Training Tips

Read these 47 Training Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Horse tips and hundreds of other topics.

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How Do I Help To Teach Collection?

Longitudinal Balance

To improve the longitudinal balance of a horse, the rider (or can be done on a lunge line) repeatedly asks the horse for up and down transitions, frequently (or within a five stride time frame). Such as Walk-Trot-Walk-Trot-Walk-Trot. This teaches the horse to keep a majority of his weight in his hind quarters. Helping to assist him in keeping weight off of the front end, and/or the Bridle.

   
What To Do With A Horse That Rears? or is Rearing?

Rearing

Rearing is the single most dangerous vice that a horse can have. It is my recommendation that if anyone has a horse that is REARING, to spend the time to research in your local area, a Trainer with several high (well spoken) recommendations that has had many years experience in helping horses to overcome this habit, and successfully without any Rider being hurt. You can ask your Equine Veterinarian, Farrier, and at Boarding Stables for their recommendations. When you have found that person, it is well worth your $$$ to spend on having the problem cured professionally. Or try and find a Rodeo String to purchase the horse off of you for Meat Value. This is not a vice to gamble with. This vice can be very, very dangerous.

   
What is the differences in Breaking A Horse Versus Joining Up?

Joining Up VS Breaking

Joining Up, is running out the energy of the "student". This method, simply runs out the energy. While proving to the horse, that though they be running from the herd, the trainer is still controlling the direction, speed and decisions of the horse. As the horse begins to submit, the trainer is still there, persisting with the original request. Proving to the horses' mind, that yes, he can refuse to obey, but "he will then be run from the herd" until he changes his mind.

And doesn't the horse change his mind from lack of energy to continue to run/or to disobey. In the "run from the herd" the trainer will constantly change the horses' direction, and run the horse in a small space {which uses more energy to repeatedly change direction & then run again in a "tight" space}; as well as repeatedly show the horse that the trainer controls the direction/speed.

For a horse to move at a Canter in a small space, the horse must moved collectedly, which again is a larger energy burner than to run wide open & free in large areas. Running free is also employing a lower stress level, than running in a small space. Stress is another employ of high energy burn.

Natural horsemanship is reported to be faster in its goals, purportedly from the lack of abuse; whereas isn't it really from the rapid energy release that comes by the horses' choice to refuse to obey, and therefore be "run out".

My only statement is that if you are working with a hot or high energy horse, it will still require sufficient amounts of time, and repetition, due to the energy level still being able to instill a stronger will of refusal, for a repeatly longer period of time.

The proven long standing argument AGAINST the "old tyme" method is still: in the times of stress, in times of difficulty, or "when the rubber meets the road", the horse will not be there for you if trained with abuse.

If a horse is at all hot or high energy, (due to the abuse factor utilized in most "Breaking Methods"), combining the deep ingrained memory that horses have, and the negative memories at that moment of "need" controlling the will, results in a horse that will almost always choose flight.

Breaking A Horse, is generally referred to as the "old tyme" method of training.

   
How do I develop impulsion?

Impulsion Is Developed.......

Impulsion is developed through performing up/down transitions in short frames, such as walk, trot, walk, canter, walk, trot, walk, canter, each for a distance of 3 to 7 strides in variances.

Can be developed by the use of cavalletti's in variances of height and location.

   
How Do I Prevent My Horse From Bucking?

Preventing A Buck

To Prevent A Buck From Happening:

AS the first signs are detected, the rider must be QUICK to apply these aids CONCURRENTLY~~!

half halt alternating hands;
loosen the contact allowing the horse to go forward, but NOT to drop the head lower;
alternate STRONG leg aids from left to right leg;
sit DEEP & HEAVY in the saddle;
ever so slightly allow your shoulders to slip behind the vertical.

   
What is meant by "breaking a horse"?

