By Joan Reinbott
Leg Up Farm in Mount Wolf, Pa., has horses and horse lovers well versed in natural horsemanship thanks to Dan Roser, a certified public accountant turned licensed Parelli Professional. From January to August 2018, Roser visited from his own Hollyberry Farm Center for Natural Horsemanship, 20 minutes down the road. Powered by a Parelli Foundation grant, Roser gave four all-day clinics and eight short training sessions. He made his work sustainable by leaving behind a “Warm Up” video for existing and future staff.
Jennifer Hitz, Chief Development Officer at Leg Up Farm, said: “One of the most inspiring stories came from a volunteer, Paula (shown in the photo), who has been with our organization for over 4 years. What she shared is how she would sit in trainings with Dan
and watch what he did with the horses thinking there’s no way she could ever have the same effect. However, in Paula’s words, ‘because of Dan’s gentle manner and his unparalleled teaching skills, we all came to realize that we COULD have the same impact. It changed my level of confidence and my relationship with the horses. I give Dan two thumbs up!’ ”
Roser is especially gifted at motivating horses that some people have labeled “lazy” and “pushy.” He does this by passing on some wisdom he learned from Pat Parelli: “Techniques are nothing if you can’t read a horse.”
Hitz explained that as new volunteers are onboarded into Leg Up Farm’s riding program, the video serves as a powerful natural horsemanship resource, one that will be used for years to come. “In fact, Leg Up Farm benefits from 250−300 active volunteers at any given point in time,” she said. “For all of these individuals to have access to Dan’s unparalleled knowledge is an amazing feat.”
Leg Up Farm hopes to benefit from a continued partnership with Roser as they continue to serve children with special needs. For more information, visit https://www.legupfarm.org/.