Karen Casto

Karen feels by educating people to better understand horses, she can help make the world a better place for horses. Her goal is to give people as many opportunities as she can, to work with, train and communicate with horses. The more riders she can teach these communication and horsemanship skills, the more horses have productive and comfortable lives.

BACKGROUND

Karen came from Northern Nevada, home to many great horsemen. Growing up on a farm with livestock of all kinds, she worked with and rode everything from mustangs and race horses to warm bloods.  She trained and competed in many different disciplines, both english and western.  Her dressage training has proven to be a very functional tool in her riding and teaching today.

 

She's been riding and training horses for over 50 years; teaching and educating people for 35 years.

 

PRIMARY FOCUS

Safety for horse and rider is always her first objective. Understanding the nature of the horse, and a good centered and balanced seat help promote the safest situation with horses.  Therefore, Karen strives to teach better communication skills and techniques to riders through their body position and movement, which then stabilizes their hands to send clear soft messages through contact with the horse's mouth.

 

PHILOSOPHY

Functional Horsemanship Training prepares a horse to do a job that will provide them with a stimulating life.  A horse that is bored can be dangerous, and can limit the horse's options for quality homes and they can end up neglected or abused.

 

APPROACH OR METHODS

It takes time to train a horse, more than most people today expect. Karen uses a step approach and make sure to build a solid foundation for each new step. If she steps one up and it just can't handle it, she'll  back up and build that last step a little stronger. She believes each horse is an individul.

 

When teaching people, she is proactive on creating appropriate and realistic goals.  Karen will put people in challenging situations to find their weak points, then set goals to overcome those challenges, step-by-step.

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