Working with horses isn’t hard, but there are a few steps/ guidelines we should do if we want the experience to be both fun and exciting for horse and person. You can train with fear or you can train with feeling where both participants come out smiling. Remember, you are also the student so must learn from the horse almost as much as the horse must learn from you. As a trainer, I have to really pay attention to what horses are saying to be to be successful with different horses. All horses respond to leadership but the way you enforce that leadership is according to the horse, not who you feel.
Have Feeling when you work with horses. Be aware of what you are asking so you are looking for the try and feel what you are doing. Learn to work with a feel. The first thing to work with so you can learn to work with or follow a feel is asking the horse to put his head down. To do this stand beside the horse, place one hand on top of his poll (behind his ears) and one on the knot where the lead rope attached to the halter. Think and envision what you want your horse to do. This will help tell your body what to do. Now Gently Push down with your hand on his neck behind his ears, and put pressure on the halter in a downward steady motion with your hand under his halter. As soon as he moves his head, RELEASE! Take your hand totally off the halter rope and lift it from above his poll. The horse will go, Wow, they quite pushing/pulling!! By releasing quickly, you have just followed your first feel and started communicating with your horse in a why he can understand and respond to.
Do this a few times, until he starts responding as soon as he starts to feel the pressure. Now If your horse is quite so it’s safe, lets try this with your eyes closed. So place your hands back in the position and close your eyes. Ask for a give, when the horse lowers his head a bit, release the pressure. This will start training you to train by feel and rewarding the first tries. You will feel good and so will the horse for he will start understanding you!!! Horses appreciate it when we start learning to train by feel.
Don’t take, don’t pull, ASK. Breathe and Relax! Let’s teach your horse to respond to calm and softness, not fear and nerviness. When you start off riding, you shouldn’t even have the reins for several weeks, this way you aren’t going to be using the reins as an crutch to balance yourself, putting the wrong pressure on the poor horse who wants to work with just a feel. If you learn to ride with your body then the reins/your hands will be just another tool and not the primary one for riding with!! We can learn to feel the horse through our seat and legs and then our hands.
BE CONSISTANT!! Pay attention and do the same thing every time you ask. For example mounting, don’t let the horse wiggle and move one time and expect him to stand the next. By doing this, you are saying, “hay just always do what you want and sometimes you will get away with it!!!” I’ve found it takes about 3 times for a horse to catch on to a move we don’t want them to do. So learn to be consistent when working with your horse and things will start being easier.
Well I’m out of time for now, I’ll have to improve this page latter I think I need to include my them TEAM I’ll have to add pictures and keep improving this page.