Hi all

 

I was just wondering what kind of natural horsemanship is better for a begginer like me. I don't know if I should do the Parelli way or the Monty Roberts way.

 

I have no idea what to choose because I think they are both great ways. I would love to do it before my horse goes to a trainer, but maybe she would get confused????

 

So could someone please lend me a hand and tell which is better for me as a begginer ??

 

Sorry if I have confused you lol.......

 

Thanx have a great day :)

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Very very valid points, The barefoot discussion is alway a hot one so is bitless. But I think it's because the horsey world is varied also with so many different activities and kinds of riding. Experimenting is the key. You don't know what you like or dislike unless you try it :)

Good argument!
Marlene Thoms: Excellent! All so true! All so important to keep in mind every day you work with your horse and often when dealing with other people.
As I say. Each to our own. We are all entitled to an opinion and this can sometimes be a very touchy subject. Im not here to argue with anyone, im just offering advice and names of those who I admire.

I myself looked into parelli when it first came in and did not find it to be all that it's cracked up to be. I have watched both Pat and his wife, read articles and tried it first hand my sister even purchased video's and packs etc. I do not make judgement without looking into it first, it is not in my nature.

I have seen pat at various festivals and sessions and watched him in various video's on the internet and never been 'Moved' by him like I am by other horsemen and women. I will not bring up the most recent events that have stirred on the internet world, as I believe it is for people to judge and no one is to say who is right and wrong. Just like people may think my clicker training or liberty work is 'wrong' or 'right'

The tricks I have been teaching the horse in my profile picture were actually part of an excersise regime to ease a back problem and muscular problems caused by a twisted leg and an accident before I got her. Teaching her spanish walk, back crunches etc etc are all beneficial to help her lift and stretch her spine, it was used in conjunction with reiki and pole work etc. Now I use it because she finds it fun, and I myself have learnt so much about her and how horses think by doing it.
However the type of people I was describing can be less humane in their methods usually involving ropes or straps to manipulate a horse into a position rather than allowing them the time to get the correct balance/muscles needed to do it safely and accidents happen.
For example a horse may be taught to rear by backing them into fence and waving sticks upward in hopes to get a horse to rear up as a defensive mechanism or someone sitting on top pulling backwards and kicking etc, rather than maybe holding a target that the horse has been taught to touch with his nose just out of reach to get the horse to lift slightly then gradually increasing it so the horse can slowly improve balance etc etc Those are the extremes I am talking about the fine line between bonding and building trust and getting the best out of your horse, and people who want things done as quickly as possible. The difference between hurrying a horse, and spending time, playing and having fun. Don't get me wrong there are thousands out there that teach tricks as a way to bond etc, or help improve communication and posture but there are always those who use the more abusive extreme to get the results. I myself teach things at liberty.

I do agree that anything really that we teach a horse is a trick, with different outcomes and different ways of enforcing it, either through pressure, pain, praise, vocal, physical, treats, etc etc

I am not one to throw any form of NH down anyones throat and I follow no one in particular but there are people I admire and methods I admire, and others who I do not have time for or do not agree with their methods wholly but still may have valid points and ways of training a horse.

So maybe a have a good old read and a look on the internet and see who you would admire most or decide what methods and idea's your horse would find the most exciting.

Monty Roberts - Excellent horseman who developed his ways through seeing his father abusing horses, he actively sought out other methods to get a horse to 'want' to be with his human.
Pat Parelli - One of the most popular, but a little bit like Marmite, many either love him or hate him.
Nevzerov - Classical dressage, no tack, true horsemanship, absolutely incredible to watch.
Jean Francois Pignon - Has a fun way of playing with his horses and his horses are divine. Very playful, energetic way of training and looking after horses, He has my utmost respect.
Kelly Marks - Wonderful horsewoman and as monty said himself 'He has never found anyone more capable of portraying his teaching than her' She can really get the best out of her horses.
Klaus Ferdinand Hempfling - Incredible man who has turned the lives of many horses around, and shown owners the light
Clémence Faivre (absolutely stunning horse woman) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S1PFnVp2WvE who really does have one of the most incredible bonds I have ever seen.
Chris Irwin - A member of barnmice I believe, lots of video's around. Very practical.

