Building a solid foundation is key in your relationship with your horse. A relationship is built on communication and trust. I believe that communication builds trust. The better you can communicate, the better you will understand each other. Notice I said each other. We need to understand them just as much as they need to understand us. I like to think of communication as send and receive and not a one sided tell all. I feel we need to spend more time listening to what our horse is saying to us so we know if what we want to say to them is appropriate at that time. This is why we are doing 2 clinics this year on this topic. The first on May 18th and the second on July 20th.

I would like to point out that even though you may have a horse that has advanced in their training to a point of great performance. Some of these horses never got a great foundation. Even if they did, they can always get better by going back to the basics again. If we just keep going forward and never look back, we will progress, but some things will not. Sometimes we need to go back to see if there are any cracks in our foundation. If we get in the habit of going back to see where we did or didn't progress, we have more opportunities to see what areas need improvement. Many people come to our farm and see our 3 horses and think they're so well trained. I owe a lot of that to the beginners that come here for lessons. I use all my horses for lessons and they are always going back to the beginning every time someone new comes for a class. Each person just starting their journey in horses has that little different out look on things and a different way about them. They also have a slightly different body language than the last person. This gives the horse a chance to understand many different accents (so to speak). It is also helpful because the horse tries even harder to understand, because they know from previous experience that the person is trying to communicate with them. An example I could give to this could be if you ever had to work with someone who speaks a different language than you as a primary language. You both need to communicate with each other so you find key words and phrases so you can work together. The more you work together the more you understand each other. The higher the need to communicate and/or the higher respect for each other you have the more addicting the want to understand each other becomes. This is the same with the Human Equine relationship.

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Comment by R Jay's Farm on April 8, 2013 at 6:47am

Yes Donna I also agree with you. I see many people in all disciplines who can tell you every part of there horse and tack by name but when it comes to knowing and understanding their mind, most are just guessing. Working on a foundation allows you to get into the intricate parts of the mind so you don't have to guess, you just know instinctively whats going on and why. Having this connection can take you so much further no matter what you do with your horse. Thank you for your comment.   

Comment by Donna Blouin on April 2, 2013 at 9:44am
I also agree a strong correct foundation helps in all ways. I hope that we can get a swing at the national level so kids & beginners in all diciplines will learn more about how a strong proper position will help them in the long run to ride more horses & help more horses than knowing a list of med names their horses need to be successfull & rideable at shows. I like to believe horses & showing is attainable to all who'd like to do it. Showing not the goal for all,but being able to do all you'd like with horses does come from good strong foundations. Ground up learning correctly is a fab idea to share with all. Thanks for encouraging that. :)
Comment by R Jay's Farm on March 23, 2013 at 9:52am

Thank you Jackie. We  hope people find it useful.

Comment by Jackie Cochran on March 21, 2013 at 1:22pm

Very good advice!

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