All Blog Posts Tagged 'training' (234)

Listen First, Train Later.

Photo by Patrick McMahan

The first time I met him, he was two months old standing in a stall with his mom. He was bright and intuitive, an Andalusian/Appendix…

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Added by Anna Blake on July 11, 2014 at 9:00am — 4 Comments

Walter Sings the Songs of his People.

WM3dogs

Walter, Tomboy, & Preacher Man supervising chores.

My friend Sarah says, “All dog stories end the same way.” I know what she means. None of us humans are getting out…

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Added by Anna Blake on May 30, 2014 at 7:12am — 1 Comment

Equine Behaviour term of the week: Primary and Secondary Reinforcers

Reinforcing a behaviour is something a trainer does to make the response more likely to happen again.  When a builder reinforces a bridge or structure, he’s making it stronger. And that’s what I want to do each time  gets the right answer.



A primary reinforcer is giving the…
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Added by Lindsay Grice on December 28, 2012 at 7:57am — No Comments

Do Some Horses Learn Quicker Than Others?



Smart. Clever. Dull. Clueless. We all have stories of horses that connect the dots and others that …don’t. So, really, are some horses sharper than others?

As a trainer, I’ll swear to the value of having a well-defined, systematic approach to training. I’ve also learned (sometimes the…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on December 11, 2012 at 7:34am — 4 Comments

Equestrian “luck”

Horse psychology insights: for a winning edge in the show ring and in…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on November 12, 2012 at 9:00pm — No Comments

Blaming My Horse

When I assume my horse “should know better” the truth is at that moment, I’ve really just run out of creativity, patience and my knowledge of equitation science. 



Equitation Science is using the system of how horses learn and…
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Added by Lindsay Grice on November 5, 2012 at 9:00am — No Comments

Flight Response

Flight response: A horse’s instinct as a prey animal, to flee from perceived danger. 



Dr Andrew Mclean says “A structure deep inside the brain called the amygdala, sorts out stimuli as to whether they are fearful or not. Fearful stimuli receive special recognition by the brain in terms of…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on October 29, 2012 at 8:30am — No Comments

The Rhythm of the Course

The common denominator shared by hunter courses and competitive trail courses is that each have a prescribed distance between obstacles which determines the rhythm in which the course should be ridden.…
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Added by Lindsay Grice on October 23, 2012 at 8:55am — No Comments

Oakley Diaries - 11: He Does Confound Me Some....

Out on the trail, bushwhacking through woods too thick to walk through on foot, we come across a fallen tree, branches everywhere, and pine trees on the other side. Vinnie is behind us, following. I ask Oakley to approach so I can see if there is a way around. While I'm looking around, he keeps walking up to the tree, looks down at the trunk as if to say "oh, this up to my chest. I can't step over this... I'll have to jump..." and…

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Added by B. G. Hearns on October 9, 2012 at 5:31pm — 4 Comments

Stressed out: Humans and Horses. Part 2

Can riders transfer stress to their horses? A study presented at the International Equitation Science Symposium several years ago confirms it…

53 pairs of horses and riders were tested (each of the 26 horses at least twice with a different rider). Riders were also asked to rate…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on October 1, 2012 at 9:00am — No Comments

Sending a Horse Out for Training, and Then He Comes Home

Sending a Horse Out for Training, and Then He Comes Home

First, I admire and respect a lot of people who train horses.  Training horses can take a lot of bravery, knowledge and skill.  Trainers are IMPORTANT, good ones can clear up the confusion of the horse, show the horse how to move better, and train the horse to be obedient to the rider.  Good trainers can also humanely train a horse for many of the specialized games that people like to do.  Good trainers can take a ruined horse…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on September 30, 2012 at 3:08pm — 2 Comments

Stressed out: Humans and Horses. Part 1

We were cautioned as an audience at a recent Cavalla performance to refrain from flash photography for the safety of the horses and riders…I was skeptical.

I reasoned the stressful part for the horses would be what’s going on inside the ring. Performing in close proximity to other…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on September 24, 2012 at 1:04pm — 2 Comments

A Few Thoughts on How Training Has Changed

A Few Thoughts on How Training Has Changed

When I started with my first horse over 40 years ago horse training was sort of considered an esoteric activity that only adepts could do.  Most people sent horses to trainers because only trainers had the equipment and the secret knowledge necessary to train horses.  After several months at the trainer’s place the horse came home, hopefully knowing enough about carrying and obeying a rider to do whatever its owner wanted. 

It was so…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on September 9, 2012 at 2:44pm — 2 Comments

Ready for the Show Ring?

As a judge and competitor, I’ve seen a lot of bad horse show experiences. From horses who begin to anticipate in the class to those who refuse to go in the gate. There are riders falling off and others just falling apart emotionally. 



If training a horse is like climbing a…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on September 5, 2012 at 7:29am — 1 Comment

Cheer up! It’s all your fault.

We’ve all been there: Schooling our horse, asking for something, but not getting the right answer. We try one thing and then another, the work is sticky so we try a bit harder. At the same time, the horse feels a bit more resistant.

“This wasn’t just plain terrible, this was fancy terrible. This was terrible with raisins in it.”  -Dorothy Parker.

But then…

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Added by Anna Blake on August 31, 2012 at 8:32am — 1 Comment

Back to School Time.

It’s that time again- the sun’s a bit late in the morning. Geese are starting migration and horses are growing hair. School buses are out in full force.

It’s been 40 years since I got summers off to play and ride, and then lost sleep over what to…

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Added by Anna Blake on August 24, 2012 at 8:37am — No Comments

Training term of week: Discrimination

Discrimination is the ability to choose or differentiate between things. We make it hard for our horses to discriminate when we’re wishy-washy with our cues.

Dr Camie Heleski, Michigan State University, describes a study that illustrates this point…

In a study by Flannery, ponies…

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Added by Lindsay Grice on August 23, 2012 at 7:44pm — No Comments

Is My Horse Suitable for Dressage?

The 2012 Summer Olympics concluded this week. Dressage got a bit more attention than usual, partly because of Great Britain’s wonderful win on home turf, and partly because of political satirist…

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Added by Anna Blake on August 17, 2012 at 7:42am — 4 Comments

Victim of Love: The In-Your-Pocket Horse.

-Written by request from another trainer. Nothing I am about to say is new, just hoping to provoke thought.…
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Added by Anna Blake on August 10, 2012 at 8:30am — 3 Comments

The Oakley Diaries - 9: "Reculez pour Mieux Sauter"

Oakley had a light July.

We aren't going anywhere for August, and probably not in Septermber, either.

We are going to concentrate on basic dressage work and  jumping skills over low jumps.

First, because he got kicked good and hard by a mare who wears…

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Added by B. G. Hearns on August 1, 2012 at 5:00pm — 1 Comment

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