Saddle Up Horsemanship

Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway

Posts tagged horsemanship

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Speeding up 101: Use a safe and controlled environment like the round pen. Confidence building 101: Move closer, stay longer. If speeding up makes you nervous, do a lot of what you are confident with and a little of what makes you nervous. Get as close as you can to your goal and stay as long as you can. When the nerves become to much, go back to what you are comfortable with.Here, Cordelia gets as close as she can to her goal of trotting with two hands on the reins - one hand on the rein, the other on the saddle horn. Together, we get Shorty to jog circles for as long as she is comfortable with. Next, we will take a break, take deep breaths and pet him all over. Whenever she is ready, we return to gaining confidence and balance at the trot.

 

Speeding up 101: Use a safe and controlled environment like the round pen.

Confidence building 101: Move closer, stay longer. If speeding up makes you nervous, do a lot of what you are confident with and a little of what makes you nervous. Get as close as you can to your goal and stay as long as you can. When the nerves become to much, go back to what you are comfortable with.

Here, Cordelia gets as close as she can to her goal of trotting with two hands on the reins - one hand on the rein, the other on the saddle horn. Together, we get Shorty to jog circles for as long as she is comfortable with. Next, we will take a break, take deep breaths and pet him all over. Whenever she is ready, we return to gaining confidence and balance at the trot.
 

Filed under Lessons horsemanship confidence

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I stay right beside my students until they are confident on their own. I will challenge and encourage them to do everything on their own - but I will not push them beyond what they are ready for.
I stay right beside my students until they are confident on their own. I will challenge and encourage them to do everything on their own - but I will not push them beyond what they are ready for.

Filed under Lessons horsemanship

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First things first: always flex and stand still when you first get on. This reassures your horse you won’t instantly be asking for movement, eliminating that frustrating wiggle worm of a horse as you try to mount. :)
First things first: always flex and stand still when you first get on. This reassures your horse you won’t instantly be asking for movement, eliminating that frustrating wiggle worm of a horse as you try to mount. :)

Filed under Lessons horsemanship

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15 Days until books open to schedule summer lesson students! Books open April 1st, new students begin in May. More details about days and times to follow. For the next 15 days, enjoy daily photos and training tips and get excited about your summer full of horsemanship!
Tacking up - Saddle Up Horsemanship students are expected to learn to do everything on their own. I want to give my students the confidence to build a relationship with a horse on their own - eventually being able to do everything confidently with out my assistance.

15 Days until books open to schedule summer lesson students! Books open April 1st, new students begin in May. More details about days and times to follow. For the next 15 days, enjoy daily photos and training tips and get excited about your summer full of horsemanship!

Tacking up - Saddle Up Horsemanship students are expected to learn to do everything on their own. I want to give my students the confidence to build a relationship with a horse on their own - eventually being able to do everything confidently with out my assistance.

Filed under Lessons horsemanship

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If you take yourself seriously, so will your horse. If you become an athlete, you’ll have the energy and balance to make your horse the athlete you want him to be. Show and rodeo season is just around the corner - join me as I do a fitness tune-up for me and my horses! Let’s be fit to ride!

If you take yourself seriously, so will your horse. If you become an athlete, you’ll have the energy and balance to make your horse the athlete you want him to be. Show and rodeo season is just around the corner - join me as I do a fitness tune-up for me and my horses! Let’s be fit to ride!

Filed under horsemanship fitness

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At the core of each discipline are the same basics of horsemanship philosophy and cues. Anyone who tells you different is either ignorant or selling something…or both. Learn the horsemanship philosophy, learn how to think like a horse, learn how to communicate with the horse and you can accomplish anything you desire in any discipline! (Kelci L. Goad)

Filed under horsemanship riding

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Respectful Obedience or Resentful Submission?

“Submission is when a child appears obedient. While their parent has a watchful eye over them, they are well behaved. Not because they want to be, but because they feel they have to be or they are forced to be. Often I hear parents of a college student in total confusion and frustration as to why their child has stopped being active in the Church. The reason: the child was not taught or given the chance to make the choice on his own before. He was simply told he would be going to worship on Sunday morning and bible class on Wednesday night. Of course when given the chance to explore his own options he would skip out on a few worship services and bible classes! Obedience is when a child is well behaved because they want to be or, they know they should be…not because they are forced to be. The parent has instilled in them right from wrong and they chose right. The parents have not been a constant force for the child to fight against and finally submit to, but a gentle guide – leading the child, but allowing them to make a few decisions and mistakes along the way. When mistakes were made, the parents were there to make the correction…and then move on. “

This is a bit of a paraphrase of something I’ve heard a few times from a teacher who I greatly admire. His words have been running back through my head recently as I have been looking further in to all the different “methods” of horse training. There are those who would never use the word “obey” when referring to getting a horse to do what they want. Others constantly use words like ‘obey’ and ‘make’.

