by Mitchell Kirk
BUNKER HILL —
When Bunker Hill resident Eunice Rush worked in sales, she used her education in business math and management information technology to teach a class on how to identify clients’ personality types and how to highlight areas of one’s own personality to form an effective business relationship.
When Rush met Marry Morrow of Denver at a horse retreat, the two began discussing their own theories about how the same holds true when it comes to equestrians and their horses.
Soon they put their theories to the test, preparing more than 200 surveys and spending the next two years traveling to horse parks and training barns across Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. They interviewed riders, prepared a composite of their personalities and observed their horses to assess what makes them tick well.
What came from it all is their book, “Know You, Know Your Horse,” published in January by international publishing company Trafalgar Square. Rush wrote the part of the book pertaining to assessing human personalities while Morrow addresses those of horses.
“I look at your birth order, learning styles, your basic core personality, whether you’re introverted, extroverted, right brain, left brain and make up a composite person... to help you truly understand you,” Rush said.
Rush’s prose also goes into detail about different learning styles people adopt and how to interact with them. The Bunker Hill resident said many people who don’t even own horses buy the book for this reason, like businesspeople and teachers.
After you understand yourself, then it’s time to understand your horse, whether its one you already own or one you plan on getting. That’s where Morrow’s part of the book comes in.
“Does your horse like to go all day?” Morrow said she asks in the book. “Does it like to go for four hours then be done? Have you always had your horse? Where did it come from? Who trained it? Does it like to stand still? Does it get frustrated when it stands still? These basic questions give me a window.”
Horses share many of the same learning styles and personalty types as humans, said Morrow, who has been riding horses since she was a child and currently works as a trainer.
“A horse tells you what it wants to do, what it likes and what gives it security,” Morrow said. “Then I look at the people. Do the people match? If there’s a horse that’s an extrovert, then I’m looking for a human that’s an extrovert... They’re a more aggressive rider. They have just a little bit more energy, which would mesh with an extroverted horse better because that horse wants to move.”
Not that this is always the case, Morrow continued.
“Once you adapt to a horse, over time that horse will actually come toward your personality,” she said. “Bring up the energy if you’re an introvert because you’re the kind of person who tries to slow things down and you’re going to be putting that on the horse. If it’s a good bond, the horse will come to your personality and you’ll go to theirs and you’ll start to see things work out.”
The authors said a large part of the motivation behind the book was to help people get the right horse the first time rather than getting one that doesn’t mesh well with the rider and having to start the whole process over again.
“For a first-time buyer, we explain how to buy a horse that matches your personality so you have a better relationship with the horse right up front,” Rush said. “For a lot of people, it’s trial and error. We help them buy the right horse the first time.”
“Know You, Know Your Horse” is available at ridesafe2day.com, Den-Mar’s Horse Cents in Peru and retailers like Barnes & Noble and amazon.com.
There will be copies for sale at a book signing at 7 p.m. tomorrow at the Logansport-Cass County Public Library, 616 E. Broadway. A lecture will also accompany the signing.
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or firstname.lastname@example.org.