage and physical injury that occurs from our human ignorance, no matter how unintentional it is, so that they stop being used for our own gain, serving purely as extensions of our own ego and glory at their own physical and mental expense and demise.

Click here to view the course outline for Level 1

Overview of Level 1

Skill Level & Pre-requisites

No previous knowledge in these topics required. Students must have completed and passed the How Horses Learn, Feel & Communicate course

Number of modules


Course Duration

Home Study Course – 6 months

No Attendance Required

Conducted by home study

Level 2 – Foundation Behaviours

TargetingLevel 2 delves into deep into the ‘how-to’ training of the 12 foundation behaviours of Straight & Supple Training. These detailed online seminars will literally blow your mind with their attention to detail!

We cover absolutely EVERYTHING you need to know to be able to help your horse heal emotionally from any previous aversive-based training.

From the incredible power of conditioned (secondary) aversives and ridiculously detailed step by step coaching showing video footage of real horses actually learning these behaviours and cues, all the way through to explaining how to implement the stages of the WHOLE process of a training a behaviour from initial formation with positive reinforcement, as well as how to exactly how to maintain the horse’s motivation to perform it once trained.

S&S Level 2The practical training in this course does NOT rely on force via the application, and removal of aversives to form, and reinforce, behaviours. Instead, I focus on teaching you how to create sound, balanced riding horses from the ground up forming behaviours using appetitives and positive reinforcement, thereby fostering and growing true emotional relaxation and a trust-based relationship.

Click here to view the course outline for Level 2

Overview of Level 2

Skill Level & Pre-requisites

No previous knowledge in these topics required. Students must have completed Level 1 of the Straight & Supple Training Course

Number of modules


Course Duration

Home Study Course – 12 months

No Attendance Required

Conducted by home study

  • The course material throughout the Straight & Supple Training course is delivered entirely online through video lectures in the classroom and forum inside The Academy

→ Preparation training for riding using force-free positive reinforcement based training techniques


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Would you love to understand what exactly defines classical equitation, learn just how far modern dressage training has strayed from it’s classical roots, explore equine anatomy, equine asymmetries and imbalances and why these damage horses physically?

Would you also like to learn how to gymnastically strengthen your horse, to help him to correctly balance, to communicate with him via a mutually understood language through forming behaviours using appetitives/positive reinforcement rather than those based on coercion or compulsion (via the use of aversives/negative reinforcement as is the case for all mainstream classical training)?

If you are looking for a way to ultimately adhere to the real classical principles of preserving and prolonging your horse’s soundness, to understand both his physical and psychological state in order to produce a horse who uses his body efficiently through balance and suppleness, become a Member of The Academy and join us on our Straight & Supple course.

“Equitation is confessedly a science; every science is founded upon principles and theory must indispensably be necessary, because what is truly beautiful cannot depend upon chance.” – Earl of Pembroke speaking in 1778

Academy Members accessing the course on an iPad or other mouse-less device click here

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