Horsemanship & Training

Horsemanship & Training

In the world of horses there are many areas to explore, many disciplines to exercise and many ideas to learn. 

We believe horsemanship is like the path of life.… The path to horsemanship isn’t just one way, there are many ways you can go down, and they all lead somewhere a little different but are all based on the love for horses. 

At MBHT an important and large part of our business is training and working with horses, we make a plan each year to spend time training horses and also ourselves. 

The MBHT team have come from varied backgrounds in horses from show jumping, pony club, trekking, dressage, western riding, hunting, self taught etc so we all have different skills and ideas to contribute, the key here is adding all this experience to the business and applying it where needed, learning from each other and building on our knowledge, as well as having some fun together and building a fantastic supportive team environment.

We have been incredibly lucky to work with some pretty amazing trainers from all over the world allowing us to add to our ever growing skill sets and shape our philosophy, from working with wild horses and bringing a few home to rehabilitate and train to re training problem horses and keeping our trekking horses in tip top shape for the job. It’s a busy life with never one day the same as the next. 

Over the years our approach to horsemanship has changed and developed and we find ourselves at a point where we often say“less is more” We wouldn’t go as far as saying we are natural horsemanship people as this term generally leads to very specific training methods but instead we say we are learning and practising better horsemanship. Ensuring we start at the beginning as in the very beginning…. on the ground.

Building trust, connections and confidence through varied exercises all based on soft pressure and lots of release. We know horses learn from the release and finding the calm safe zone, they actively look for this space and when they look for it and find it we release and this is the reward, all our training exercises are based on this method and teaching our horses safe boundaries. 

By letting our horses display characteristics of their natural behaviours as if they lived like they do in the wild, such as living in herds together and having large areas to graze, play, roam and rest really helps with the horses’ communication amongst the herd as well as in a work environment. We find our horses’ mental state to be alot happier also, they have the chance to interact with other horses, graze and stretch their legs or rest and lie down and sleep. 

The balance the horses have in their lives in terms of work, play rest and training is really important and that’s why we have enough horses to rotate them regularly in the treks so they all get days off, our horses only work 2-4 days each out of a whole 7 days meaning they all get at least 3 days off each week.

Horses are instinctual creatures and while many of our horses are born into domesticated life we believe they still harvest behaviors driven by instinct, the more we understand these instinct and the way a horse’s brain works the more we can be beneficial to our horses when training them and communicating with them in a language they can understand. 

Understanding energys, use of energy and reading expressions can give us a huge amount of insight to how a horse is feeling and what they are trying to say, the more we practice the more we can use these skills during our training process. 

We would like to thank the following for inspiring us to keep learning and following our horse dreams….

Ray Hunt

Warwick Schiller

Russell Higgins 

Terera Trull 

Tui Teka 

Mark Todd

Buck Brenanman 

Horse Health

Horse Health

Here at MBHT we strive to exceed the needs of our horses’ health ensuring each horse is cared for on an individual needs basis, some horses require extra feed, some extra cuddles, and some need a bit more training and time to make sure they are happy, confident and safe for our customers. 

Horses are an expensive business that’s for sure! With many costs and lots of time involved to ensure the best practices in horse care are available to our herd should they need them at any time, we are committed to our horses and their needs, they are very important members of our family, even if this means we need to sleep with them in the stables to ensure they are ok during the dreaded guy fawkes celebrations ….. And this actually happens but it’s ok we rather like living our own little saddle club nights!

We believe that a happy healthy horse at work is a safe horse for our customers, here’s a few ways we keep on top of our beasties and their health. 

Personal Fitted Gear

That’s right each of our horses has their own saddle and gear fitted to them and we check these regularly with our saddle fitter from horselands, they also stock lots of horsey gear, have a look @ www.horselands.co.nz

The horses can change shape throughout the seasons or when we feed them too much haylage! Like we said Horses are expensive!

Dentistry 

Our horses are all on a maintenance schedule with our horse dentist and receive regular checks and treatments, this ensures they are comfortable with a bit in their mouth if they need one (a lot of our horses wear bitless bridles) and are chewing and digesting their food well. It also means they have a beautiful smile and nice smelling breath too! 

Vet Treatments and Health Checks 

MBHT has a long standing relationship with our local Vets North Team, and they provide us with all the horse health care we need, anything from scanning pregnant mares, checking on our foals, treating abscesses during winter and checking our horses are always in tip top shape. Check them out @ www.vetsnorth.co.nz

Physio & Bodywork 

Just like people, the horses can get tight from time to time so we have some awesome tools like a massage gun that we use to make sure we keep their muscles soft, strong and supple, coupled with carrot stretches, flatwork, groundwork and other body work. 

