Hi, my name is Steffi.
Equine Scientist (MSc) and Therapist (ESMT)
offering Holistic Equine Training, Therapy and Rehabilitation, 1:1 Coaching and Workshops
Living and breathing horses
At the age of 11 my path took me to a stable each week, which hasn’t changed until today. The more I was able to learn, the more I wanted to know. In 2009 I moved to Cambridge (UK) and started a new chapter.
2013 I successfully completed my BSc in Equine Studies (Cambridge, UK). 2014 I also certified as an ESMT (Equine Sports Massage Therapist) via Equissage Europe (UK) and in 2016 I gained my MSc in Equine Science (Edinburgh, UK). I also worked with the Animal Health Trust (Newmarket, UK) as a Temporary Research Assistant on various studies during my degrees, after which I moved back to Germany.
I have specialised in Equine Welfare, Therapy & Rehabilitation, Biomechanics/Biotensegrity, Equitation Science and Equine Husbandry.
Whilst working as a consultant on various projects in said fields, I learned that equine science is the foundation of our knowledge, but it cannot account for everything. The practical implementation starts with YOU. Therefore I also aim to help you with your personal development and creating a mindful, lasting and force-free horse-human-connection.
Soundness to me is not just a word to describe a horse, it is a way of living and interacting.
The moment everything changed for me
When my mare Sun came to live with me in the UK she was at first kept in a single paddock with some other horses over the fence. Pretty soon I realised that she became depressed and everything turned into either a battle or a complete freakout. Sun was wilting away in front of my eyes. Something HAD to change. Pretty much NOW.
I soon found a little Exmoor Pony which was looking for a new home on loan. We went to see her and she seemed perfect, so she moved in. At that stage I had my own little DIY paddock trail. Bee was perfect for Sun, they never fought and instantly connected. Sun was happy and so was I.
Not long after Bee’s arrival everything changed again. This time, for me. The horses were best of friends, but all of a sudden I could no longer touch Bee. She showed me more than once that people had not best treated her in the past. Everything sent her into fight/flight/freeze/fawn. She showed a strong dislike for the farrier, vets, enclosed spaces, saddles (even just from observation perspective) and so much more. Everything turned into to an attack. I was even unable to put on a headcollar for 6 months. Every form of pressure lead to her bolting, rearing, biting or kicking.
Bee encouraged me to question and completely re-think everything I learned and believed about horses to this point. I thought I’d always questioned methods and beliefs, but this was when I knew I had to become the change myself.
And so with the help of my two girls, my journey to Holistic Horsemanship started.
Science for Soundness was born out of the idea to share this journey, help other likeminded horse owners establish a true connection with their horses and encourage their horses to feel and do better in themselves. Horsemanship is not about dominating another living breathing being, it’s about a mutual dialogue founded on trust and an understanding for each other. Once you’ve entered this magic space, you’ll never want to go back!
My secret: true connection starts within.
The holistic approach
Holistic in my view means to consider and encompass every area of our horses, from feeding regime, to equipment and farriery, training and healthcare as well as husbandry (and everything inbetween).
The horse takes the central role in everything I do. Their suggestions are always considered. Their individuality is acknowledged and appreciated.
My herd lives in a paddock paradise surrounding our house. They also have pastures with a lake and are free to decide what they want to do and when they feel like doing it. I love their autonomy and I feel even more humble to be chosen by them.
We enjoy trying new things and exploring the countryside together. Bee is also enjoying life. She still is and always will be a huge character, but she successfully left the past behind and embraces the NOW. She loves going on hacks. Bee especially shines during loose work, where she can best express herself. Here in this photo she is enjoying a little splash.
Being on this journey together with my herd allowed us each to keep our mind open, to consistently stretch into our next level, it gave us confidence, autonomy and opened up space for a true connection on a much deeper level.