Thanks Wendy. Lilly has been under saddle for about year and 1/2. Last weekend was her first horse trial (Starter Division 2'3" pre-beginner novice). She will be going to a Karen and David O'Conner clinic at the end of May in Benton, Louisiana (Holly Hill) so we are very excited about that. She has been such an easy horse to start and a quick learner. Although the free walk and stretchey trot not there yet since she is just beginning to accept a light contact.
Hay Wendy, hooray making progress!!!!!!!! That's great you sound ike youare enjoying the work, that's important because Ben will be calmer . Take a feed out when you catch Ben next time , nothing like a bribe to sweeten the pot!!!
TECHIQUE FOR GO; Lightly increase the lead preasure in the forward direction. if no immediate response, increase the preasure as you also use whip-taps on the shoulder. This is easier to do if you are facing the horse, so you have to walk backwards. Maintain both pressures until the horse makes an attempt to step forward, so you are rewarding a basic attempt , Then try again from the lead preasure only as you walk backwards. TECHNQUE FOR STOP; After you have walked backwards for 5-10m ,Stop the horse by applying preasure through the lead backwards towards the horses throat, Increase the pressure until the horse's feet stop moving. Release immedaitely as the forelegs stop. Do not be fooled into thinking your horse leads well just because he chooses to follow you some places. The real test of leading is shown by his unconditional reaction to lead to rein pressure- he will go anywhere at anytime. Some people emphasise the need to 'gain respect' from a horse on the ground. These notions of 'respect' are humanistic terms and are not helpful for retraining problem behaviours in horses. It is more helpful and safer for horse trainer and owners to focus on 'having respect' for how the horse learns ( instincts and learned habits) than to focus on 'seeking respect' from the horse. For example when a horse is barging into your space, nudging into you, rubbing, or puching onto you or steping on you toes, think not about a lack of respect or about an issue of pecking order dominance- even though it may appear that way to us. Instead, remind youself that the horse has learned these habits through rewards he has found. Therefore these habits are a clear sign of the horse's lack of basic training in Hand - from every person that has handled that horse in the past. So Wendy, remember to ask yourself "What am I doing, or not doing to reward this behaviour?" You will find the heart of most problems this way. I hope that's a bit clearer as to the why's and how's, have fun be safe. Cheers Geoffrey
good job Wendy, before you lunge him do the Stop and Go exersises as well, apply pressure through the lead and release for a basic attempt at a step. Same with Stop. i'M VERY GLAD TO HEAR YOUR CONVIDENCE IS COMING BACK . Cheers Geoffrey