Join the ST Academy
The Mastery Class is a 12-month coaching program for horse lovers who want to optimize their skills, and actualize their horse's full potential in the ST Academy.
Registration for the 2019 class opens soon!
The Straightness Training Academy aims to form a worldwide professional group of loyal and dedicated horse trainers and instructors who commit themselves to the cause of improving health, joy, and beauty in working with horses based on the principles of Straightness Training (ST).
It all starts with joining the ST Mastery Program, which will help you fast-track your growth, achieve extraordinary results, and save you years of time-consuming trial and error.
The next step is the ST Evaluation Program, which is designed to evaluate and measure your level of skill and that of your horse. This approach enables you to progress at your own pace, to stay on track, and guide you further on your journey.
Riders who passed a certain set of evaluations in all 5 training pillars of ST - which are groundwork, longeing, work in hand, riding, and liberty - those riders can be invited to the international ST Instructor Program.
The Mastery Class - which is the 12-month coaching program - is designed to walk you STep-by-STep through the Mastery and Evaluation Program.
Whether you are just starting out, or want to take your advanced skills to new heights, the Mastery Class can help. The ST Academy and the Mastery Class provide crucial elements vital to your success!
The ST Academy starts with the Mastery Program which is broken down into 7 core training modules: two preparatory modules and one module for each of the five training pillars. Each module contains several lessons, and all course materials are available within our online ST Library.
Module 1 will help you create a solid base on which you always can rely on:
By the end of Module 1, you'll have a rock solid foundation and a clear action plan to take the training with your horse to new heights.
In this crucial Module, you'll master all the tools and aids we use in ST, and I will show you:
By the end of Module 2, you know exactly when, where, why, and how to use all different aids and tools.
In Module 3, we're going to put down a solid practical foundation with the use of a cavesson and a line. You'll also:
No matter what skill level, at the end of this Module, you'll have everything you need to get STarted in the riding arena!
In Module 4, I will teach you the fine details and 'magic' stuff when it comes to longeing.
This module teaches you:
By the end of this module, the invisible is visible, and the untouchable is touchable, so you know exactly how to get the job done.
Module 5 is all about doing all exercises with a bridle, with or without a bit, whatever you prefer. And we will take it a step further with the exercises:
After this Module, you know exactly what to do to strengthen your horse even more, so he can carry you properly.
Module 6 is about the art of riding. It gives you the full insights into the why, what, and how of all riding exercises:
Through clear videos and comprehensive manuals, you are able to study everything in detail so that you are well prepared to start riding.
ST at Liberty is the magical ingredient that will help you:
In this connection, you will find the horse focused, interested, and strongly motivated in learning and doing all ST exercises. And then you will experience that all other four training pillars will work better for you as well!
With a proper preparation and regular practice in all five training pillars, your horse will start to look great and feel amazing!
The Mastery Program would not be as much fun without the Evaluation Program! It's the icing on the cake! This is where you can provide a video for review and receive feedback as to where you are in the development of you and your horse in the Mastery program. The Evaluation Program is an invaluable tool for people without easy access to instruction. You can both learn from other students lessons as well from your lessons.
In the ST Evaluation Program, you can learn from watching how other students are improving on the program. You can view 2250+ online video lessons (Touchstones) with fellow Mastery Students.
For example, you can watch a groundwork lesson with a student in Finland, a longeing lesson with a student in South Africa, with a young horse, an older one, a mare, gelding, stallion, a warmblood, thoroughbred, gaited horse, and so on. This program contains an exclusive collection of lessons and an invaluable knowledge base. It is of great importance to fast track your growth and an invaluable support in your ST journey!
In the ST Evaluation Program you receive online lessons yourself. When you submit videos of a Touchstone, it will be evaluated by my team of ST Evaluators.
Think of it as a private lesson guiding you towards the progression through the Mastery Program, providing feedback that is very detailed and accompanied by suggestions for improvement.
Through an evaluation form, you'll receive valuable tips, advice, and feedback on what you do well and how to tweak your work with the important 2mm.
This way, you can create the best possible training habits and skills!
For each Touchstone you pass you'll get a Touchstone certificate. When you pass all 5 Touchstones within a certain grade, you'll receive a Grade certificate.