We also work closely with Kath Long from Equine Physio NZ, she treats all our horses when needed with Physio, Massage, Osteo and Acupuncture. Check her out @ www.equinephysionz.com

Hoof Care 

Barefoot trimming is our way here at MBHT, our horses’ feet are examined and trimmed specifically to their needs by our wonderful and experienced trimmer Sarah, she’s even been kind enough to teach a few of our team members how to trim, under her supervision of course. 

Grooming and Maintenance 

All our grooming and maintenance is all looked after by our team of guides/Instructors, we have schedules in place for each horse so we can make sure we don’t forget anything, 

This includes anything from doing summer clips and plaiting manes through to administering medications or treatments, regular daily feeding for our horses that need a bit of extra protein or just giving the horses some one on one love. 

Diet and Horse Supplies 

They say that beauty starts within right? Same thing for our horses, our horses are feed on a mostly grass and haylage diet that is managed by our farmhands, it’s a pretty busy business growing grass and cutting haylage, the team needs to make sure the paddocks are grazed well, fertilized, cut a at the right time and stored well for winter. 

On top of all this the MBHT horses are given extra special hardfeeds to make sure they all get the nutrients, vitamins, minerals they need to have full happy bellies, keep nice weight on and maintain the strength of their muscles. Our team here spends lots of time making sure each horse’s dietary requirements are tended to and changed as needed. 

Mental Health 

The mental health of our horses is just as important to us as our own mental health. Horses are incredibly expressive and as long as we find ways to understand their silent language we can figure out what they need.

Sometimes our horses just need a mini break just like you and me, so you guessed it they all get time off throughout the year. 

It might be that a few during spring time are feeling energetic and so we head off to the woodhill forest for some fun, fast , different trails and scenery. We have a couple keen jumpers too so off we head for some jumping, hunting. 

MBHT also believes in providing our horses with non riding fun too and we spend time with our herd in the round pen practicing and playing with liberty and ground work exercises. 

Like humans, horses can become stale and bored and even depressed if tasks with the same routine day in day out  so it’s important that we provide ample opportunities for them to have different activities and outings as well as downtime and not to mention lots and lots of affection and cuddles. 

Our History

Our History

Muriwai Beach Horse Treks has been in operation since 2013 and quickly became one of Auckland’s most popular spots to ride horses. 

Muriwai Beach Horse Treks has been rated  by The New Zealand Herald as one of the Top Five best horse treks. We have treks to suit all abilities from beginners to experienced people, with horses and ponies to match each rider’s level.

We cater for many group sizes from small intimate ones to large corporate functions, team building etc. We provide NZ Safety approved helmets and high visibility vests for all riders.

All riders receive an instructional and safety brief on how to ride a horse at the beginning of the ride to make everyone feel safe, comfortable and relaxed during the ride.

We trek along the picturesque black sands of Muriwai Beach on New Zealand’s West coast and up through the enchanting forestry of Woodhill. In off-peak times we are located less than 40 minutes northwest of the Auckland CBD and just a short 15 minutes from the end of the North Western motorway. 

Here at Muriwai Beach horse treks, as Auckland horse riding specialists we also offer lessons for beginner riders through to the more advanced riders on one of our star MBHT horses. 

Bookings are essential and we provide both tourists and locals the best West Auckland horse rides. All our guides are mature, experienced and extremely capable in providing all customers with the best experience possible.

British website, Travel Essentials, one of the UK’s leading independent online travel essentials providers championed Muriwai Beach Horse Treks in their article on the Top 10 Happiest Cities in The World. When describing ‘what to do’ in the City of Sails they recommended discovering New Zealand’s scenic beauty by experiencing a trek with us. They described the horse adventure as“such a great way to experience the rugged West Coast”.

Horseback riding is certainly the best way to experience the exquisite and pristine beach that this part of New Zealand has to offer – and it’s loads of fun.

We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Our Passion

Our Passions

People have sought out relationships with horses since the beginning of time. Like people, horses are social beings whose herd dynamics are remarkably similar to the family system. 

Here at MBHT we aim to bring the world of horses and people together in many ways, 

“We are so much more than just a horse trekking facility” 

We aim to provide many opportunities in our business, from trekking, trail riding, lessons, horsemanship, equine therapy, groundwork, school holiday programmes and even some filming and photography. 

These special animals allow people to bring all kinds of issues into the horse’s world and accept them as they are – imperfections and all.” In a safe environment, clients learn to face their fears. They build confidence in their ability to overcome challenges. Some people feel intimidated and nervous at first. Later they discover how quickly they process those feelings and find comfort in their relationship with the horse. Empowered by the experience, people may develop the confidence to address other fears. 

Our MBHT team displays just as much passion towards our horses as they do our clients, horse health is incredibly important to us, mental and physical. Check out