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Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Welcome 2018!

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Happy New Year! 

We are looking ahead to what lies before us in 2018 with a lot of excitement and hope you are, too! 

The Equicizer All-Purpose Pad

One of our favorite parts of 2017 was the announcement of our All-Purpose Riding Pad. Since we introduced the pad on May 1st, the feedback has been coming back positive and we even got an endorsement from horse trainer Steve Lantvit! We used the pads as part of a clinic at Lazy L Ranch with Steve as well.

The pad, which is priced at $195.00 USD, is a versatile and durable addition to any tack room. It can be used on the Equicizer and then moved over to real horses (just don't forget to remove the stirrups). The construction is designed to last (by Equicizer creator Frankie Lovato, Jr.) with a Herculon top that is mold and mildew resistant.


What are your New Year's Resolutions? We would love to hear. Tag us in your posts on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook! The Equicizer can be a great tool for achieving your fitness and/or riding goals in 2018. We hope to be a part of your journey.

Check out our "New Year, New You" blog from last year to find some inspiration for your resolutions and ways to incorporate your Equicizer.

By Amanda Elia

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Manna's Hana Veterans Program & the Equicizer

Over five years ago, Manna's Hana Riding Center was just a dream. Today, we are in our seventh year impacting the lives of children with special needs and their families. God has birthed this ministry and I am thankful that I said "yes" to His calling. The horses are amazing with the children and teach them to be patient and kind. 

An Equicizer was recently purchased by Manna's Hana Riding Center in Cookevillle, Tennessee - specifically for their Veterans program - and shortly after receiving it, we were thrilled to get the following feedback, first from their Executive Director and Instructor, Bobbie Abell who shared in detail about their Veterans Program and how their Equicizer will be used:

"In 2017, Manna’s Hana Riding Center expanded our services to include CAMP HANA Program for our Military Veterans and offered Free to our veterans participating in the program. A Grant from Middle Tennessee Natural Gas District of Sparta, Tennessee provided funding to run the program. We had three military veteran volunteers from Manna’s Hana Riding Center and a new veteran become a part of the program which ran for eight weeks. The veterans met at the riding center each week for an hour and a half, ending each meeting with a meal. On the seventh week they went on a trail ride and the bonding became stronger as they shared this experience and a meal afterwards. During this program, I witnessed healing in several of our veterans were sharing over the meals. One veteran wanted to keep coming and help with the horses. Feeling accepted and comfortable at the riding center was one of our goals with the program. Paul Abell, co-founder of Manna’s Hana assists him as they feed the horses each Saturday.

The Equicizer will be used next year to help the veterans experience how it feels to be on a horseas we work on balance, core muscle strength and stamina before they go on a trail ride. We are excited to see what next year brings."

Along with Bobbie's detailed explanation, we received the following testimonial from Paul Abell, co-founder of Manna's Hana and a big part of their program:

"As a veteran without PTSD or a physical injury, I was skeptical about joining the Camp HANA group. I decided to join to see if I could help other veterans. I was pleasantly surprised to find I could and make a difference.

The horses do all the work and make all the difference. It is the interaction of the horse and individual that makes progress possible. Our horses are therapeutic horses and are older, in their 20’s, and we have a weight limit set for them for riders of around 170 lbs. Most of the veterans, so far, have been too heavy to ride so we purchased the Equicizer to help. It allows our veterans to practice mounting and dismounting and actually feeling the simulated movement of a real horse. They get to ride without fear of injury or accident. The Equicizer has been a blessing to all our students, not just the Veterans."

We are excited that the Equicizer is now a part of Manna's Hana Riding Center and look forward to watching their Veterans Program continue to expand with the new addition of their Equicizer!

For more information on Manna's Hana Riding Center, Inc. you can check out their facebook page or visit their website.

by Kayla Jarvinen

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

The Equicizer visits Lazy L Ranch

Last week we joined Steve Lantvit Horsemanship at a clinic hosted by Lazy L Ranch. Located in North Lawrence, Ohio Lazy L is situated on a gorgeous piece of land that, "encompasses 400 acres and features a heated indoor arena, four heated barns totaling over 50 stalls, outdoor riding pads and miles of open and wooded trails." 

I think it's safe to say everyone - horses included - were a bit intrigued as we rolled "Mocha" and "Maggie" into the spacious indoor arena where lunch was taking place over an impressive spread. We were more than delighted at the warm reception we received as well as the informative, and highly entertaining, training session that ensued.

As noted on their website, Lazy L has, "...been privileged to build many fine teams of riders and horses throughout the years. We take special care and personal interest in assisting our riders with finding the best prospects available that match the abilities and needs of both the horse and the rider."

Lazy L offers a wide variety of services including but not limited to Reining, Cow / Cutting Horses, Barrel Horses, Cowboy Mounted Shooting, Pleasure / HUS, Trail / Riding Horses and Stud Prospects. They have their own transport service that spans across the United States.  

During our visit, Steve Lantvit offered training tips and tools as he worked with attendees aboard the Equicizer and we couldn't leave without a good jockey lesson by Frankie Lovato for anyone who was game enough to try. Below are a few more photos taken during our visit:  

To learn more about Lazy L Ranch and the services they offer, check out their facebook page and visit their website:

*Photos courtesy of Lazy L Ranch's facebook page.  
by Kayla Jarvinen

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Whispering Grace Horses

In August we had the pleasure of joining Steve Lantvit and his wife Jenn for an afternoon at a clinic they were doing at Whispering Grace Horses in Massillon, Ohio. We brought along a couple of Equicizers and while there, Frankie and the Equicizers joined Steve to shoot an upcoming episode of his RFD-TV show "Sure in the Saddle". That show airs tomorrow - Thursday, November 16th - at 3pm and 11pm EST!  

