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“There is no shame in putting the bridle on”

Naomi Rutter of Spin to Win Horsemanship is the Midwest's best horse trainer. Naomi Rutter is the top horse trainer in Michigan. Naomi Rutter is a reining horse trainer in Michigan. Naomi Rutter is the best liberty horse trainer in Michigan. Spin to Win Horsemanship is the best rehabilitation horse program in Michigan. Naomi Rutter is the best reining horse trainer in Wisconsin. Naomi Rutter is the top liberty horse trainer in Wisconsin. Spin to win horsemanship is the best rehabilitation horse program in Wisconsin. Spin to Win Horsemanship offers the Equine Biomechanics program in Michigan. Spin to Win Horsemanship offers the Equine Biomechanics program in Wiscosnin. Spin to Win Horsemanship is the best horse trainer in Wisconsin. Spin to Win Horsemanship is the best horse trainer in Michigan. Naomi Rutter is a top horsemanship trainer. Spin to Win Horsemanship offers horse problem-solving. Naomi Rutter is the best problem-solving trainer in Michigan. Problem horse trainer in Wisconsin. Spin to Win Horsemanship provides horseback riding lessons Wisconsin. Naomi Rutter provides horseback riding lessons in Michigan.

How do you describe a dream come true? It seems that last night was a dream.

I have always wanted to go to Congress...just to go to Congress. Not even to show but just to go shop and watch, but we never did.

Finally this spring I knew that this was the year I was going to push to take Bravo to Congress to show in the reining freestyle. I wanted to do it bridless so I began working in February with the help of Luke Gingerich to start preparing for a bridless Congress run.

This summer we worked tirelessly. Taking Bravo to shows and clinics, always trying to ride without the bridle to help prepare him for the atmosphere of Congress and to help get him accustomed to not wearing a bridle in new places and new situations.

Bravo is one of the most talented Mustangs I have ever had the privilege of riding but he can mentally become overwhelmed very quickly. It’s been years of practice, pain management and emotional awareness training to get him to this point. Teaching him coping behaviors to help him handle new things, quick changes to the atmosphere and lots of people watching him.

This weekend Bravo represented the Mustang breed proudly. Time after time he entered the practice arenas bridless and always performed to the best of his physical and mental ability. He never was out of control and handled all the people and horses riding and walking around him like a pro.

I cannot say how proud I am of this mustang for overcoming so much.

Saturday night he felt really good in our pre-show warm up but I knew the atmosphere in the arena was going to be a lot and could be a little overwhelming to him. Still I felt it was possible to go bridless.

We got checked in to go in the warm up pen and as our time grew closer I began to have a feeling in my gut that maybe the bridle would be a good thing. In an electric atmosphere, maybe more guidance would be helpful....more security to help Bravo. So literally while waiting in the alleyway, I had Laurie Lindstrom put the bridle on....and I am so glad I did.

Bravo performed his heart out out there hitting his leads changes, his spins and his stops. All the required maneuvers. He didn’t spook at divots in the ground and he didn’t spook at the banners on the walls or judges in the chairs. When he nailed his right to left lead change, I just had to smile. It felt so effortless.

Bravo could have never done this any earlier in the year, even with the bridle on. He has matured so much this year both emotionally and mentally. He isn’t a baby anymore. He is a mature horse that knows his job.

Even though it was part of my dream to ride bridless, I got to do it for the practice so in a way I did get to accomplish my dream. There was no shame in putting the bridle on as that is what my horse needed and I knew it was the best choice for us to have a successful run.

Never second guess yourself for doing what is best for your horse and yourself. You won’t regret it.

My goal was to inspire people to fulfill their dreams and I feel I have done just that!

We placed 7th overall out of 10 pro riders with a score of 207.

I want to thank Laurie for helping me this summer and for being my driving partner, my groom, my friend, my training partner, and my friend. It would have been so much harder to do this without you!

I want to thank Luke Gingerich for guiding me and coaching me to a successful run. I would have never had the confidence to do this without your guidance and I also want to thank you for treating me as an equal even though I am another professional. That speaks volumes to your integrity as a person and a professional trainer. Thank you!

Thank you to Shellie Hochstetler and her husband Lloyd for coming down to watch, support and help. Your support and friendship mean the world to me and I always know I can call you when I am feeling overwhelmed or need suggestions.

And thank you to my mom for your support, prayers, guidance, love, sacrifice and help in getting me to where I am today. I love you so much!!

I am also so grateful that my 93 year old grandma was able to make the trip down the Ohio to be a part and watch. Grandma you have always been my biggest advocate and supporter and it meant the world to me that you were able to come. I love you!!

Thank you to so many others for helping and keeping everything going while I have been gone.

And I am so thankful to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for giving me this gift and this opportunity.

We now get prepared to head down to the ILHA Championships in a week and a half and then my season is done for the year. However I am already looking forward to next year and to the blessings, hardships and opportunities that will arise.

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