Success Stories

Curious about what it’s like to work with Emily? Below you can read student testimonials that students have shared about their experience.

My pelvis and spine are more connected through to my horse

“I had an amazing session with Emily. I felt much more aware of my body. I noticed before riding that I could breathe better because my shoulders were softer. I also noticed my pelvis and spine were more connected through to my horse and my legs were moving into a better position on their own. It was awesome–and all after just one lesson!! Thanks, Emily!”

Christie Winkelman, ND, MA
Naturopathic Physician & Counselor,
Owner Insights to Health Clinic, InsightsND.com

I feel awesome! I can’t wait for more!

“After one lesson with Emily, I no longer had backpain and sciatica during my rides or long drives. A huge bonus is that my horse Violet is more round, collected and responsive to my aids. I feel awesome! I can’t wait for more lessons!”

Catherine Ulrey
Realtor, HomesWithHorseSense.com

I realized that if I was going to continue to improve my riding and overall well-being, I needed to do something more

“I’d been working with Peggy Cummings of Connected Riding TM since July of 2010. I was still having difficulty consistently maintaining what she calls neutral pelvis.

I saw a demonstration Emily gave, and I realized that I needed to study with her in depth. Alexander Technique is recom- mended by Peggy Cummings to her Connected Riding students. From that first lesson with Emily in January of 2013, I was really aware of my body.

I feel much more connected to my horses with the added practice of Alexander Technique. I’m noticing improvements in both the horses and me. When I ride and I release my own neck, my horses often soften and improve too!

One day I woke up with this horrible throbbing headache that was just unbearable. I thought something was really wrong be- cause I felt dizzy. I lay down in the active rest position for 15 to 20 minutes. The pain wasn’t completely gone, but it was totally bearable. I did a few chores in the barn, and then did active rest again. After that the headache was gone!

I’m a very busy person and I’m always rushing around. I identify that as a problem. I need to slow down. When I practice Active Rest it releases tension, pain, and stiffness throughout my body and calms me down. I’ve learned a great tool to help me deal with my busy life.”

Karen Cheeke
Connected Riding TM Practitioner, ConnectedRiding.com

My back pain went away very quickly and I have significantly less knee pain

“I have scoliosis and poor knee conformation. As a result, I’ve had chronic back pain and knee pain for most of my adult life.

For years prior to my sessions with Emily, I was taking aspirin or acetaminophen nearly every day to alleviate my back and knee pain.

Now, I can address pain as I feel it developing by applying the techniques Emily has taught me.

I love having skills to implement when I feel tense and the ability to reduce pain without medication.

When I apply the Alexander Technique, I can easily feel the pain going away. I no longer have to take as much pain medica- tion, nor do I need to take it as frequently.

My back pain went away very quickly, and I have significantly less knee pain. The knee pain has taken a little longer to ad- dress, but the results have been great!

Thank you!”

Kathy Hall
Equine Law Attorney, PNWEquineLaw.com

I balance easier when standing and sitting, and I move easier without pain.

I had tension headaches, neck pain and low back pain when standing for long periods at my job.

After my first lesson the tension in my body greatly diminished. Now I balance easier when standing and sitting, and I move easier without pain. My neck rotation is way more fluent as well.

I’m much more in control of my body!

Andrea Shattuck-Bosshammer
Surgical Nurse

The benefits were exponential over time, but the first lesson was all it took!

“At 46, I had accumulated lots of injuries and wear and tear from horse-related falls and a terrible car accident years before.

I was dealing with pain and stiffness from my cervical fusion (neck vertebrae) and knee surgery.

I couldn’t believe that after one lesson with Emily, my body could be so light and free! My muscular habits of compensating for my injuries were so ingrained that I thought it would take much longer to see results.

The benefits were exponential over time, but the first lesson was all it took!

I had my second knee surgery while actively taking lessons, and the recovery from that surgery was far quicker than with the previous one.

Putting the technique into practice greatly reduced my chronic pain and stiffness, particularly my sciatica which I’ve suffered with for years.

I am so much more aware of my posture whether riding a horse, driving my car, standing, walking or sitting at the computer. When I can bring my awareness to tension in my body, I find that I can easily let it go.

When I change how I use my body, it affects my emotions in a positive way. I feel free, light and happy.

Alexander Technique is profound. The feeling is as profound as those moments of magical oneness and freedom that we have when we’re riding.

In my 20-plus years as a riding instructor, I’ve found that most problems encountered by riders start with postural habits and unresolved muscle tension. This blocks the horse from using their body correctly.

Having Alexander lessons with Emily will help riders resolve the tension and lets them find greater harmony and connection with their horses!”