All names worth looking into. Maybe you can combine methods.
Ayesha, I appreciate your response. I might get in trouble for this but it appears to me that in general those from European countries, like yourself, that have been around horses most of their lives have vast information about many different horse people and styles of training and I admire that. Maybe I just haven't encountered those from the US that have had opportunity to be introduced to some of the older masters of horsemanship.
I don't like any sort of force on any animal. I make some exception to this when it 'appears' necessary as a last hope for an animal when if it's ways are not 'fixed' it is likely to be destroyed. I recently saw videos of someone working with a horse that could not be bridled and the trainer ended up doing a 'cowboy' rope thing by tieing the horses leg up which looked pretty cruel and potentially dangerous to me. I'm still left wondering why this technique was used as it seems there are other more time consuming ways that would have been effective and less extreme for the horse. I really did not like this! But I can't disreguard all the good things I've seen out of this same trainer. He has helped so many. It is not a technique commonly used by this trainer. I have seen similar used by others and didn't like it then either. Even in the "Horse Whisperer" a similar thing is used to help the horse and girl come together again as the horse in the movie has some huge trauma issues.
I hope we can continue to talk cause I think I'd learn much from you in general . I'm pretty sure we'd both come to the conclusion that we both are very caring horse lovers and admirers. We might never come to agree that Pat's good far outweighs his bad but could agree to disagree. You will not find me defending anything, anyones does that is cruel. So u understand me a little better, I grew very fond of an abused horse that grew to trust me and my gentle ways but could not tolerate much normal handling without sporatically 'loosing' it and becoming dangerous. I was only able to handle him at all because he'd learned he could trust me. I never did the clip on chin with him but the rest was some Parelli and some just instinct. Anyway, I did not own this horse and had no say with his outcome. It's a long story but bottom line he ended up falling into the wrong hands and sent to Canada and the meat market. In other words he went thru the slaughter system which haunts me to this day.I tried to follow his path to save him after he was suddenly sent away with no prior knowledge on my part. When I was finally able to find his path it was too late for him. But, if tieing his leg up or doing the laying down technique would have possibly brought him around and made him safe in general THEN I'd have wanted the attempt made. Neither of these things were attempted and I'm not saying they would have helped but sometimes they do. But I don't think these extreme practices should ever be used in non-extreme situations. Sometimes they are used for the convenience and time saving of humans....not okay with me.
I'm glad we discussed deeper where we were each coming from.
Do you ride? With traditional saddle and reins or only 'totally free'
Would you want to look at my 2 youtube videos and point out anything there that you find cruel? I'm curious where we might differ in how we see things. If I'm missing something I'd like to know. Ellen pointed out that my horse does not like me wiggling my rope at him to get him to back. I do think he finds it irritating 'sometimes' . But its not painful or cruel. Nor did she imply that it was. A couple days after this video he was all ful of fibrant energy. I'm open to new ideas presented nicely. If you choose to accept this mission click here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b08pm9ihcHk
Very very good response :)

Over here in England there are a lot of horsey people, all with very different views about how horses should be treated, trained and looked after. I've grown up with my wonderful mother, a stern believer and follower in Monty roberts, but at the same time her own unique way of breaking down barriers and really getting through to horses she deals with. From a young age I have known her help dozens of abused, wild, or difficult horses each one going on to be a successful family horse/pony and I soon followed in her path. Helping and learning. It was not until last year when I got my mare Navara that I really put my heart and soul into it and finally found 'myself' and at the same time helped 'find' Navara. She was a mare that had been left out in a herd to fend for her self, not a lot of handling done, and had a wild and 'difficult' streak to her, hard to catch, and eveything that comes with it, defensive and hard headed.
I bought her on impulse after sitting in a field with her, she scooped up water in her mouth crept up behind me whilst I scrubbed the trough and dribbled the icy water down my back. This was a horse who I had been warned about and who's future was uncertain. In the year I have had her I have spent at least 3 hours a day every day breaking down the barriers, the phobias and the quirks to find the kind, gentle and intelligent girl that was waiting to be found. Communication was hard, she would not lead, pick up her feet, or be tied up without causing drama, so gradually I started thinking off my own initiative how could I help her. I have to admit she did used to scare me, she would suddenly bolt when being led, or barge, or even go for me if she did not want to do something. I didn't ride her for 6 months as the ground work needed to be improved before I would put myself in jeopardy. I then found out that there was an underlying back issue, and had many McTimony treatments given to Navara, and was told she needed excersises, stretches and lunge work doing to keep her supple and to help her back settle in the correct position. I wanted to make this fun, so taught her to target a 'tiger' a bit of cloth on a stick, after she got the hang of it I used to touch her side with it, she would bend her head and touch it, I then taught her to bow, and to 'point' to help her to lift her back ect until only 2 months ago when she was given the all clear that I found an enormous amount of pride, and then looked back and saw that all this had been the most fantastic way of bonding with her, and all her work and issues had dissappeared. She is now a very very clever, cuddly mare, a pleasure to work with, and I truly believe we were meant to be together, and she was meant to show me how horsemanship/friendship should be.