The Mastery Class is a unique educational environment in which you'll get step-by-step coaching, personal feedback, and 24/7 support to get to the next levels of you and your horse's abilities.
When you have an important question or want a fresh perspective on a challenge you encounter, then I got your back in the Mastermind Sessions!
You and I will meet live in a video conference, and instantly you receive help from me, I'll give you ideas and suggestions on how to deal with your specific issues, and how to solve them. I'll tackle your toughest questions and provide guidance to move you forward. If you can't make it live, you can catch up with the recordings.
With the Email Coaching, you know exactly where to start, what to do next, and where to go when you encounter challenges along the way!
To not get overwhelmed by all programs, modules, lessons, and assignments in the Mastery 2018 Class, I will be sending you personal emails, so you know exactly what the next STep is you need to take. There are no deadlines, so you can take each step at your own pace, at a moment that suits you and your horse best.
In this course, you'll discover the general spectrum of strategies and techniques on how to train horses.
This course is perfect for beginner horse trainers because we'll start from scratch. You'll learn the basics of how to communicate and interact with your horse, how to teach your horse completely new things, and how to motivate and inspire him. For sure advanced riders will discover some interesting 2 mm in this course that they forgot about, or that they see now in a completely new light. Often huge results come from small changes and refining little details.
In this Module, you'll get access to recordings of parts of the Mastery clinics that I gave in the Netherlands, the UK, Sweden, the USA, South Africa, and Brazil.
These recordings are super packed with demos, case studies, theory sessions, and practical lessons with amazing people and horses. This way you can get even more ideas and inspiration to fine-tune your own work.
As a Mastery Student, you'll get the opportunity to use the official and exclusive Mastery Student Logo.
You can use this logo to express that you started your ST Journey and that you're on your personal path to Mastery. Feel free to put it on your website and social media.
Besides these five special bonuses, you'll get all the support you need:
As soon as you join the Mastery 2018 Class, you'll have guidance and support from a team of like-minded horse lovers in a safe and encouraging environment. In the ST Academy, you'll never feel lost or left behind:
In our Mastery FB group, Members FB group and Evaluation FB group you can share ideas, vids, and pics, and connect with fellow students!
Within minutes or hours, you'll have a response on your post in one of our member groups from fellow students, ST Instructors, ST Evaluators, or Crew ST!
All core modules have special FAQ sections, plus you'll have access to an extensive Support Module with dozens of answers to frequently asked questions!
If you have technical issues or a challenge you need help with, simply write to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll get you sorted asap!
The ST Academy is based online so you can participate from home!
And if you have put wifi out at your barn, you can even listen to mastermind sessions from there!
You have lifetime access to the programs, modules, and lessons, so you can go through the materials whenever you want, learn at your own pace, and work on your own schedule.
The ST Academy will work GREAT for any kind of rider and any kind of horse, and I believe it can help you and your horse too! However, as with any horse training program, your results using the ST Academy may vary from these testimonials.
Even though the ST Academy has been wonderfully designed to help you master the Straightness Training principles in a structured way as easily as possible, it's not a 'quick fix', there are no guaranteed results, and it still requires time, dedication, and persistent effort on your part.
But if you’re seriously interested in helping your horse and willing to take some action and put some effort in, then the ST Academy provides you a great toolbox to achieve your desired results, and the following Mastery Students agree:
The path to mastery is through constant and never-ending repetition. Which is why for as long as the program is in existence, you can revisit the program and its ST library, year after year, at no additional charge.
There is a reason we're successful in the horse training world: our strategies work across an enormous range of breeds, with riders across 50+ countries and from a variety of disciplines at virtually every stage of their journey.
Our Customer Happiness Team is exceptional. If you need help or have questions, whatever you wish, we're here to help. You'll always be taken care of with understanding, honesty, and respect.
In the ST Academy, you won't be on your own. Dedicated ST Instructors and ST Evaluators will answer your questions, challenge you to stretch further, and inspire you to stay in action and to persevere.
Everybody who is familiar with the ST Community will acknowledge that the atmosphere is always positive and constructive. We have a really, friendly, helpful, supportive group of people.
We've always backed the ST Academy with a 100% risk-free guarantee. This guarantee is our way of making safe that you won’t be disappointed, and that there is no risk involved on your side.
