-Steve Halfpenny, Light Hands Equitation
-Tanja Mitton, Equine Success & Mindset
-Manolo Mendez, Training for Wellness
David and his family live in Bendigo, Victoria. David is a trainer and coach for horsewomen, horsemen and their equine athletes and companions. David's work has been driven by his high level of insight and understanding of the nature of the horse paired which his ability to help people to develop a better relationship with their horses.
From working with his own horses, David has been influenced by his fascination for vaquero style horsemanship & old style classical dressage training.
Vaquero style horsemanship refers back to the Spanish tradition of working & riding horses using a traditional rawhide Hackamore. This style has been used in central California for many hundreds of years.
It is based on long-term training on the ground and in the saddle, subtle and soft movements with a harmonious understanding between the horse and the rider. It also influenced the Natural Horsemanship movement to a large degree.
David's mentors for the classical training is a combination of Manolo Mandez, Bent Branderup and Thomas Ritter. He believes in using the traditional cavesson and bamboo to develop the relaxed balanced posture that is critical for any horse. Using the teachings and knowledge he has learned from his mentors David believes that every horse can benefit from this training.
The principles of David's Natural Horsemanship philosophy have come primarily from Steve Halfpenny at Light Hands Equitation. They can be adopted for any discipline and leads to a horse that is balanced, soft, calm, connected and confident. David helps owners and horse lovers to develop into horsemen and horsewomen who enjoy respectful, safe but most of all rewarding, engaging relationships with their horses.
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"Hi Dave, The training that you have given me is always in my mind & I’m extremely grateful for your skill & your approach to horses & people. I don’t know if anyone else would have gotten me to where I am with Millie. Even though you might have thought I was the wrong person to work with her initially, you were prepared to give me a go & I never felt judged or incompetent- quite the opposite- your lessons always empowered me. This has been no small thing in my life- working with Millie with your instruction has taught me to assert myself, to stand my ground, to be tough when I need to. I’m extremely grateful for this. "
"I completed my first clinic with David today & absolutely loved it. He's amazing at what he does - cannot wait till the next clinic. Thanks David for the huge boost in confidence"
"Thank you, thank you, thank you, Dave. Your clinic I attended was amazing, mind blowing, it woke me up and opened my eyes to the truth about my 6 year old OTT aka Oscar. I remember giving up and coming back for the second day saying” I give up I’ll sell him” and you said “after 6 month you will have a different horse” well you were right. After subsequent clinics with you I have felt the need to aim higher and expect more from Mr Oscar. I have attended 5 clinics with you and the horse I have today is one that is very different to the braced “ready to explode horse I had back in 2010. I would never had imagined after that first clinic I would be riding bareback in a rope halter, or even considering riding on the beach. Thank you "
"You know what it feels like when you and your horse have ground to a halt at the crossroads: which road to take? You've tried a few side roads but they have ended up as deadends. Four days with David Mellor pointed the way forward for my mare and me, and life became full of colour again."
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