Breaking A Horse, or

Old Father Tyme's Methods: Cowboys, and horseman from years gone by believed that a horse had to be dominated, to be controlled; and since horses' use force with one another, these trainers believed that force was necessary with mankind towards horses as well; in order to earn/deserve a horses' respect. You will note that horses in a herd will sniff nostrils, and "talk" to one another. If one disagrees with the leadership of another, he will "snort" "squeal" and generally be quite vocal with his disagreement. That is where the conflict ensues between them. Usually the newcomer is the one challenging the hierarchy of the other. The established horse will usually use a)charging, b)biting, c)kicking to reinforce his position within the herd. It is from this behavioural pattern that "old tyme horsemen" believed that horse's would only submit, respect, obey if you could prove to the horse that you were more aggessive or dominent. This method worked most of the time, and with most of the trainers. But, what if you were not an aggressive, bold, or dominent personality? I am sure you can see that you would hate horses for forcing you to behave as they do in order to influence their minds and hearts into believing that you were the one to follow, that they could trust you to take care of them~?! Thus came development of "Natural Horsemanship".

   
Quick Tips To Retraining Older Horses?

Reactions To Fear In Horses

Many breeds of horses react very differently to a scare, threatening confrontation, situation, or object. Therefore, how you handle the recovery of that fear, will have a greater impact on them, depending on their nature, responses, past experiences, and often their breed as well.

Usually Hot Bloods need to see, smell, touch and completely investigate before accepting that you have said that it is okay. Remember while they are going through this process to stay calm, relaxed and completely unaffected by the element.

Warm Bloods and Cold Bloods on the other hand, are usually better off being completely distracted from the element of fear. Either repeat a half halt on the free and clear side, or stear completely clear of the element of fear.

Unfortunately we all must learn a certain degree from trial & error, and unless you have a coach or a previous owner, or trainer to ask, you will have to see the easist route for your horse to overcome, and come to grips with his fears/threats.

   
Why do so many Thoroughbreds & Race horses pull?

The Puller - Retraining Racehorses

Racehorses are trained to run by the bracing of the Jockey's body against the mouth of the horse/bit.

The Jockey standing in the stirrups and releasing the contact is the signal to slow down to a racehorse.

   
What is not Impulsion?

Impulsion, Isn't.........

Impulsion isn't:
speed. As Impulsion increases, lightness and lengthening of stride occurs.
lofty. Is not bouncy.
heavy, long or low.

   
How Do I Free Lunge A Horse?

Free Lungeing of Your Horse

To Free Lunge Your Horse:
1) put on properly fitting splint or leg boots....front & back legs.
2) put on properly fitting bell boots on front feet only.
3) put on a halter, completely fastening all keepers.
4) walk horse into the arena, taking a lunge whip.
5) double check that all gates/openings are securely closed & latched; and that there are no other horses or riders in the arena at the current time. Leave the lunge whip inside the gate area of the arena.
6) walk the horse away from the entrance, to a safe area in which to turn him loose. Not close to objects or walls or gates. Turn the horse to face you, and then unhook the lead shank.

Some horses once they know they are free, will buck, strike, and just plain throw a "wild kid" fit, so walk backwards or away being fully aware of what the horse is doing. Go get the lunge whip, and whenever the horse is showing signs of "lazing off", crack the whip a couple of times, and that should get him/her off and running again.

Once a horse knows that he is protected, he will come to love his "free play time" as much as he loves to see you or his "goodies". It is good for them to be able to run off steam without having to balance with a rider all the time. So try to let them have this fun time at least once a month, preferably once a week~!

   
How Do I Know My Horse Is Going To Buck?

Recognizing the Signs Preceeding A Buck

You must be aware of the signs:
twisted swish of the tail;
grind of the jaw; (can or not pin ears)
slowing of the forward motion;
shifting of the bulk of weight from rear quarters to the front end;
bringing the head down.

   
Is there alternatives to asking for the canter?

Alternatives To Asking For A Canter

To pick up your correct lead try lifting up the rein of which lead you are to pick up. For example if you want to pick up your right lead lift up your right rein. Remember to pick the rein up and not pull on the rein.