It is awful when we love a horse that is out of our control. Our stories are similar. I loved a Trakehner gelding who had an issue with rearing. I would have taken him home, and given him years if I could, but he was not mine to help, and he went the same way much to my dismay.

I do ride indeed, I ride English, both with and without tack, I use treeless when I can, and often ride my horses in just a neckrope or a halter, however I also ride in full english also. I do not like gadgets or anything harsher than a snaffle bit, but again my opinion only. I would be glad to look at your video's and I can point you in the direction of my youtube for you to have a look at in your own time. www.youtube.com/thundersrose I will respond to your video via your barnmice page so as not to clog this one up too much.

Kind regards

Ayesha xx
Great information! Will def look into some of these authors and horsepeople!
I just use my intution, which means that I take into account what I want to accomplish, then study up on any method that interests me, and see what I can do to make these methods fit me and my horse... I usually think for a while before I even begin training a horse, then just 'go with the flow'. As long as the horse is relaxed, there isn't any abuse... intended or otherwise, and both the horse and I are happy with the outcome of each step I keep going... always ready to re-evaluate, and think along the way, what is my goal, how best am I going to achieve it, and is this WORKING??? Sending your horse away is not something I recomend, unless you are the cause of the problems you are having... if this is a new horse and so far problem free... I would suggest believing in yourself and your horse, study up on what you think will work for you and start thinking like a trainer! Goals, achievement, and success... take each step day by day and be happy with babby sized progress as these are the lessons that will shape you and your horse for a lifetime. Remember as my fav instructor always said, there will be pit falls and plateaus... don't sweat the small stuff.

When I started out I had no money, the first horse I owned (I was 14), was a rig, who looked at the world like a bull would, and with just that amount of regard for humans. Badger was supposed to be a gelding, and a three year old bomb proof horse??? (Yes I was very green!) He was the toughest horse I ever had... but also the best horse I have ever had. He was $600 and a 1/4 horse, that competed and beat 60 000 dollar imported GW. I was proud of his accoplishments in the ring, but even more so as a horse that learned respect and manners. I did a lot on that wild child! I had him until I couldn't afford to keep him any longer at the age of 10. He became so good people really did think he was a gelding. He was always dangerous for others, although safe for me... how did I do it despite everyone that knew anything at the time telling me that it could not be done??? Each day I set a goal, even if it was just to redo something he knew, I never over faced him, I was calm, and thought of his needs, and wants... and how to convince him that he needed to do the same with me. I commanded respect and more importantly gave it. I made mistakes along the way, as did he... but it was a learning curve. I had no money for lessons and clinics, so I watche others at their lessons, talked and more importantly listened, and read, read, read, all I could. Went to each show I could, even if I wasn't showing (Badger or someone elses horse) and paid attention... each thing I learned I fit into my personal training method, and discarded but didn't forget the rest... sometimes these ideas still come back and I use them today... in the end I have my own way, it does not fit into any box, but it works for me-- far better than if I tried to imitate someone else. I don't have a set way of doing anything, but do what comes naturally each day... and for me this has proven successful, I have a rep for training horses that are untrainable... years ago with show horses, and now with STB's. I find what each horse likes, and work with that, if it takes carrots, or pats or whatever, if I have to repeat over and over something, or never do the same thing twice... whatever it takes to make me and the horse happy... I go with as little equipment as possible, and I never look down on any safe and kind method... and even at 40, all these years later, I listen, listen and read, read all I can... I don't have to do everything that I learn, but I never disgard it either. I would simply say this to you let your horse be your guide, let your own mind and common sense teach you and along the way you will be better for it.

take care and good luck, I realize this is not the answer you were looking for, but telling you to go to a method that I don't really believe in would be wrong... you would be forcing yourself to follow ideas that might not suit you and your horse just becuase a book or intstrucitonal, or whatever would be saying this is the only way! lol

deb
I love your reply but am left with a question. When I started at 50, I had no clue WHAT I could do. I mean really a bit clueless. I needed some sort of rough draft to even begin to build a relationship with my horse. My horse was already well trained, a real sweet heart too but I was afraid on horseback and really really wanted a special relationship with my horse. I did lots of reading and video tape watching and acted as a sponge at a training barn where I originally boarded. Where does a really new to horses person start from day one of going out and trying to interact with their horse. I felt like I needed some sort of guide. Each person sure does have their own story to tell.?????????
Hi