When you invest in your success through the ST Academy, you're not only helping your own horse, but you're also helping other horses in need.
We believe that animals need to be treated with respect, love, and care. Especially the over 100 million working horses, donkeys, and mules who provide invaluable support to daily life of an estimated 600 million people in some of the poorest places in the world through transportation and production. Healthy working horses, donkeys and mules help to put food on their tables send their children to school and build better futures for themselves and their families.
Our goal is not only to help you make a positive change for your horse but also to make a positive difference for horses, donkeys, and mules in need. That's why a portion of profits from our company go directly to non-profit organizations that support horses, donkeys, and mules in need.
Yes, the Mastery 2018 Class is a coaching program for horse lovers of all levels!
We've had students come into the program with no experience, ending up with several Touchstone and Grade certificates in the ST Evaluation Program. To be clear, developing your horse is not a 12-month, linear event. Our most successful total beginners have taken anywhere from several months (rare) to several years to optimize their skills and actualize their horse's potential.
While we can't guarantee that outcome for you, what we can say is this:
The ST Academy is ideal if you're just starting out because it will train you to think like a horseman and avoid many of the mistakes we make when we start training a horse. Plus, included in your tuition is a bonus especially for total beginners, called Horse Training 101. It tackles some of the biggest, toughest obstacles you may be facing such as:
Horse Training 101 walks you through exactly what you need to understand, know - and most importantly - do in order to train in the right way.
Plus, if you know you're certain that you're meant to be one of the good horse trainers, there's no better environment to put yourself in than the ST Academy.
So there will be riders who have lots of problems with their horse all the way up to riders and instructors with highly trained horses in the Mastery Program.
And we spent a lot of time working on this coaching program so that it works for all of you, whether you are a beginner or an advanced rider.
If you are an advanced rider, professional horse trainer, or riding instructor, this program will help you to fast-track your growth and achieve extraordinary results!
I will personally advise what you need to adjust,
Because the devil is in the detail!
Especially, if you are experiencing a 'plateau' for some time, you need to adjust with 2mm at a time.
By changing your approach with 2mm at a time you'll reach the goals you’re after.
But we will start at the beginning, because I believe that repetition is the mother of all skill.
And even though you are starting at the beginning, you are not repeating what you already know!
You are widening, deepening and broadening your knowledge, understanding, and experience in ST with the important 2mm!
And this is very important if you want to become an ST instructor.
The mission of this program is to develop:
And we'd love to have you join us!
You have lifetime access to the ST library and its modules and during the first year - but also in the future years - you can train at your own tempo, setting your own goal, suitable with your ambition and your situation.
You can access the materials at your convenience. The core training consists of pre-recorded videos, manuals, transcripts, resources, and worksheets and you can access the materials - which are presented in a wonderful, easy to use and user-friendly portal - anytime you want.
The reason for life-long access is because there are limits to what you and your horse can achieve in a year. You can't expect that you can teach a young horse the piaffe/passage/pirouette/change/levade in 12 months, that's a process of YEARS! That's why can go your own pace and do what's best for you and your horse.
But while taking this program, there's a big chance you will advance much quicker than you ever could on your own.
If you plan to follow the email coaching in real time, we recommend between 4-6 hours per week to read the steps, watch the training, complete your growth assignments, and -if you'd like - engage with other Mastery students and ST Instructors in the ST community.
If you're not able to care out that much time at first, don't worry. You get lifetime access to the training and can easily work at your own pace, on your own schedule. Most of our students have full-time jobs or businesses and families. This experience is designed to stretch you, but it can also be customized to your life.
The more focus and dedication you put into the ST Academy, the more you'll get out of it. But many of our students go through the program as best they can; pause and return to it as their schedule allows.
Developing a horse is not a 12-month linear event.
This program mirrors the reality of horsemanship and creating a masterpiece - it's intense, time-consuming, demanding, and something you'll work for the rest of your life.
So it's important to realize that the program consists of two elements:
Live long access to the ST Library with its modules, videos, manuals, and assignments
The Mastery Class with 12-month intensive coaching through 5 video lessons, 6 mastermind sessions, and the 101 Step Email Coaching which walks you step-by-step through the materials of the Mastery and Evaluation Program.