Horse Tips Comment: Remember whenever you are utilizing alternative methods from the every day normal, in training your horse, that when you sell the horse it is only courtesy to tell the new owner what you have taught the horse to do and how to do it; so that the horse will not be confused by the new owner not requesting something in the same manner as you have done. Also, you must be responsible for the reactions that alternative training methods can cause in the horse's behaviour.

   
Before I start teaching collection, what is my pre check list?

Pre Checks Before Starting Collection

Establish a rhythm in each gait.
Establish a supple bend to either side (can be assisted by lungeing).
Contact must be relaxed through the neck, throat, back while the horse is moving INTO the bit.
Horse must move straight, evenly on both sides. The rear quarters must propell the front in a straight and direct path.
Impulsion must be active in the rear quarters.

In Collection, the rear must be able to drop in order to elevate or to animate the front end.

   
At what age can my horse be broke to ride?

AGE TO START RIDING

A standard rule of thumb for the age a young horse should be broke and ridden is related to the completed growth in the knee or carpus joints. Between two and four years of age an xray examination can be performed to determine if the physical developement of the knee is sufficient to allow the horse to carry weight. Excessive strain to ligaments, bones and muscle should always be avoided when starting or training the young horse.

   
What Is An Invaluable Training Aid For Working With Horses?

One Of The Greatest Tools For Focus

One of the greatest tools for training a horse is the use of a Blinker or Blinder Hood.

When a horse is wearing a blinker or a blinder hood his ability to focus is restricted to the immediate front, and rider/driver by feel/voice. Therefore the concentration and focus of the horse is kept to the rider/driver/trainer only.

When using blinkers/blinders keep the training sessions very short (as the concentration & energy the horse uses in singularly focus'ing is tremendous). Keep the training while using the blinker/blinders to no more than 20 minutes.

A warm up and a cool down without the blinkers works great; while using the blinkers/blinders during the training period of focus & determined concentration.

Therefore your workout routine would be:
10 minutes warm up without blinker hood,
20 minutes training with horse wearing blinker hood,
10 minutes of working without blinker hood,
10 minutes of cool down w/out blinker hood.

   
How Do I Get My Horse Not To Overreact To Anything That Scares Him?

Respect Confronting Fear

In confronting horses` fears first they should respect you. Everything else if they do this is relatively easy. If they don`t trust or respect you yet, then facing, overcoming, confronting fears will be very difficult for them & you both.

The smaller the area in which to work, the better. Round Pens are GREAT for doing difficult work, such as facing and coming to grips with fears or scary objects. As well as building trust & respect for YOU! So think through every situation before you begin.

John Lyons has excellent procedures in working with a horse in a round pen, and overcoming fear while at the same time, building trust & respect for you as the horse`s handler. Remember to think the matter through thoroughly before beginning. Try not to create fear where there is none to begin with. Such as in sacking out a horse, spend a long time simply running the towel, sack, rope or whatever all over their body first, making sure that they are calm & comfortable with each development before starting the next. If a horse isn`t afraid of an object, then don`t use it to create fear, unless you have the time to make sure to reinstill the trust that same day!

WITH HORSES ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS, KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID WORKS THE BEST, and always very small amounts of work on the emotions at one time.

   
How Can I Help To Teach My Horse To Be Supple?

Lateral Balance

Continually practising broken lines along one long side of the arena will help to improve a horse's lateral balance. As the rider turns onto the long side of the arena, come in off of the track to the 1/4 line, moving inwards on a lateral movement. Proceed for a few strides, then laterally move back out to the track. Repeat down one long side of the arena, alternating sides. As the horse's balance improves, ask for shorter & shorter distances for the lateral movement.

   
How can riding behind the motion increase extension of stride?

Using Behind The Motion To Create Extension

Open wide the hip angle so that the upper body actually leans backward behind the vertical. As your seat bones push deep into the saddle, you should feel the horse extending his stride as long as your hands remain soft on the contact. Although this is totally unacceptable in the Show Ring, it can be a useful tool in training~!

