Training Exercises: Changing Sides

Changing Sides The Goal: The horse moves his body so that you can reach one side of him and then adjusts so that you can reach the other side while you stand in one position. A great exercise to soften your horse to moving away from a muzzle pressure. It makes grooming a breeze. It… Read More Training Exercises: Changing Sides

Training Exercises: Back Up

The Goal A horse that respects his handler will back away when his handler moves into his space in an authoritative way. The only time a horse ever backs up in the pasture is when a more dominant horse demands it. Therefore, it is a natural way to gain respect from your horse. Used frequently,… Read More Training Exercises: Back Up

Training Exercises: Line Longing

Line-longing is built on round-penning PLUS disengaging the front and rear. The Purpose of Line-Longing Round penning and lunging are very different. The purpose of Round Penning is to teach a horse that you are the respected leader and he is your willing companion. The purpose of line-longing is for your horse to learn to… Read More Training Exercises: Line Longing

Training Exercises: Join Up

Joining Up is the first step in a partnership between you and your horse. It builds his trust and overcomes the “fight or flight” instinct inherent in all animals. The object of this lesson is to teach your horse that you are his leader and require his respect as well as friendship. You tell him… Read More Training Exercises: Join Up

Training Theory: Pressure

There are two types of Pressure: Physical pressure and Intention pressure (threat). Physical pressure: that is the tactile feelings such as the bit against the bars in his mouth or the rope halter bearing down on the poll at his head. It can be as uncomfortable as necessary to move him, or as subtle as… Read More Training Theory: Pressure

Training Theory: Fight or Flight

Threatened mammals (including horses) have built in instincts for life preservation. When threatened, they can either turn and run or stand and fight. This is called the “Fight or Flight” reflex. Because horses are ill-equipped to fight (they have no horns, fangs, or other very effective fighting weapons,) they generally choose flight. Predator species are… Read More Training Theory: Fight or Flight

Training Theory: Release Training

Release training is the art of releasing a horse from pressure at the exact moment that he complies with your cue or request. It is the basis of all horse training – the holy grail of horse trainers. Horses don’t learn from the application of pressure. They actually learn from the RELEASE of pressure. Proper… Read More Training Theory: Release Training

Training Theory: Two Brains

There is evidence that LIKE the human brain, sensory stimulation actually develops a horse’s brain. Learning facilitates more learning. The more you stimulate and teach your horse, the more neural pathways are developed along which new learning can take place. It’s like adding on to a railroad system. Once the tracks are laid to one… Read More Training Theory: Two Brains

Training Theory: Natural Horsemanship

In the early days of cowboys and vaqueros, horses were “broke” to ride. The emphasis of most horse training was on overpowering a horse or wearing him down until he accepted a rider on his back. Natural Horsemanship has been a growing trend. There are several famous natural horse trainers who propose that the best… Read More Training Theory: Natural Horsemanship

Training Theory: Yield

Teach Your Horse to Yield to Pressure Yielding: when a horse softens to (moves away from) physical pressure instead of resisting and moving into it. (see Pressure) Teaching a horse to yield to pressure is a paramount building block of horse training. Yielding will turn into an entire resistance-free attitude. Horses naturally push into physical… Read More Training Theory: Yield