Erin Martin
Award-winning ARIA Certified Dressage Instructor
EAGALA Certified Equine Specialist

I always thought I would have to work harder to achieve more, but this amazing body awareness was simple and easy.

When I first saw Emily, I was determined to recover from my horseback riding accident even though doctors told me I might not ride again.

My left leg was broken in 3 places, including where it attaches to the hip. I gained 30 pounds and did not feel like myself anymore.

When I attempted riding, I had trouble using my seat bones to cue the horse effectively because my leg was weak and my balance was off.

After just one lesson with Emily, the effect was immediate and to be honest, I did not expect it. How could something so gentle be so powerful?

I felt a lightening of my body and at the same time I felt stronger. I always thought I would have to work harder to achieve more, but this amazing body awareness was simple and easy.

I am in control of both sides of my body again, allowing me to help and not interfere with the horse’s movement. I went on to show, teach riding lessons again, and enjoy my horse every day.

Sometimes at the end of a long day when I’m tired, my walk lurches a bit, but whenever I remember to apply what I learned with Emily, I can correct it.

With my Alexander Technique lessons, I got back the feeling of freedom that I had before my accident!”

Paula Everett
2nd Level Dressage Rider

Freeing up tensed muscles somehow helps me see new perspectives and opportunities. I’m much more open to new ways of thinking, and I feel positive about life!

“When I met Emily I was a life-long athlete recovering from major knee surgery. I was having a tough time regaining strength and balance that had once come so easily.

I was also dealing with an empty nest, returning to school and changing careers all at once. I actually didn’t think I could go on living if I couldn’t get some help dealing with all of these physical issues and life transitions.

Psychotherapy was helping me understand myself and my life, but I was so tense mentally and physically that I was unable to integrate what I was learning in therapy. I needed to be able to calm down and release tension in order to make the changes I needed to make.

Emily’s gentle, hands on approach with the Alexander Technique has been extremely valuable. I’ve learned to release tension in my body–something I wasn’t able to do with therapy alone. It’s like the therapist is helping make changes in thought patterns while Alexander is helping make changes in body patterns. They go together.

As soon as I began lessons, I started feeling better right away. My balance improved and I’m getting stronger every day. I now use Alexander Technique whenever I get a backache or tension from sitting and studying too long. I can stop the cycle of tension and pain before it takes hold.

Freeing up tensed muscles somehow helps me see new perspectives and opportunities. I’m much more open to new ways of thinking, and I feel positive about life!”

Elizabeth Walton*
Graduate Student, Rider
*not her real name

Now my horse responds better when I think
about the things Emily guided me through.
I’m really pleased!

“Body awareness is so important for riders! Before I attended Emily’s Alexander Technique on Horseback clinic, my left side was not as coordinated as my right.

After the workshop, I had more of a sense of when “I was in tune”. Now my horse responds better when I think about the things Emily guided me through. I’m really pleased!”

Nancy Speisser, Rider

The sense of harmony in my body gives me so much more harmony with the horse as well.
LOVE IT!!!!

“When I came to Emily’s Alexander Technique on Horseback clinic, I was struggling with lower back tension that has been a part of everything that I do for many years. It impacted my riding and my job as a dental hygienist. I couldn’t really address it because I wasn’t fully aware of it!

For me learning Alexander Technique has been a very gradual process. I’m still dealing with some of the problems, but much more effectively than ever before, and I’m delighted with my progress!

The heightened awareness, especially when I shorten my spine or tighten my hips or shoulders, allows me to make the changes I need without tensing the opposing muscles.

This has improved my feel for the horse tremendously. It’s an ongoing process, but the sense of harmony in my body gives me so much more harmony with the horse as well. LOVE IT!!!!”

Elena Cook
Dental Hygienist, Rider

When I acknowledge my need to be in touch with myself, I’m more in sync with my horse.
And I’m able to access even more harmony, lightness and ease!

“I met Emily and when I was training to become an Alexander instructor myself. As a rider and a massage therapist, I was dealing with poor body mechanics that impacted many areas of my life.

Saddle work with Emily helped me understand that my poor postural habits affect my horse, and both of our performance.

Most riders have an inner guidance that tunes in to the horse. We recognize when we are in sync. Horse and rider become one.

One of the key things I learned with Alexander Technique is “focus on thyself”. Whether I’m doing a massage or riding, if I’m tense in a particular area, my tension will transfer to my client or to the horse.

When I practice Alexander Technique, I can release my own tension and my massage clients are happier.

When I acknowledge my need to be in touch with myself while I’m riding, I’m more in sync with my horse. And I’m able to access even more harmony, lightness and ease!”

Debbie Romero
Licensed Massage Therapist
Alexander Technique Teacher Trainee
Rider