   
What is the differences in Breaking A Horse Versus Joining Up?

Training Young Horses-Brief Overview

Young Horses, take EVERYTHING in very small portions, and repeat, repeat, repeat until both of you are so sick of it you are both doing it in your sleep! Remember with young horses, you are starting with a clean slate & no bad memories, try to keep it that way all throughout! I have found none of us learns from pain or fear or humiliation...even horses.

   
What Can I Do With A Horse That Wants To Buck?

Solutions For The Horse Prone To Buck

Horses that are prone to buck should be either:
a)free lunged with protective boots prior to riding;
b)lunged with a reinless bridle, protective boots, and no saddle to allow the horses' back the flexibility to release the tension as it desires to do by bucking. This also doesn't allow the horse's mind to comprehend that they CAN buck with a saddle on!

   
Development of The Muscles & Cardio in a Fit Horse/Rider.

Cardio Development

Once your horse is toned up from the Winter softies, you can begin this regiment of Cardio & Muscle Development Program.

Begin on Trails, (hopefully ones that have hills and flat)!

Walk 10 minutes, trot 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes, canter 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes, trot 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes, canter 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes.

I think you can see the pattern established here. By alternating the three gaits, you are alternating muscle groups, as well as bringing them up, then down, then alternating up, then down. This is what is happening to the Cardio system as well.....trot and canter both work the cardio system completely differently.

Happy Trails!

   
What Is The Best Way To Bit A Horse?

Bitting

When Introducing a NEW MOUTHPIECE to your horse.

Then put the bridle on without reins attached.

Lock him in his stall for an hour every day (even 2X daily).....I do this while they are eating their grain (then remove the bridle while they eat their hay).

After doing this for a week or sometimes two, they will not mind the bit at all.

Doing bitting this way, doesn't make them hate you while you are riding, and the grain makes them not think the "stall bitting" is as bad as it could be if it was "just for the purposed of bitting".

Before Riding for the first or second time or two, try lungeing with the bridle on, but with side reins or any other training devices attached to the dees on the halter or lunge caveson NOT TO THE NEW BIT!!!....that way making sure that their is no pain or control or misuse of the new bit linked in the horse's mind to the new bridle or bit.

   
How Do I Go About Training Green Horses or Youngsters?

Training Green Horses, Youngsters or Newby's!

Beginning Training at a later age, after three years, it all depends upon the horse's nature (temperment), how much handling he/she has had, how much ground work has been done, whether or not he/she has ground manners established.

Hire a Professional, someone recommended by Equine Veterinarians, and Trade Professionals (such as Farriers, Coaches, etc.).

Make sure in your selection that you are finding someone that KNOWS how to work with younsters, and has recommendations from several people, (even though the horse may be older, in development he/she is a baby).

In training a green horse it is worth every $ of the expense to have someone train them who has just a bizzilion years experience, and positive recommendations from individuals owning horses from the breed, and discipline that your horse is.

Natural Horsemanship is wonderful for pursuing the basics, the commencement....getting started under saddle, and again, someone that is highly recommended~!

Once the greeny is rideable though, you need someone that has worked extensively in bringing along babies into understanding basics on into the beginnings of some polish.

Then you will have the horse that YOU can enjoy.

I would ask a Professional such as a Veterinarian or Farrier that you know that you trust to look at the horse and determine the willingness & the receptiveness of the mind, and how much work/training/expense you will have to invest to have someone do the prepatory work for you. Quite often a horse left until an older age (which 4 is for training), he will have developed a resentment for any work simply due to the fact that in human years he is growing out of his teens, and not many teens would want to go to school when they haven't had to up to that age.......

   
How Do I Get My Horse To Stop Bad Riding Habits That Have Developed?

Getting Back To The Basics!

Now that autumn is almost upon us, you will have noticed through out the Spring & Summer that you have let little things slide in your horses ring practices that should have been corrected immediately! Horses are notorious for taking a half inch, then tomorrow expecting a full 2" of slack! Now is the time to get these annoying habits back underfoot!

