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Rebel Equi-Learning: Horses Teaching Humans

Rebel Equi-LearningRENNER, S.D. -Professional development is an important process for every working man and woman to go through to help them become better leaders in the workplace and communicate effectively with coworkers.
Laura Jenson, “The Horse Lady” as she is often known, teaches professional development like leadership, communication, and teamwork, outside of the office—outside of any building, in fact. Her budding small business Rebel Equi-Learning is ‘where the horses do the teaching.’

Jenson brings career men and women out of their cubicles and onto her ranch in Renner for a time of personal growth with the help of her five rescue horses.
“I didn’t really like going to conventional workshops and things for continuing education, so I made my own method of teaching,” she said.

The Rebel method: combining a decade of experience as a therapist with the Parelli Natural Horsemanship program, which is about improving interactions between humans and their horses.

In four sessions, one full day and three half days, participants are tasked with convincing these natural-born skeptics, as Jenson calls them, to trust and perform feats like running in pairs or touching a barrel. Aside from working with the horses, the group takes time to discuss what they’re learning and how it can be applied in their office space.

“It’s very little about the accomplishment, but it’s more so about getting the horse invested in what we’re doing,” Jenson explained. “We do all the work. They already know how to be horses; we just need to learn how to be better people.”

It’s not about what you say in your words, but what you say in your actions. The horses teach that it’s less about control and placing blame, and more about communicating effectively, all of which can be taken back to the office.

“We can take that directly back into our interactions and continue that awareness about, ‘Am I being effective or not?’ and instead of blaming someone else for not understanding,” she explained.
Personal growth, Jenson said, extends beyond the workplace into life itself.

“No matter what you’re learning—leadership, communication, trust-building—it’s not a set of skills. It’s a process of internal reflection and growth and personal growth,” she said. “I guess that’s where the therapist in me comes out, that everyone, no matter how perfect they think they are or how good of a job they’re doing, can use some personal growth.”

Friday, November 20, Jenson will have one of her horses out at The Bakery in downtown Sioux Falls for live demonstrations of her program, free to the public.
For more information about Rebel Equi-Learning, click here.