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Urged by our ongoing search for more effective and kinder ways of communicating with our horses we arrived at reward based training. It was one of our horses that had led us there and it was the others that made us refine our skills even more and dive deep into the science of animal behavior and learning.


Eventually this lead to both of us wanting to share our knowledge, which we did via our companies Reward based Art of Riding and Horses With Choices. Now we want to take it to another level with Reward Based Horse Academy.

Our Story

We see things changing in the horse world. A lot of people out there questioning the traditions we were brought up in. Not only when it comes to our society but also in the horse world. Should we do things a certain way, just because it's always been done that way? Aren't there kinder and more effective ways out there? People are searching for knowledge and finding fallacies in traditional theories. Tradition is slow to catch up to science.

We don't feel there is a lack of good intentions. But we do feel there is a need for a practical education that hands you all the tools you need to make this work and make it your own, so you can achieve your own personal goals. Helping with both the practical part and the theory behind it. 

It can be a bit overwhelming when you just start out. It's such a different way of thinking and training and where do you even start? We want to help you on this journey. Because we believe that with a good foundation in both the practical part as well as the theory behind it, the sky truly is the limit for you and your horse. And you can take this anywhere you want it.

Why we started the Academy

Low frustration & high independence

These are what we strive for in all our interactions. Keeping frustration low, by adding clarity, choice and control. It's not only something we want to establish for our horses but also our students. We want to support our students’ commitment to achieving their own goals.


For this we encourage both our students and their horses to become independent learners, step by step, supported by our educational program. So you can be the architects of your own training goals.


Our Approach


Horses needs come first, always. This deeply rooted view guides us everyday. We adhere to the LIMA principles and view training as a tool to help our horses thrive in the human world.

Training is a part of our enrichment strategies to make our horses' lives better, richer and more interesting. Our horses' needs guide what we train.

Horse - centered

In all our interactions we strive to have a two-way communication with our horses. Our intent is giving agency to our horses, by not doing things to our horses, but collaboratively with them.


We encourage the horse to express their opinion and adjust our training protocol accordingly. Resulting in a fluent training session where both partners feel at ease and in control of the interaction. 

Conversational approach

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From every day handling to dressage

With a strong foundation you can build anything. We see it as learning to speak a new language. First we need to learn the ABCs, letters & words, to be able to start forming sentences. After all, advanced training is a deep knowledge of the basics. It takes time to become fluent in a new language, especially when both learners are new to it. In our educational system we assist you to become fluent, so from there you can start building everything from everyday handling to dressage.

Meet The Team

Angelica (she/her) is an internationally renown reward based horse trainer from Sweden with a background in classical dressage and academic art of riding. She specializes in positive reinforcement training for balanced movement in groundwork, developing proprioception, movement and communication through systematic reward-based strategies. Training horses, teaching students and coaching colleagues all over the world, online and as well as onsite


She has developed new strategies for creating high independence and low frustration from the get-go when working with food reinforcers. Passive and active pauses, independent eating and continuous feeding techniques are some of her signature strategies.

Her current projects include Exploring Nuances together with Eva Bertilsson, with lectures and courses for horse trainers and behavior geeks curious to explore and expand their training systems. Angelica is a part of the Swedish instructor collaboration OHR+.

Do (she/her) is a Dutch reward based horse trainer with a passion for learning and sharing knowledge. She has a background in communication sciences and her speciality is breaking down information into bite-sized pieces so that her students can easily digest it. Her main focus is on improving communication between the horse and the rider, creating independent learners that love training together. Encouraging them to notice small changes in their training.

Both in her own training and in her teaching she focuses on active participation, giving her learners choice and control over the process. This holds true for all training and interactions but is especially essential in her husbandry training, achieving better and easier care procedures with a cooperative horse. She teaches online with students from all over the world.


Angelica Hesselius

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What people say about us

"I really like the warmth & positivity in Do's coaching, it's easy to share anything without feeling bad about mistakes or doubts you might be having."

Judith Snoeck

"Training with Angelica helped me letting my ponies own the behaviours and they all have become true happy athletes."

Laura Knoops

"I found back my motivation. I was stuck in some shitty hole and did not know how to move on. Now I can move on and enjoy every minute!"

Lena-Marei Wiessner

"Sickan struggled a lot with her left hind leg. Our gymnastic has helped her find her balance and build her up to become more straight."

Ullis Andreasson

Any questions or want to get in touch?

Send us a message we are happy to chat with you! Click here to go to our contact form

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