Do Not Ride Your Horse Without Understanding This First!

What do you think is the most essential thing? What should you teach your horse first?

The first things that I work on with my horses is building respect. By that, I mean that I work on improving the way my horse trusts me and follows my leadership. In this stage, I want to remove any fear my horse might have towards me.

Horses follow a simple system of hierarchy.

A Horse will never think of you as his equal.

It always works in a way that you are someone that your horse respects, or someone that he doesn’t respect. If you have the respect your horse, he will never crash into you and try to push you. He will move out of your way nicely.

If you have your horses respect, he will follow you.

If you have your horses respect he will listen to you when you ask him to run around in the round pen.

On the other hand, if your horse sees you as someone bellow him in the hierarchy that he doesn’t have to respect, he won’t take you too seriously.

There is a “but”

However, even when you don’t have your horses respect it doesn’t mean that you can’t walk with him on a lead rope, or that he can’t move away from your pressure.

Usually, you will feel the lack of respect in the situations when your horse just doesn’t feel like doing something. For example, while you ask for a gait transition, or when you want your horse to back up in front of you.

Or if you want your horse to do something he is scared of, for example, get inside a trailer, or get away from other horses that he likes.

This is the number one cause of all issues novice riders have

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Get “social status” and he will follow you anywhere

Hierarchy, and keeping “social status” is something that every horse is occupied with every day. And horses are really good with it. If your behavior doesn’t tell your horse “I like you, but you need to respect me all the time” then your horse will probably start trying to see whether he really has to respect you and follow or he doesn’t.

But together with gaining respect, you also need to work on removing fear. Horses are not really afraid of humans.

The more predictable you are going to be, the better your horse will be feeling around you.

It is always important to be consistent, calm and fair with your horse.

When you gain your horses respect, and remove the fear he might have of you. You will start feeling a big difference. It will become much easier to remove his fear of some situations that previously seemed stressful and dangerous to him.

Is being scared of a plastic bag stupid? – Removing fear

Some horses are capable of being afraid of just about anything. But if your horse is afraid of a plastic bag, it doesn’t mean that he is stupid.

I am sure almost all of us were scared  at some point in our lives for no rational reason.

Fear helped horses survive in nature. When your horse gets scared, it doesn’t do you any good if you start judging whether he is stupid for being afraid of a plastic bag or he isn’t.

The only thing necessary is to remove that fear.

So for example, if your horse gets scared of a plastic bag, just slowly approach it, and let him stand next to it. Let him smell it and let your horse make sure that he doesn’t have to be afraid of it.

Then if your horse gets scared of it again the next day, just repeat the process.

If you get your horses respect he will not be getting scared as much.

He will feel safe because he would know that you are strong and you are going to keep him safe. He will pay his attention to you and it will be much easier and much quicker to train him.

If you don’t have his respect, your horse is not going to be paying nearly as much attention to you, and he will keep looking for things that might be dangerous.

Do Not Ride Your Horse Without Understanding This First!
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