All I can tell you is how I begin with each horse. I start by brushing them, talking to them, and offering treats... getting a feel for what type of personailty I am working with... what kind of soul each horse has... and I really do look at their eyes and can tell what messages they are sending me... I also pay attention to body language... how is the horse reacting to me. If they are a normal horse, I groom them with my hands as well, messaging their mains and 'bitting' down on the base of their neck like a horse might... anything the horse dosen't like I don't do... next I often have others around me, or just my horses, I'll spend time with the horse still on the crossties, or just on the end of line tied or in the stall-- depending on if the horse is broke to crossties... in all I am trying to make a connection... minus the round pen, minus chasing the horse etc. I let myself be distracted by others and my other horses, and talk and discuss in a normal way or wander off and talk to the other horses... then come back and pay attention to the other horse... by the end I know what I am dealing with... I discount all the other history of this horse at this time, and just pay attention to the horse that is in front of me... most bad horses end up never exhibiting the problems that they did for others when they come to us.. we truly give them a fresh start.. some problems are so ingrained that we still have lots of work to do... but this is the very begining... we in effect make them a part of our herd, people and horse herd... each day brings them closer to this end... if the horse is at all receptive to my attention, then I end up usually leaning against their neck, and hugging them, talking and laughing and sharing whatever conversations are going on around me... even previously 'bad' horses, usually end up 'friends' with me after a short time... no fan fare, no hype... they know that I like them and they like me... the next step I do with all my horses as well, the good the bad and the ugly as they saying goes... sometimes it can be interesting with an unbroken yearling but in the end it works! lol I take them out for a walk... I don't care where I am headed, don't care what the type of horse is, I just put a lead on and start walking. Kind of like the dog whisperer I guess LOL. I just spend time with them grassing if they will, but if they won't I walk them until they relax, if they are really hyper, I'll turn them out for a while, then walk them in the paddock or field... but in the end we walk and I work on walking together... also I always use a lunge line for walking... for safety, and so that I can let the horse lead me as well as me leading the horse-- horses love this and will often be won over by it very quickly-- I don't care if it's an old horse or a baby we walk... so they have now learned that we are a unit, that we like one another, and that nothing bad will or has happened. I have learned what makes the horse tick... food, pats, attention... does the horse even really like attention??? etc.. this is my connection that they are talking about that they gain in other ways.... I have been known to walk up and make friends with some pretty aweful horses, that turn out to be great horses... I am always respectful of the horse and their power/temperment, and of the owner's wishes... but usually (especially with STB's) the horse is really just misunderstood and needs fair play to show their true colours.
In the case of your horse you already likely have this conncection, time is the best way to make it and of course I strengthen the conncetion from the first day... we spend loads of time with our horses, more than most I would say, with usually 2 to 3 horses only for one person, and sometimes one horse to one person in our family... we always tried to keep the stable relatively small for this reason. We are there from early in the morning until late at night, and my son currently stays all afternoon with our colt 'babysitting' if you will.... time is my friend as you have problably figured out! lol
For anyone just spending time would be the best bet... walk with the horse, spend time brushing, teach tricks if you like, laugh and play with them... most horses have a great sense of fun and adventure... most of our horses spend a lot of time in the crossties just being with us... enjoying the conversation if other people are present, or the company of the other horses in the barn while we go about our business. We talk baby talk to our horses and spoil the heck out of them... yet they are never 'spoiled', they are the best behaved horses no matter where we go...
I would also suggest that you go into each situation 'knowing' that it will go well, that it will work, and usually it will, positive attitude makes a huge difference. That was another lesson Badger taught me... my defence against this very dangerous horse is that I was totally fearless and I truly believed that nothing would go wrong, that he would not hurt me... green I know but it worked... and to this day it still does... horses are flight animals and if we are confident than they will often show far more confidence than they would otherwise on their own. The gelding I now have is a great example of this... a very nervous horse by nature and by cruelty-- he was horrid in the paddock for everyone else previous to us... he peed every five seconds, shook, washed out, and reared and was quite dangerous to be around, he had to be run into walls to stop him... would run off the track and is still a run away at times on the track (we are working on this-- good at home now, but needs more time on the track)-- now he stands like a normal horse in the race paddock before and after the race and only pees normally... we did nothing other than spend time with him and we are VERY calm and relaxed in the race paddock... we carry on like he is normal and indeed he has become normal... no one can quite believe it, and people keep watching to see if he will revert... he will be fine... I will do anything to relax a horse, I used to hug Willow Ryan's head and hide his eyes like an ostrich! People thought I was crazy... but it worked!

