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Meet the Husband and Wife Team

Changing it All

 Change is a GOOD thing! 
Let's be real; can we? You wouldn't be considering training if you didn't want to change some aspect of your relationship with your horse. Wanting a change doesn't have to mean that there is anything wrong with what you have now. Whether you are just starting your equestrian journey, or looking to master that last high performance maneuver, there is always more to learn, and there is always room for improvement. At De Frates Horsemanship we never settle for the best and we not only embrace change, we celebrate it. Our own journey has taught us to LEAD change to make our dreams come true and we can help you do the same. We use a blend of Horsemanship concepts paired with tried and true corporate management and training techniques, and a lot of hard work to make change happen, build confident partnerships and set you on the path to your equestrian dreams.
​We won't stop until you are happy AND successful. 
At De Frates Horsemanship, we specialize in's who we are and it's what we do.

Let us show you how.

Euro Coins

"Change is the only constant in life.”


Our Philosophy

Once upon a time, long before Dana became a professional horse trainer herself, she trusted a highly respected professional to help her start Angel. Unfortunately for both Dana and Angel, that professional hid their true philosophy on horsemanship from the outside world, only letting those who had paid their non-refundable fees in full in on the secret: this professional only pretended to use humane methods when training horses. As a result of this person's deception, both Dana and Angel were severely injured. Ever since, Dana has fully researched every trainer she has even thought about working with and has studied every method throughly before trying any of its techniques. Unfortunately, most trainers and clinicians do not openly share this information, and when they do, it usually requires you to pay a hefty fee first. Refusing to ever put her horses, or herself, in harms way again, Dana has walked away from most trainers simply because they refused to disclose the details of their program beforehand, or more often because they would only share this information for a considerable fee. We want you to be comfortable and confident in our potential working relationship before it begins, so we share our philosophy, methods, and the underlying theories behind why we do what we do with you to give you the opportunity to know all you can about us, before our working relationship ever starts.




We know; we're geeks, but you'll love us anyway. Understanding the science behind what makes horses, and the humans that love them, tick, on a biological level, allows us to more effectively influence behavior. We don't just blindly follow that the science says however; we read the research and seek to repeat the findings with our own horses before incorporating the findings into our program. We aren't just talking about basic biology either; we utilize many different concepts like biomechanics and operant conditioning too.

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For as long as horses and humans have existed, there have been theories about how to build relationships between the two species. History books prove that many of those theories worked too; horses wouldn't carry humans into battle if they didn't. We aren't saying we agree with every theory and method out there, but we would be fools to ignore the work of our peers and mentors. Our methods are based on the great work of countless trainers that have come before us, from ancient philosophers like Xenophon, to modern clinicians and trainers in a variety of disciplines. We study it all, take what works for us, and leave the rest.  




When it comes to you and your horse, it honestly doesn't matter what the science says will work, and it doesn't matter what those big name TV clinicians say will work. All that  truly matters is what works for you and your horse in the moment. We intimately understand that not every body moves the same way, and you and your horse may have limitations that prevent you from performing a maneuver the traditional way. We respect you and your your horse as unique individuals who each bring their own thoughts, feelings and experiences into the arena. We pride ourselves on meeting our clients where they are and adapting our methods to produce the results they deserve regardless of the challenges or preferences they bring with them.


"Show me your horse and I will tell you what you are."

- English Proverb


Get to Know Us


Dana De Frates

Like most trainers out there, Dana has been crazy about horses since the day she was born and riding since before she could walk. What makes Dana different, and what her clients say makes her so special, is that she wasn’t born into this life, she didn’t grow up in the industry, her parents had never had horses, and this hasn’t been her life long career. Dana has spent more of her life as an individual horse owner, boarding her horses, taking lessons and attending clinics, than she has as a trainer and clinician. She’s been gaslit and bullied by her fellow boarders, scrutinized for using ‘different’ methods than those around her, has studied with egotistical and manipulative trainers, she’s even been severely injured by an abusive clinician. To say that Dana intimately understands the challenges facing today’s equestrians is an understatement. 

Her compassion, empathy, and endless patience aren’t the only things that make Dana special however. Dana attended Saint Mary's College of California and received her BA in Education. She took her credentials to Google where she spent many years in the internal education department designing and delivering team development, leadership, coaching, and onboarding programs for intimate groups and organizations of 1000’s alike. Her corporate clients raved that Dana was the most gifted and natural teacher they had ever worked with, who also provided a safe and supportive environment that made learning even the most difficult skills entertaining and rewarding. On the equine side of things, Dana has studied multiple disciplines and training styles throughout the years and considers herself discipline agnostic, or as Jason likes to call her,
bi-equestrian. She grew up in the Hunter/Jumper world and also competed in Gymkhana and other club shows. As an adult, Dana rode Dressage for a decade, has studied many natural horsemanship methods like Parelli and Clinton Anderson, positive reinforcement training methods made popular by clinicians like Mustang Maddie, bridle horse/vaquero styles touted by Buck Brannaman, western performance disciplines, obstacle styles, and more. When Dana and Jason decided it was time for her to make the switch to training full time, she studied with Brandi Lyons to become a Certified Clinician. The result of all this diversity is a program that combines the best of all her experiences into a balanced training style that helps horses and humans heal, grow, and build powerful partnerships.

Jason De Frates

Jason has been a IBEW Union Electrician since graduating high school; his relentless work ethic and natural skill allowed him to quickly rise into management where he has managed multi-million dollar projects for several companies including Genentech, Google,, and The San Francisco International Airport. He now manages a department that creates the digital plans the field teams need to build and create masterpieces. 

Jason spent his youth constantly searching for his next adrenaline rush and found them through rock climbing, mountain biking, kickboxing, and stunting motorcycles. Those pursuits left Jason with multiple injuries including several damaged disks in his neck and lower back. The few experiences that Jason had with horses left him thinking that horses were nothing more than 1000 lbs brainless creatures afraid of their own shadows. That all changed when he met Dana, and more importantly, met Angel. Angel opened Jason's eyes to just how amazing horses truly were, and how building a relationship with a horse could change your life and he was hooked. He saw just how much joy, fulfillment, and of course, challenges, working with horses could bring to your life discovered a new outlet for excitement that not only was easier on his body, but also brought him the fulfillment all his other endeavors always seemed to be missing. After training with Dana and Angel for a few years,
it was time for him to get a horse of his own. 

​Jason and his first horse had a major accident only a month into their relationship that hospitalized Jason and left him with half a face full of metal. Despite that trauma, Jason’s love for horses has only continued to grow over the years, as has his horse collection. Jason and his old trusty steed, Boo, enjoy hitting the trails with Dana, while Duke has become his go to obstacle horse. Last but certainly not least, Jason continues to feed that adrenaline addition with Izzy by competing in cutting.

Meet Our Herd

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