“Well I can make that horse do just about anything I want him too!”

“Make that horse listen to/obey you!”

I’m becoming convinced that both of these methods of so called training are based on a misunderstanding of the English language.*laughs* Specifically, the word Obedience. It’s no surprise though, look around us! This misunderstanding is not just in horse training. It’s with children and parents, employees and bosses, wives and husbands, even Christians and our Lord.

So who would have thought that I’d get a horse training lesson out of a bible class, right? But I seem to be able to make anything about horses if I try hard enough. *wink* I’ve gone back and forth for years as to what exactly my training philosophy would be. From early on in my equine endeavors I was exposed to both sides. I did know the side of complete force was not right. Ya know, the kind of so called “training” that can be likened to physical child abuse. That side just never worked for me; in fact it made me not only infuriated but also physically sick to watch. Then there is the trainers that don’t even like to be called trainers because that word is too ‘harsh’. Correction of a horse is never an option. Why? Because there is no right and wrong…there just is. It is what it is. Yeah. These are the people that often get killed or at least hospitalized by horses. “Oh I was trampled and stomped on by my horse, but that’s okay…he didn’t know”. Exactly, he didn’t know. Why? You didn’t teach him. One does not have to harm a horse to establish the fact that running over a human being is not the way to declare your love for them.

Before I go any further, I need to establish something. I do not by any means claim to have “the perfect training balance”. I mean, there are hundreds if not thousands of trainers out there that could not only train better but also explain and write this blog better than I can. I’m still in the very beginning of this process I’m embarking upon to hopefully become the kind of trainer I want to be. That being said, I shall continue.

Now, I understand and embrace the fact that training methods often have to be altered on a horse to horse and even breed to breed basis. Kind of like kids I’ve noticed. For instance, if my mom had disciplined me by taking away my Gameboy…it really would not have been a great hardship for me. However, disciplining my brothers in this way would have quite possibly made it seem as though the world was coming to an end. Different types of corrections will work differently on each horse. However, corrections must be made if a wild animal will be living a domesticated lifestyle. I went through a short period of time when I wasn’t so sure about that. I thought, perhaps I should be going for a totally equal relationship from the beginning. Then I was reminded of how horses interact in the wild. There is a pecking order established, and the followers do not despise the leader, they depend on the leader and they respect the leader. Correction does not have to be done harmfully and your horse does not have to hate you for it. Correction is a way to gain respect and to establish that even though you are partners with your horse, you are the leader of that partnership.

So, my goals in my training: I will always work to make sure the horses under my care are as healthy and happy as possible. I will pay attention to detail. I will show patience towards horses in training and I will train in a way to work with their natural instincts rather than fight against them. I will exhibit true leadership skills to become the leader in the partnership with my horses. My passion for training and caring for horses will always shine through in my work. 

Respectful Obedience is not a haltered horse walking behind or even beside you in the arena with his head down. Respectful Obedience is a free horse in an open pasture walking beside you with his ears perked waiting for what you ask him to do next because he respects you and wants to please you.

(Kelci L. Goad, 2/3/2011)

Filed under horsemanship

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Success Defined

My first semester of college I took a course on Equine Business Management. In the first unit we were asked to define what success meant to us within our equine endevours because that would be the driving force in our business plan. Of course, regardless of what success meant to us we had to come up with a solid plan finacially and legally, but what does success look like to me? Is it the money? (ha, if you are in the horse business for the money you are confused ;-p) Is it the horses themselves? Is it my own personal success in the show ring? Well, lucky for me I had already experienced a small glimps of what success in my equine endevours will look like.

During the summer of ‘09 I experience what success is to me. I was watching one of my first students compete in her county 4-H showmanship class - a little 8 year old girl who, 4 months before would have literally been shaking in her boots and possibly crying from nerves. But not this time. She walked out with a smile on her face and a winning attitude in heart and mind. My heart was pounding…I was more nervous for her than I have ever been for myself. The pattern wasn’t perfect, but it was very good for an 8 year old. As she stood in the lineup waiting for the placings I wanted so badly to hear her name called for a blue ribbon, and I wanted desperately to run out in to the arena, give her a hug and tell her how proud I was of her! The announcer called the white ribbons, the red ribbons, the blue ribbons, and started in to the placings…I was scared, thinking they had skipped her name. When she was the last one standing in the arena they called her name. Grand Champion. When I met her in the warm up pen she jumped into my arms squealing with delight. That summer I won Grand myself multiple times, I was the #1 girl on our state team and I won the 1st place year-end buckle for youth NBHA in my district….but I’ve never felt such success as I did when that little girl’s name was called. As good as it feels to win a blue and purple ribbon or a buckle; my success will be defined by my students. By their growth and development in their riding, partnership with their horse, and in their ability to keep a winning attitude. While other things will be important to my business, my students success is above all else.

(Kelci L. Goad)

Filed under horsemanship teaching business