Return to the beginning of reinforcement & training practices! These half inch`s include cutting corners in the arena, or not responding to an up or down transition within a stride. Day to day, and moment to moment correction of these annoyances that have developed, will eliminate them. Just as bad habits are gained with moment by moment reinforcement, so too good habits are established in a 30 day period. So for the next 30 days, correct them on EVERYTHING EVERYTIME that it happens. You will win!

   
What are physical problems affecting a pulling horse?

Riding Horses That Pull

A puller should always have the mouth & teeth checked first. Check for sores, tumors, abscess, cuts or bruises.

   
What is meant by "sacking out"?

Sacking Out

Sacking out is what is done with a horse, in order to allow it to realize that what is being done to it, although scary at first, once sensitivities subside, realize that NOTHING BAD is happening to it. Sacking out is where the trainer takes a non hostile object (such as a saddle blanket or pad), and moves it all over the horses' entire body in a slow but steady fashion until the horse is no longer in objection to the object or the motion/movement of it on the horses' body.

   
How Do I Get My Horse Not To Overreact To Anything That Scares Him?

Don't Create A Fear Of YOU!

In helping your horse to overcome his fears, don`t create fear within him of you.

Especially when a horse must overcome some difficult past experiences, don`t you loose your temper or react poorly to his reactions, `causing fear of you.

When a horse has had a bad or difficult past, he would rather flee the situation rather than confront it and be free of the fear; this increases with his age. In his mind he is free of the fear simply by running away. So always make sure that when undertaking to confront past bad experiences, to have the time, patience, and the control not to loose your temper, or react, or reiterate with anything that the horse will interpret as abuse. In his mind, he will think, this is worse that simply running away in the beginning.

Patience, time, lots of space to have repetition upon repetition upon repetition will overcome almost anything, no matter what the age of the horse.

Remember to end every session with the horse adoring you, respecting you, and trusting you. Thereby building trust & respect upon trust & respect.

   
What is wrong that my horse keeps his mouth open?

Horses Mouth Open

Third: Check the size of the bit to the size of his mouth. There should be no more than one finger width on either side of his mouth and the bit rings. Then check that the bit sits in his mouth properly, not too high and not too low. If the bit is too low, he will keep his mouth open, and will fiddle with his tongue in trying to find out what happens if he can get his tongue over the bit. If the bit is too high, it will cause a "gag" type of effect. The bit should only create two creases in the side of the lips when in the mouth....if a snaffle or a kimberwick. Curb bits and pelhams I try to only have one crease in the sides of the lips of the horse.

   
Is a horse that pulls okay?

A Pulling Horse

A puller should always have the mouth & teeth checked first. Check for sores, tumors, abscess, cuts or bruises.

   
How Can I Prepare A Horse To Learn Haunches In or Shoulder In?

Beginning A Horse To Understand Haunches In

Begin with the horse standing square. Stand infront to the 30 degree mark between the shoulder & the head front on. Take a Dressage or a slightly longer than a riding bat whip (not a lunge whip though that is too long) and ask the horse to move away from the whip as you very gently nudge the rear end away from you (don't do this in a manner of such assertiveness or aggression to the horse that he/she moves the front end. You only want the rear to move. Just nudge or tap him/her in a slightly irritating manner, but again, not enough to move the front end, and have the rear move away. Follow in a circle to have him/her move in full circle away from you. Once you return to the starting point, stop, rest, feed him/her a tidbit & relax. Then wait a few minutes, and start again. You want him/her to cross over the near rear in front of the far rear in their sweep away from you. Just practise this, and leave the riding work of shoulder/haunches in for much, much later down the road. After a few times, maybe five or six attempts. Stop. Rest. Then go the opposite way, with the same method. After that take him/her out to graze for half an hour at least as their reward. After a a couple or three months of this, then start with the front end. The front end is a bit different, but I will add this tip later. You don't want to do both at the beginning as horses confuse easily....they don't have our level of intelligence nor ability to juggle as many items on the mental agenda as do humans. So only one thing to learn at a time, and in baby bites...as this type of work is truly difficult if they have not been raised to perform in this manner from yearlings. Okay.

