There’s no way around it. Kathleen Lindley Beckham was a horse-crazy child. Born in Naples, Italy into an American military family, she spent her early childhood on two-year tours of Naples, Italy, Newport, Rhode Island and Midway Island in the Pacific Ocean. When Kathleen was nine years old, her father retired from the U.S. Navy and the family settled in southeastern Wisconsin. This allowed Kathleen to FINALLY start her long-begged-for riding lessons.
By the age of 16, Kathleen was showing in the Childrens Hunter division at A-rated Hunter-Jumper horse shows, while working as a groom at the barn on weekends, teaching lessons and summer camps and braiding horses at shows to defray the costs of showing. Upon her graduation from high school, she became a full-time professional hunter-jumper trainer.
That career as a hunter/jumper trainer was derailed in 1994 when Kathleen suffered a stroke at the age of 28. This event changed the direction of her life’s work. Through her newfound physical weakness, she found she would need to learn ways to "work smarter" rather than "work harder" with horses. This realization became the first step toward her study of horsemanship, not just riding horses. It is a study and a devotion that has wholly consumed the past 20+ years of her life.
Kathleen has studied with many great horsemen, including Leslie Desmond, Peter Campbell, Kim Walnes, Lee Smith, Buster McLaury, Martin Black and Tom Curtin. She has studied equine anatomy and biomechanics with Dr. Deb Bennett and has studied lameness and equine physical issues with many veterinarians, farriers, chiropractors and body workers. She worked with horseman and author Mark Rashid for 12 years, for two years as his assistant. Kathleen published a book about her time working for Mark Rashid titled “In the Company of Horses.” Following her internship with Mark Rashid, Kathleen spent the next seven years as a full-time clinician, teaching clinics across the United States, Alaska, the UK and Finland. Kathleen has spent the past five years riding regularly with Buck Brannaman and studying the work of the late Ray Hunt.
Kathleen is currently completing the requirements to become a qualified Cowboy Dressage instructor and clinician and has learned the discipline from the principles, Eitan Beth-Halachmy, Lyn Ringrose-Moe and Garn Walker. She competes successfully in recognized Cowboy Dressage competitions.
Kathleen and her husband Glenn live on a 450-acre family-operated commercial cattle farm in Molena, Georgia. At the farm in Molena, Kathleen offers lessons, weekend clinics, “Geek Weeks” and accepts outside horses for training. She and Glenn share a passion for good horses and quality horsemanship, and therefore spend much of their time together with the cows, horses and dogs.
Kathleen sees horsemanship as a fine art that she is still learning. Kathleen strives to put the horse first, and makes every effort to keep “the horse in the horse”. Kathleen believes that there are certain things every horse (and horseperson) needs to know and that many problems with horses come from the fact that the horse (and/or the person working with them) have missing or faulty elements in their foundations . Her true passion is to help change horses’ and peoples' lives for the better, using good horsemanship to help them live lives free of fear, confusion and anxiety.
Kathleen is an enthusiastic and dedicated instructor who is known for her ability to break down complex concepts and skills into learnable pieces and for teaching the "why" as well as the "how". As a female instructor and trainer, she is uniquely sympathetic to her largely female student base, and is a fervent believer in the strengths, gifts and abilities of her fellow women who sacrifice so much to pursue their love of horses and horsemanship.
Grey Horse, LLC