Once I have made myself a part of the horses life, and we are 'friends' usually really quickly, but not always to the level that I want, I then will saddle, or harness depending on the horses job... and on a side note, I will often ride my race horses since this is a much closer conection even if they will never be shown... and if I am riding, I don't set out for the first week to do anything, I just ride, often on the walk, often just around the barns, or maybe a hack... if the horse seems to like exploring... then by the end of about a week or less I usually have an excellent relationship with the horse... and I start training... in the end I have not used any one way, just mainly time is what I have spent... attention, grooming, loving on them, and more time... tricks, treats, whatever makes them happy... I use bribery a lot, but it comes from the heart and the horse fast finds out that I really do enjoy giving them treats and paying attention to them... it becomes a game... and it works... I also expect the horse to give in return... and they do, time and time again. I don't know if this would work for everyone, but I have always been good with animals... so it works for me...

So to go back to your question... I always told all my students that their best 'weapon' was time spent.. and it can be well spent or not it is up them... if this means that you take up a method go for it, if it means you just do as I do and put the horse in the isle, then go out and go for a walk, go for it... also the relationship you have on the gound will not always translate to the one you have on the horse... it can but not always. Horses, like dogs do not always translate one training area with another... so you will sometimes have to start all over again once you do ride... if this is the case I hack the safe horse for miles and miles, and if the horse is unsafe I will keep them in the ring, but work them short sessions, and then just usually get off and teach a lesson, or just watch others work, then get back on and work the horse again... this might go on for a couple of hours with the horse being offered to pee, and a drink periodically... the horse isn't tired, but learns that I just keep going back until their is calmness... many horses can be bored into sense and calmness... if it is a race horse this translates into jogging (going slow miles trot or pace) 10 to 12 miles... most people only jog 3-5 in this side of the world, but in Australia and New Zealand (at least they did when I last read about it) they jog long miles as well-- and I guess when I think about it I am again spending time?? lol
The more I want to bond with a horse the closer I keep them to me... if they could live in the house with me than they would... I know this is not actually totally difinitive as answers go, but it is hard to translate a lifetime of being with horses into words... I just follow my heart and have a very relaxed way around horses that seems to work... I have never been nervous, so I often have to think outside the box to help those that are... I used to tell my more nervous students to think about something else, what to make for dinner, what bills they have to pay, who was the guy they most liked at school currently??? and start chatting to me, to the horse, to the other students... it often worked... another approach was to think about everything from the horses prespective... how you can make it better for the horse... so you think less about your own worries and more about something else is the idea... other than this it is a battle that you and everyone else must face... not an easy one either... for you it might be better to pick a method at least for a little while, and as long as their is only kindness in it, and you work at it-- likely it will work for you. I would suggest that I do have issues with 'chasing' horses...in a pen or out of one-- as this only drives them from us... it is a form of mental 'worry' I won't call it cruelty as it is not that harsh if done mildly... but I am not a fan of it... I have never chased a horse in a pen, yet any horse I have worked with has 'joined' up with me if you want to call it that... and in fact we had a horse that we sold back to the previous owner come back to us on three seperate occasions... for us he had only two chains across his door (Sudbury Downs Raceway) and for the other guy he had a locked stall door in the end... he had to be barred in to keep him there... Sam kept comeing home. We also had a quiet 14 year old race horse that we only had for one year break free from him new owner after not seeing us for a year and come across the grounds to us... we had a heck of a time getting him to go back... so for us at least time and kindness seems to work...

I wish you all the best, I am heartened to know that you are trying to get a real realtionship with your horse, being around the STB horse people I get pretty jaded... so that I is why I write to barnmice and follow it... people like you make me know that I am not alone in loving horses and wanting what is best for them... Cheers

deb
Deb, I really enjoyed your note. Glad you wrote. I have done and still do much of the stuff you mention in your note. But I didn't come up with much of it on my own. I had others that gave me suggestions and sometimes I'd pick up ideas from video tapes but most the stuff came from well known trainers. I use ideas from different trainers but the majority came from one. The process has been much longer then I thought it would be BUT i think most of that is due to my issues, not my horse. I am a rather anxious person and it definitely shows up when I'm riding. I have gotten very comfortable on the ground and am improving in saddle.We are at a friends house for a week or more and I'm really tickled.how well the new situations are going. I think this will help us work into being more comfortable.when we start trail riding and camping together. I have been leading Cash around on a lead line alot and I spend 3-8 hrs. a day with him. It's hard to come home from the barn.
Thanks for posting this one Shirley. One of the best I've seen for a great rider/horse relationship. Far above some of the adults or some "experts" I've seen. This young lady makes it look easy, but time spent with her beautiful horse has obviously been considerable, it looks like she enjoyed every minute of it. I am always impressed when people can ride with invisible equipment, less is more. I am jealous, but maybe one day I will be there with my horse.

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