   
Tips For Warming Up or Cooling Down Horses

Warm Up/Cool Down

Just like their human Olympic counterparts, an equine athlete needs to limber up and cool down properly. Warm-ups should be no more than 10-15 minutes long and will improve the efficiency of the muscles working. At the same time warm-ups reduce risk of injury to ligaments, tendons, and joints. Hard Road WALKING is the best of all for warm ups/cool downs!

   
What does Impulsion do?

Impulsion, Does........

Impulsion creates/does:
creates spring, creating scope.
elasticity in stride, relaxation throughout.
lightness, lengthening of stride.
required to clear fences. Improper or lack of will eventually interfere with ability to clear fences.

   
What is wrong that my horse keeps his mouth open?

Reasons My Horse Keeps His Mouth Open

Fourth: Then the last resort is to believe that he was not bitted correctly in his initial training, and you will have to put on a Dressage flash attachment. Depending on the bridle that you have, it may be easier to simply purchase a bridle complete with a flash. Adjust the flash so that one finger slides under the flash, or between the flash band and the side of the horse's mouth or muzzle.

   
Proper Flexion For A Serpentine?

Serpentines

Serpentines:

Maintaining your internal flexion for each half of the circle, with straitness occurring only at the point of "X", for each loop of the serpentine, such as in a 3 loop serpentine in a 20 X 60 meter arena.

   
How do I safely turn out my horse?

SAFE TURNING OUT

Its important to be safe when turning out your horse to play .
Always use a lead shank or lead rope and lead properly.
Walk through the gate with your horse then...
Turn the horse to face TOWARD the gate BEFORE turning him free, so you can back away if he spins and kicks as he runs off.
It is best to put the gate between you and any excited horse before releasing.

   
What would be a beginning for teaching a horse to jump w/out a rider?

Training Your Horse To Balance Loose-Jumping

Start off simple, a X pole of 18" if the horse is 15 hands, or taller. Under 15 hands, make it 12". It will only help the horse to put out trotting poles, if they are used as a "lane way" effect to the jump.

Once the horse is comfortable going over the first X pole several times; then construct "bounces" at 10' apart....let's start with 6.

Start off with all odd fences, with the right standard set at 18". The even will have the left standard set at 18". Use your trotting poles to line the "lane way" effect perpendicular to the outside rail, but on the inside of the arena, between the fences.

As the horse becomes more comfortable in going through this grid alone; raise the second pole at each fence to form X poles at every fence. Again, start easy, 18". Progress to 24", then 30", followed by 36" in a X Pole Jump.

Once a horse is comfortable with this bounce grid, he is ready to learn to balance over the same grid, but with a rider.

   
How can I spot lack of impulsion?

Lack of Impulsion Causes........

Lack of Impulsion is evident when:
lazy in the haunches.
hanging legs over fences.
heavy on the forehand.
long, and low in the neck.

   
In training horses, how do I look for horses that enjoy the work?

Top Show Temperments

Top Show Temperments must include the following:
willingness, cooperative, agreeable, sensible, reliable, consistant, enjoyment of the work being done.

Equal balance between confidence, relaxation & stress is the basic foundation of showing success.

   
What Is Necessary To Know Before Teaching Collection?

Collection

Before you begin to teach the horse collection, the horse must first know how to bend at the poll, and give to the bit.

   
What is joining up?

Natural Horsemanship or Joining Up

Natural Horsemanship or "Joining Up" is focused on the premise that horses have a mind, a will and an ability to reason choice. This method is allowing them to make "controlled" choices in deciding that they want to obey, submit and let the trainer take control of them. This method does not use force, or belittling tactics of man or animal, or abuse, or severe training methods/equipment such as once was common in "Breaking A Horse".