The main reason you get 12-month intensive coaching on top of the lifetime access is the following:
Having purchased the Mastery Program is a good thing, and reading and watching the materials is wonderful too, but actually DOING something with it is what matters most to me!
And when you start ‘doing’ you might experience challenges in the beginning.
That’s why you and I will meet live in a video conference, which is called a 'Mastermind session', and you can ask me all the questions you have about your personal situation:
Besides this, doing the video lessons in the ST Evaluation Program – the free touchstones - is essential and indispensable, so you get to know what you do well and what you need to improve.
After this year of coaching, you know where to start, what to do next and where to go in case of a challenge.
In case your horse is too young at the moment, or in a phase of rehabilitation, or if you expect family expension, don't worry, all of the training will be inside the ST Library and student portal waiting for you upon your return.
Just collect all emails from the 101-Step Email Coaching, and go through the individual steps at your own pace and at the moment that suits you best.
Our live "Mastermind Sessions" are recorded, and important news and questions will be added to the ST Library so you can catch up on those at your convenience too.
Only your five free Touchstones are valid for only 12 months, but if you write our support team in the very first week of starting the class and tell them that you're not able to use your Touchstones in the first 12 months, they will give you a 12-month extension of this period.
This way you will not miss out on the training.
The main difference between the two educational programs is:
The Entry Course is an 'appetizer', but if you want to optimize your knowledge, master your skills, and actualize your horse's full potential in all five training pillars, the ST Mastery Class is the place to be.
Although the Entry Course is a small extract of the Full Program, we don't offer the full Mastery Program in separate modules.
The reason is that every training pillar - groundwork, longeing, work in hand, riding and liberty - will add a different dimension to an exercise, so the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
And if you liked the Entry course, you'll LOVE the Mastery program!
Plus, to make it even more easy for you to choose:
With the ST Academy, we aim to form a group of loyal and dedicated instructors in different disciplines to the cause of improving health, joy, and beauty in working with horses based on the principals of Straightness Training.
And to qualify for the admission to the International ST Instructor Program, you have to start with the ST Mastery Program and ST Evaluation Program.
When you have passed a certain set of evaluations in the Training Pillars groundwork, longeing, work in hand, riding, and liberty, you can be invited by Marijke de Jong personally to enroll in the international ST Instructor Program.
So if you'd like to become an ST Instructor, the first step is joining the Mastery 2018 Class.
The Mastery Program and Evaluation Program exist on their own, so they are also perfectly suitable for you if you are completely happy to work on your own progress and that of your own horse.
So if you're not interested in teaching, you don't have to teach!
If you have no aspirations in that direction, you are very welcome to school yourself into a horse trainer expert with the help of the Mastery Program and the Evaluation program.
So no matter your dreams and aspirations, you're very welcome to the Mastery 2018 Class!
We're proud to have graduates in 58 countries on all continents, from many equestrian disciplines, from all levels, and across 100+ horse breeds. And one of the key principles is: ST is for the horse, the horse is not for ST! ST is beneficial to all kinds of horses - no matter what breed! From Thoroughbreds, warmbloods, coldbloods, draught horses, sports horses, Selle Français, Frisians, Andalusians, Quarters, Icelandics, Norwegians, Lippizaners, Shetties, Arabs, Haflingers, Gypsy cobs, Welsh cobs, Paints, Appaloosas, Knabstruppers Morgans, Mustangs, Lusitanos, Foxtrotters, Saddlebreds, Boereperden, Frederiksborgers, Akhal-Tekes, Shires, Percherons, Freibergers, Highlands, Mangalarga Marchadors, Criollos, Pasu Peruano, New Forests, Connemaras, and many other breeds and mixed breeds. Because every horse is asymmetrical by nature - in body and limbs - so we need to rebalance and him so that he can carry us in a healthy way - no matter what breed. Your horse will be very grateful to have you as his Straightness Trainer!
Every flavor or rider is on board, from newbie to ambitious leisure rider, from professional horse trainers to instructors, and riders from all kinds of equestrian disciplines such as dressage, classical riding, natural horsemanship, trail riding, western, show jumping, eventing, and trick training. And ST is really a wonderful ‘add-on’ method because it helps to rebalance your horse, no matter what breed or discipline. With ST you can create the best possible physique for your horse, so he can do the job the best he can, so you can perform at your best in your own discipline!