Whispering Grace Horses was founded by Bill and Marcia Shearer. We had the pleasure of touring their beautiful facility and meeting some of the many friendly faces that grace their program. Their goal as stated through their mission statement is to provide, "...HEALING (the rescue of HUMANS and HORSES) of the HEART while encouraging an atmosphere including HOPE through Christ-centered prayer and guidance in our community." You can learn more about them by visiting their website and tuning into tomorrow's episode of Sure in the Saddle!

Below are some behind the scenes photos from the filming:


by Kayla Jarvinen

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

My Rehab Journey with the Equicizer

A few months ago I was kicked in the knee by a horse and sustained a tibial plateau fracture. As someone who has been a lifelong distance runner and a participant in many different equestrian activities, from saddleseat equitation to polo, this was a devastating injury.  I’m also an equine veterinarian, so my job involves a lot of physical activity, and horses, horses, horses. 

Needless to say, I was crushed to be told that my injury would require six to eight weeks of non-weight-bearing with my leg immobilized in a brace. I learned about the Equicizer from a friend who had used one for rehabilitation from an injury. I was determined to get back to riding and running, and it seemed that an Equicizer could play a key role in my rehabilitation.  The Equicizer was the first workout I did when my surgeon told me my bone was healed and I could start the rehabilitation phase of my injury. Five months out, I’m back riding my “real” horses and starting to return to running, so I thought I would share my experience in the hope that it might help others.

First, the Equicizer is a FANTASTIC workout that can be adapted to many different levels of healing and rehabilitation. When I started rehab my knee didn’t bend at all and I hadn’t put any weight on it for six weeks. I started out riding bareback for 5 minutes twice per day and worked up to a single 20-minute ride. This was a great core workout that put no stress at all on my knee while allowing me to work at an intensity that gave me an aerobic workout as well. As I was able to bear weight on my leg I started doing some work with my feet in the stirrups and working into a half seat, and finally riding jockey-style. All of this gave me a sense for whether or not I could function properly on a live horse, and when I did feel ready the transition was seamless. I had great stability and core strength, and had confidence that my knee could handle the stress of a real ride. 

Currently I ride for 20 minutes almost every day, alternating five minutes of no-stirrups and 5 minutes jockey-style (and I sure do have a new appreciation for how hard those guys work!). I was able to find an old racing saddle, and that is what I use as it makes it easy to move from one style of riding to another without having to take the saddle on and off. One of the great things about the Equicizer is that you can get it going with your core muscles or your arms, so it is really a full-body workout. Keep in mind that I had a very serious injury, and that my overall level of activity was guided by my surgeon initially and then by my physical therapist, so be sure to work with your team if you are rehabilitating an injury. From my perspective, any athlete who wants an exceptional core workout should own an Equicizer, even if they have no desire to ever ride a real horse!
Second, the Equicizer can be used for many different stretching and bending exercises. I adapted some of my yoga routine that I could no longer do on the mat to my Equicizer. I am also able to practice bending and twisting in all of the ways required to return to playing polo.

Third, the Equicizer is truly a work of art. I had hard time deciding what I wanted my Equicizer to look like, and considered one of my favorite racehorses, my first horse that I had until the age of 32, or one of my “imaginary” horses I had as a child. I decided on my imaginary palomino with the face markings of my old horse. Frankie did an amazing job carving and painting the head, he is a very talented artist. I gave my Equicizer the name of Dandelion, as I’ve always thought they are a great metaphor for life: you can pull them out, drive over them with a lawnmower, and put weed-killers on them and they just keep popping back up and doing their thing. Kind of how you have to be when a horse kicks you in the knee, but you still have some things that you want to do in life.
Finally, I can’t say enough good things about Frankie, Kayla and the Wooden Horse Company.  If you’ve come to this page thinking that the Equicizer could fill a role in your life, you are probably right, go for it! If you have questions that are different than the ones I had and have tried to answer, just pick up the phone and have a chat with Frankie, they will be happy to talk to you.

by Margaret M. Brosnahan

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Grace Lake Ministries

This week we’re highlighting Grace Lake Ministries, a Therapeutic Riding Program based out of Anna, Texas that provides healing through their faith centered program. They purchased an Equicizer back in 2008 and we’re happy to be able to share the amazing work they are doing.

Founded in 2004 by Holly Robinson - an Advanced PATH Therapeutic Riding Instructor, Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning, and Social Worker – Grace Lake Ministries is run out of her family's barn on her parents 230 acre ranch. Holly says the inspiration behind the founding of Grace Lake Ministries was, “God inspired and supported extensively by my family.”

When asked who Grace Lake Ministries services she says simply, “Grace Lake serves anyone in need of hope and healing.” Their website notes that this includes children and adults, people with disabilities and people without disabilities, youth with obvious social problems, and youth without obvious social problems.

Their Equicizer “Rocko,” named by Holly’s husband, was purchased in 2008.

“We use our Equicizer for all initial evaluation and to teach specific skills that a rider is struggling with on the horse due to receiving too much sensory input from the horse. We also have riders that stretch out on Rocko before each ride,” Holly noted.

Not long ago Grace Lake created a video of their Equicizer "Rocko" so people can learn more about his role in their special program - Take a peek!

For more information on Grace Lake Ministries, follow their facebook page and visit their website

by Kayla Jarvinen