Johnny Higginson is not your average horseman. After 40 years of successful experience in the performing arts as well as winning the National title with the American Quarter Horse Association, competing and showing horses to world title championships he is a giant in the Equestrian world. He continues to use his ranch as a training facility for hunter/jumpers, dressage and western disciplines and it was once the home of acclaimed AQHA Champion Silver Inspiration.
Johnny’s an intuitive riding instructor with unsurpassed expertise and those who train with him, are rewarded with consistent wins.
PATH Cert. Advanced Instructor and mentor for therapeutic instructors.
Professional trainer/instructor able-bodied, multi-disciplines;
accomplishments include AQHA National Title, AQHA World Title, USC
Equestrian Team trainer, Pacific Coast Champion, VQHA Champion, and the PCQHA Champion. Professional actor and dancer. Education and affiliations include: American Academy of Dramatic Arts, PATH, EAGALA, USEF, DASC, SAG/AFTRA
Disciplines: western, hunter/jumper, dressage, all around
competitive trail, pleasure, shows, starting horses, horsemanship, therapeutic. Beginner through Advanced and instructs children to adults (ages 4 to 100).
Currently accepting all students for group and private, horsemanship, therapeutic riding, equine assisted psychotherapy & horses in training. Supplies school horses if needed. Johnny@ShadowHills-EquestrianCenter.com
Other Instructors/Trainers at SHEC
Chantal Zuniga began riding horses at the age of 6. She spent her youth competing on the A circuit across the Pacific Northwest from the pony through the junior hunter and jumper divisions under the guidance of trainer Dina Happy. In 2004, Chantal relocated to California and worked for 5 years as an assistant trainer at a Hunter/Jumper barn before starting her own training business, Valley Equestrian Sports, in 2009.
Chantal specializes in Hunter/Jumper training. She offers training packages for clients who own or lease their own horses as well as providing school horses for riders without a horse of their own. Chantal believes in building a strong foundation for riders of all ages and skill levels and maintaining happy and healthy horses through good nutrition. She is a patient teacher and strives to create a safe and fun environment to learn.
Celie Weston is a Life Coach and Riding Instructor/trainer. Originally from Denmark/Scandinavia, Celie has lived in many different countries from Europe to Australia, the Middle East and now the US. Celie has been featured many times in Danish media for newspaper, magazine articles, radio broadcasts and TV shows, documenting her work with behavioral training – rehabilitating problem horses and other animals. As a columnist, her articles have been published in both American and Danish newspapers and equestrian magazines. Celie has been a featured writer for Horseman’s News and the PRE Magazine – the latter focusing on the PRE in art.
Her love for horses originally led her to the UK to study with Monty Robert’s and Kelly Mark’s school of Intelligent Horsemanship. Since then Celie has studied with various top trainers – including Classical Dressage trainer and Master Horseman Manuel Trigo and Luis Fernando Villegas – who had the honor of receiving a scholarship for the second time from the Real Escuela Andaluza del Arte Ecuestre in Spain.
Celie’s main passion has always been Horse Behaviorism and the Art of Classical Dressage. However, Celie also has extensive knowledge in Western riding and gaited horse training. Her purpose is to inspire owners to communicate and ride their horses through the french classical philosophy of lightness: creating a higher level of aesthetics, peace and harmony in the movement and mind of the horse.
Gianna Safizadeh started riding and competing horses at the very young age of 6. Even though she was trained in many different aspects of riding such as colt breaking, reining and dressage she felt like show jumping was where she belonged and where her talents excelled. She went to school to learn the dynamics of showjumping and has studied under several top Grand Prix trainers from around the world. Gianna is an international rider and competes in Europe often with her horses. Just recently she compete in the Los Angeles Longine Masters and Met Tour in Spain. Her dream is to turn Global Sport Horse Stables into a globally recognized competition stable and to be able to take clients abroad to buy horses and to compete internationally in different countries. She believes in teaching riders how to ride with confidence and inspiration from within.
Cynthia Fahey has been riding and caring for horses most of her life. Always knowing that education was her purpose in life, Cynthia taught in the school system for over 30 years before transitioning full-time into her passion for teaching horsemanship. Her training philosophies are centered on natural horsemanship with the goal of teaching horsemanship that extends far beyond simply getting on and riding. Through her business Everlasting Horsemanship, Cynthia teaches her students to understand equine communication and behavior with the help of her lesson horses or her students’ personal horses. Cynthia’s natural affinity for teaching, lifelong experience as a horsewoman, and bright warm personality creates the perfect learning environment for eager students of all ages and backgrounds.