Suzanne grew up in Charleston, SC where she began riding and showing at 8 years old. As a child, she rode thoroughbreds bareback and bridleless (halter only). Suzanne became interested in eventing and dressage and worked in area barns riding horses. At 21, she bought her first horse who later became her eventing and dressage partner and ultimately her trusted lesson horse for everyone including children. Suzanne learned the various aspects of classical dressage and the importance of proper groundwork and flat work which she continues to pass on to her clients and their horses.
Professionally, Suzanne worked in the medical field starting at the age of 16, received her nursing degree, and was a nurse for 7 years. She went back to school for her Physical Therapy Assistant degree and worked as a PTA for 1 year. She then combined her medical training with her love of animals and became a veterinary technician where she assisted in equine surgeries and handled anesthesia procedures.
She bought a gelding that had previously only been used as a halter horse. He bucked, reared, acted like a stallion, and was totally disrespectful. She tried everything she had learned and nothing was getting through to him. During this time, Suzanne had to evacuate herself and her horses from a hurricane to Rock Hill, SC. There she met Chuck Green who was conducting a clinic. Chuck worked with her horse and in 30 minutes had him acting civilized and respectful. Suzanne became hooked on his training methods and from there a partnership developed, not only with this horse, but with Chuck as well.
They bought a farm in Fort Lawn, SC and married in 2008. Suzanne learned Chuck’s training methods and incorporated them into the English discipline. She showed and competed, earning numerous first place rankings. She was competing 3rd level dressage and training in 4th when she stopped showing her own horses to raise their son. Today, Suzanne finishes and fine tunes her clients’ horses and breeds Donnermeyer and Donnersohn, their two Swedish Warmblood stallions.
Suzanne continues her equine education with consistent lessons from Eric Dierks and clinics with Stephen Hayes, Cindy Sydnor, and Sarah Geikie just to name a few. She is always open to learning from everyone.
Chuck grew up in California and later in Oklahoma on his Grandfather’s ranch. His grandfather raised horses, and some rodeo broncs so Chuck learned to start and ride all kinds of horses early. As it was the norm in those days, Chuck saw the rough way of working with horses and knew there had to be a better way.
Chuck believes the reason why most people have problems with horses is because they don’t know how to read them, and therefore, the horses don’t trust them. Chuck realized that forced training doesn’t work, so he quickly learned how to read the horse and make it their idea. He makes the wrong thing difficult and the right thing easy for the horse. He believes you have to have a language the horse understands, otherwise it is a surprise to them and it puts them in fight or flight mode where they will not learn. This becomes a waste of your time and the horse’s time too. Chuck says “I want to think like them” and he’s succeeded. He knows ahead of time what the horse is going to do. Sarah Floyd called him “half horse” because he is able to read the horse exceptionally well.
Chuck moved with his parents to South Carolina when he was 14. He then studied the techniques of most of the major trainers and developed his own training style. Chuck began starting horses and fixing problem horses. After he met and married Suzanne, he started working with more horses in the English discipline. From there the business really took off.
People come from all over the country for Chuck’s expertise. He says “If you have a trainer get mad at your horse, then get another trainer. Let the horse be your best teacher. He’ll tell you if you’re doing anything wrong. If you’re trying something new with a horse and you don’t see progress within 10 minutes, you’re also doing something wrong.”
Today Chuck does selective training with a limited number of horses, because he doesn’t like to be rushed. He feels rushing a horse and not being consistent with the training is not fair to the horse. He is addicted to seeing success and progress in horses and clients. Chuck finds it so satisfying when he and the horse understand each other. The horse feels relieved and Chuck can sense that. He says “We connect so the horse feels safe with me being the leader. If a horse feels you’re the leader he’ll back you 100%.”
Chuck also says “When you love to do something, you get good at it.” Chuck Green is surely an amazing example of that.