A lifelong rider, Warwick Schiller moved from his home country of Australia to the United States to pursue his dream of training horses.
He focused on reining, his passion, eventually going on to become an NRHA (National Reining Horse Association) Reserve World Champion and also representing Australia in reining at the 2010 Alltech World Equestrian Games. He is also a successful coach of NRHA World Champions, NRHA Rookie of the Year, Australian Champions, US Champions and a fellow WEG team member.
Somewhere along the way of learning to train reining horses, Warwick came to understand the underlying principles of training; a way of understanding horses that crossed all boundaries of breed or discipline. These principles involve being empathetic to the nature of horses. With these principles, you are interacting with them in a way that they already understand.
When Warwick finally understood the Principles of Training he couldn’t believe how simple it was to solve any horse problem and train supple, safe and talented horses. No more gadgets or gimmicks or making them do anything. When he understood the principles, the horses wanted to do what he asked. Identifying these principles and being able to explain them in a way that anyone can understand is something that very few horseman can do. Warwick’s unique gift lies in his ability to explain the how, why and when of what he does with the horses. His mission is to teach horse people all over the world these principles so they can see for themselves how simple it really is to train their own horse.
His online video library sets out in very clear detail, a step by step process that follows the principles of training. It can be followed by any horse owner, with any horse. It is broken down into small pieces that is easy and achievable for anyone.
Warwick’s wife Robyn and son Tyler are also integral to the WSPH team. Robyn takes care of the business end of things while Tyler, when not at university, can often be found on the other side of the camera filming clips for Warwick.
When Warwick isn’t on the road conducting his popular horsemanship clinics around the world, or attending horse expos teaching others, you can find him in front of the camera making his latest Youtube or Subscription Library video.
What, wait, why?
Because it’s about progression, and transition, and ultimately, life.
Sometimes the training of horses can rightfully be defined as a simple progression of techniques employed to create a desired result. (Think, “If I allow my horse to make a mistake and then make the mistake a little uncomfortable, the horse will seek out a new, eventually correct, answer to that stimulus.”) But it would be naive of us if we thought that was all that it is to it. There is no step-by-step process that will make EVERY horse respond in the same way while feeling good about it. Sure, there are strategies we can employ to better communicate, ensure responsiveness and evoke trust in the horses we train. But there is also intuition, keen observation, a mighty heaping of positive/negative energy and much more that also affect the outcome. It is up to us, as ever-evolving horse-people to understand that. Warwick embraces that knowingly.
Warwick has always loved learning, teaching, people and horses. It was a natural step for him to share what he learned in the most available way possible. So, he started his online training library and set the course for many, many clinics around the world. As a native Australian his love of storytelling combined with the thousands of hours spent among the best horse trainers, a wide variety of horses and horse owners/trainers has helped him build a well-earned reputation for being among the top professional horsemen himself.
The logo that I first created for Warwick (seen above) was designed to be a badge of who he was (a western horse trainer) and where he had come from (that strange little squiggle you have seen in the middle of his logo is the aboriginal symbol for journey) – both things very important to Warwick as he was, beyond any doubt, authentic BEFORE authentic became a cool catch word to be.
And so, several months ago when Warwick and Robyn approached me to create a new logo for them, my reaction was “What? Wait, why.” Warwick loves that logo and it seems so, well, right for him.
My story here is getting long, but for those of you who have spent time with Warwick you would know that long stories are sometimes the most important. I’ve explained the “what”, and so now I get to the “why”.
Warwick is learning. He is learning and growing and becoming the very best horseman he can be. And he is inviting the people that believe in what he is doing along for that ride. “It’s not just about training Victoria, it’s about the journey and WHO is with you on that journey.” Who can argue that point when you actually stop to think about it?
Robyn and Warwick asked that I create a new symbol for the next phase of what Warwick’s work is to be become. (I say, “his WORK” because he is quick to point out that this is not “about him.”) It’s life-long, and passion-driven work. It involves horses and horse-people and community and support… POSITIVE support. A tribe if you will, but one that is focused and has goals and is open to making mistakes and learning from those mistakes together, to become better, for their horses, for their goals and for each other.
To visually represent that change, the Journey logo was created. Two aboriginal symbols for journey intertwined as horse and horse-person would be, with the hand of mankind making its mark on the amazing spirit and action of the horse. But not complicated… simple, clean, pure.
Please welcome Warwick into his next phase. And join him. Oh, don’t worry, I don’t ever foresee him letting go of the perfectionism in training that he aspires to. The videos to come will be more diverse and interesting as he goes. They will always help you get your horse on that trailer/float and to solve any problems or obstacles you need to overcome. Because for him, it’s about the horse AND rider, and that is why, for his new logo, you are there. Right next to your horses, with your hand guiding them and Warwick’s experience helping you.