Horsemanship to Haute École

A systematic guide for dressage training on the ground

Verlag Silke Vallentin u. Karin Schöpke GbR

Silkes Story

How it all started

In 1995, Silke met the “cowboy” Pat Parelli, who was offering a clinics in Berlin, Germany at the time. Silke had signed up because the handling of her heart’s horse, the Friesian Biko, was anything but relaxed and sometimes dangerous. Pat Parelli showed the participants that it does not depend on strength and willpower to communicate with a horse, but rather on the right body language and the release at the right moment.

Silke was fascinated by this way of communication. Only a few days later she noticed a big difference in her relationship with Biko. Silke now worked strictly according to the Parelli program for two years. She was so successful that she was invited by Pat Parelli to Pagosa Springs, Colorado, to learn on the spot.

The beginning of her career as a trainer

In 1999 Silke spent several months at the Parelli Center. And even her biggest dream came true: To ride Biko herself one day. Silke taught her horse to lay down and stay calm when someone climbs quite awkwardly on his back. After a few days, the time had come: Silke rode Biko – first in the training arena and then even on a ride with Pat Parelli into the wilderness at the foot of the Rocky Mountains. An unforgettable experience. And to her great surprise, at the end of her stay, she became a licensed Parelli professional – at that time one of the first in Germany.

From then on, Silke taught the Parelli program, regularly participated in the advanced training weeks in the USA, but also continued her education with many other trainers. Among others, she learned from the legendary horse trainer Fredy Knie senior, improved her horsemanship skills with Ray Hunt, the “Master of Communication”, visited riding master Bent Branderup or exchanged ideas with the “horse whisperer” Alexander Nevzorow in Russia.