Kerry Kuhn is one of those extraordinary horsemen who blends with the horse, as though there is no separation between them. He seems to intuitively know the horse’s mind, behavior, way of moving.
Sharing his knowledge with people of all skill levels is something Kerry’s passionate about. He has a keen sense of humor, which makes learning from him all that much easier. He even smiles when the horse tries to exert a different opinion. Kerry’s teachings are not complex nor contrived. His philosophy is, “Let’s figure it out on the ground, get the horse and rider comfortable and trusting in the saddle, then let’s open the gate and go somewhere.”
At the age of 12, Kerry started his first two-year-old colt with the help of his grandfather, nationally-acclaimed horseman Dale Lukens. That colt-starting experience spurred Kerry to learn about communicating with horses in an effective and kind manner. “I learned to work with the horse instead of against him,” reflects Kerry. He also paid his dues by competing in rodeos and training young Thoroughbreds on the track.
Those experiences led Kerry to think about how to better communicate with horses and how to share that message. Over the years Kerry has created a program to help riders connect in a safe and enjoyable manner with their horses. “I want to instill confidence and skills in both the horse and the rider,” states Kerry, “so that they can enjoy exploring the next bend in the trail together.
“There’s much more to a horse than what you can see,” continues Kerry. “There’s a lot going on in horses’ minds as they search for good, safe leadership. Every horse is unique, and we need to tailor our approach for every horse.”
Kerry’s accolades include winning multiple colt-starting competitions and headlining at Equine Affaire (Ohio and Massachusetts), Western States Horse Expo Pomona, Equifest of Kansas, American Royal, Missouri Equine Expo, and the Mane Event in Canada.
In addition to being a National Ambassador for Purina Mills’ Equine Influential Team for years, Kerry has been a judge for Project Cowboy and the Extreme Cowboy Race World Finals. He also served as the official clinician on television’s “Best of America by Horseback.”
Not one to spend idle time just whittling, Kerry designed the “Kerry Kuhn Training Halter,” a quintessential rope halter, hackamore and side-pull all-in-one piece of equipment that now bears the stamp of ‘patent pending.’ “I never in a thousand years thought I’d be applying for a patent,” smiles Kerry. “But apparently even cowboys can be inventors.”
Kerry’s knowledge and wisdom play a unique role in the horse world. “I’ve found that as we improve our horsemanship, it radiates out to our everyday lives. Horsemanship is all about good leadership, patience and learning to be positive, no matter what the situation is. It’s a skill we should live every day. I really look forward to helping people understand that philosophy, and how to apply it to themselves and their horses.”