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 Heather Rocca's Students Speak



           Sherrie riding "Nemo" before learning                     to sit back and ride from her seat          


        Sherrie riding "Pippin" after training under      Heather Rocca for One year



I've been seriously riding horses since 2002 and have had several different instructors, but none of them compare to Heather Rocca.  Heather is patient yet assertive, with a gentle but firm hand .  She takes her time studying each horse and rider and is eager to demonstrate what any rider doesn't understand.  Heather tries different techniques before jumping in to any situation and is sure to work on every horse's mannerisms. 
As a rider I've come so far training under Heather in the past year.  It's been a satisfying journey learning to sit back and ride from my seat rather than my hands and to actually ride a horse rather than being a passenger.  Not only am I proud to be an accomplished rider, but I've finally learned how to effectively ride my own horse, Nemo.  Nemo is a re-start Thoroughbred who was resisting under previous instructors because he was pushed too hard too soon.  Heather decided the best solution for Nemo was to go back to square one and teach him the basics after he spent some time just being a horse.  Once he has a solid foundation of "dressage" then, and only then, will he be ready to jump again.  Horses hold a special place in my heart and for this reason I'm a firm believer that they should only be trained and ridden under the Natural Horsemanship.  Nemo and I now share a special bond between us because Heather took the time to help me retrain and ride Nemo using Natural Horsemanship.
My daughter, Vanessa, has come from the same instructors and the same discipline background as myself and has also been training under Heather for the past year.  I've watched her blossom into a mature rider with a lot of hidden talent.  Riding and jumping from her seat rather than her hands, and for the first time, ''riding'' her horse.  Vanessa is someone who I, as her mom, am very proud of!                
                                                                                                                                   - Sherrie Bellerose



                                                 Thank You Heather!


click on the picture for a special slideshow

             Vanessa jumping Ariel while training           
   under Heather Rocca



 December 23, 2008

Heather Rocca has been in my employ for the past four years starting as a hippotherapy horse leader/sidewalker working up toward office administration and eventually horse coordinator.  She taught lessons using my horses during this time from beginner to more advanced levels.  She coached at least four of her students at local shows.  I would also like to add that I first met her when she was 13 years old working at the same barn that I was at study.  On more than one occasion, she demonstrated back then her knowledge of horses, tack and riding as well as carried a presence about her that was well beyond her chronological years.  

Heather was reliable, responsible and was loyal to her schedule and her appointments.  Bad weather or compromised health did not stop her from coming in and doing her job.  She always knew what blanket to put on which horse ( we have six ), who needed shoeing when and what the wormer schedule was.  She was alert to horses losing weight, when the chiropractor was needed and if massage would help a hippo horse relax in the hips.  Heather was very independent and when trouble unrelated to her, was happening around her, Heather handled herself well.  Barns can be very political as you know.

Her lessons progressed well as one of her beginner students is now cantering comfortably and at ease with grace.  She was well liked by her students and parents and her office manner was well liked by parents and children.
Heather will be missed by HorseTalk but I know she will do well wherever she goes.  

                                                                                                       - Toby Freeman, M.S., C.C.C.-Sp.
                                                                                                         Speech-Language Pathologist
                                                                                                         Director, HorseTalk Hippotherapy



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