   
Quick Tips To Retraining Older Horses?

Retraining Old Horses-Brief Overview

For tips on training an old horse....it depends on what the old horse has done, and what it is that you want to do; and the horse's willingness, and past treatment. I have retrained several older horses, and the most important ingredients is to get them to trust & respect you. This is accommplished by never allowing them to be hurt in the process of anything you are doing, and if they are hesitant or reluctant, to first BE SURE that what is requested is not hurting or scaring them. Fear & mistrust are their two biggest handicaps to learning!

   
How do I start a horse under saddle?

Beginning A Horse To Saddle

At first you should work with another person for safety reasons. It is preferable to have someone get on and you lunge your horse. That way your horse can still see you and get support from you. Continue the voice commands as though no rider was on the horse. Have the horse walk ALOT. (It is as he trots or canters that he might resist the weight of the rider.) Have the rider wear a hard hat and if possible, a padded vest, and use a western saddle. Take your time. Most often problems happen from taking the horse along too fast.

   
What is a martinglae and why use it?

MARTINGALES- Artificial Aids

It is best to use proper training vs artificial aids such as martingales. There are many types of martingales such as running, standing, german,racing and each serves a certain purpose and requires a level of professional skill to be properly adjusted and used.

   
The Rules of Caution About The Use of Blinker Hoods

CAUTION ABOUT Blinker Hoods

Although using blinker hoods on training horses is one of the greatest tools available; there are some very, very important cautions to be aware of with using one.

Horses wearing blinker hoods are singularly focused. They no longer can see behind or beside of themselves. Which (in their mind) leaves the horse completely or totally vulnerable to the trainer in keeping the horse safe and out of danger.

Being that the horse is blind by wearing a hood, except for immediately in front of it, the horse needs to be worked in a completely controlled environment in which he knows fully that he is safe and out of any harm.

An arena that the horse knows and trusts, and is completely relaxed and at ease in will work fine. If ANYTHING should arise in or outside of the arena will the horse is working in blinders, the horse should be made aware of it immediately.

ALWAYS USE BLINDER HOODS SPARINGLY AND CAUTIOSLY.

   
What is impulsion?

Impulsion, IS........

Impulsion is:
the thrusting power & push that comes from the horse's hindquarters.
creates spring, spring assists scope.
creates elasticity in stride.
creates relaxation through the topline.

   
How Do I Train A Colt To Have A Great Gait/Muscle For In Hand Classes?

Showing Fillies/Colts In Hand

To show a colt in hand, if he is a breed that the natural lofty motion is desired....spend 15 minutes with him 3X daily simply letting him "park trot" in an arena.

Just stand in the center of the arena, and attach a white plastic grocery bag to the end of a lunge whip. Don't crack the whip, or make any sudden or sharp movements, as this will encourage the colt to run or gallop and what you want is simply to "air him up" so that he performs a lofty, airey, park trot up and down the arena. Most often, simply slowly lifting the whip in the air from the ground, and back down again is sufficient to "air him up".

Remember, the purpose of the whip/bag is to startle the colt enough that he naturally "flags" himself, and strengthens these muscles, not the muscles that are used by galloping or running.

If you are showing in halter in quarter horse classes, then you want to work the colt at a slow, steady trot on a lunge line, long and low for about the same time frame every day, but AFTER he has had time to free exercise on his own, and get the "yahoo's" out of his system!

   
How Do I Get My Horse To Stop Bad Riding Habits That Have Developed?

Ground Manners

Getting annoyed that ground manners are all but forgotten? Then let's get these manners back under control EVERYTIME you are grooming, tacking up/untacking or handling your horse! These manners include not standing still while you are grooming or tacking up/untacking, being difficult to catch out in the pasture/paddock, walking overtop of you, not respecting your space, etc.

After 30 days, repetition of the good verses the bad on a moment by moment, day to day basis, should get those respectable ground manners back to where they should be!

If not, contact me!

   
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Guru Spotlight
Kristle Jones