What if you consulted the vet, the dentist, the farrier, different kinds of instructors and it’s still not easy to ride your horse? Well, if you have tried everything to solve your problems - such as rearing, bucking or spooky or stubborn behaviour - and got told that ‘’it must be a problem between your horse’s ears’’, then try Straightness Training! So yes, you are welcome to join the Mastery Class with your 'problem horse', so we can guide you to help your horse the best you can.
Straightness training is about 'think first, act later' so it's not a problem that you don't have your own horse yet. And perhaps you can ask the riding school to let you work with the same horse for a while. Some riding schools are really forthcoming to ST and let you practice in groundwork in your own time when it's not busy at the riding school. So perhaps there are opportunities at your riding school as well. Just ask, and you will find out.
What if you don't have your own horse, and the owner of the horse is not doing ST, will the program work? Absolutely! Improvements in the horse are often quickly seen AND felt, so every little bit of Straightness Training you do will be a big step in the right direction. Straightness Training will not only allow you to 'be the change you want to see' but also inspire the co-owner as the horse will start to move in a more balanced way and is becoming easier to ride.
And what if you would like to keep it that way, is that a problem? Not at all! In ST, we always start bitless to spare the mouth and to preserve the sensitivity of the mouth. Because in the beginning, most horses are a kind of stiff in the body, because of the natural asymmetry. Therefore, a bit is only introduced later on in the horse's education - but ONLY if a rider would like to. So of course, a bit isn't mandatory and if you wish to carry on bitless that is fine.
What if it's too hot in your country for the upcoming 12 months? What if winter is coming, with rainy, snowy, icy, chilly days? Now it depends a bit on which side of the equator you live if you're heading towards spring/summer or autumn/winter. Plus, we have people from over 50 countries in our program, and it depends on their religion and culture if they are heading towards a holiday season or not. So to serve all people, from all countries, we offer an intensive coaching period which covers 12 months, which means: all four seasons. This way everybody experiences the same balance of good/bad weather, holiday/working season, and other environmental circumstances.
Plus, we offer an easy-payment-plan of 12 monthly payments, so that the payments are spread throughout a whole year.
We have students from all over the world, and some of them work in fancy indoor riding arenas while others practice in the pasture. And both end up with great results! If you want, you can always mark a certain area in your field with some cones or some moveable poles.
We range from total beginner riders to professionals, and we have well-educated horses and horses who bring along a lot of challenges. And this rich diversity of horses and authentic riders in the ST Academy are one of our distinct advantages. No matter our age, no matter what equestrian discipline, no matter what level, we all must understand how to counteract the natural asymmetry effectively, how to rebalance our horse, and how to create a loving relationship and respectful working partnership with our horse. Regardless of our horse, the nature of every horse is that we need to know how to bond, how to build trust, how to educate a horse, how to create understanding and motivation, how to stretch his comfort zone, how to deal with challenges that we ALL face, no one excluded, and how to turn things around and make a positive change for our horse. So if you train horses, the ST Academy can help.
Since we have customers in over 50 different countries, unfortunately, it is impossible to serve all these countries with educational materials in their own language. But the good thing is, that I'm not a native speaker myself when it comes to English. Therefore, I use only simple words, short sentences and I speak slowly. So also for students from for example Italy, Spain, France, Brazil, Russia or whatever non-native-English speaking country you live in, the program is easy to follow. And people laugh about my 'Dunglish' expressions (Dutch + English). And we always enjoy the Swenglish, Danglish, and Genglish way of writing of our Swedish, Danish and German students. We can understand each other perfectly and feel the message and good intentions no matter what. We are not limited by perfection! So if you speak a little Franglais, Spanglish, Russlish, or another exotic English variant, you're very welcome to join the club!
I am absolutely certain you are going to love the Mastery 2018 Class, and I am absolutely certain it is going to help you!
So how are you going to know until you try? That’s why you should come on board today. And since I am so confident that you'll benefit from taking the Class, I will give you a 100% money back guarantee.
This guarantee is my way of making safe that you won’t be disappointed, and that there is no risk involved on your side!
Here are some Academy STatistics that you might find interesting: