What if your horse was so confident, that he accepts you as a rider without any worry or fear? When we ask a horse to accept to carry us on his back, it is a question of total confidence and trust. Being a prey-animal, the rider might very well be perceived as an attacking wolf. It is the same positions, almost in a blind spot and our legs are wrapped around the horse’s body touching the sensitive flanks.
Preparations for Colt Starting: 4 Exercises to gain your horse’s understanding and respect about direction [Video]
Did you ever ride a horse that didn’t go where you wanted him to go?
This problem can have two causes (if we exclude human error): A lack of understanding or a lack of agreement. Discover 4 exercises which will help your horse to not only understand your aids but also gain his willingness to let you control where he goes. You can prepare your young horse so well on the ground, that he understands and respects your aids from the first ride on. Just like a car, a horse also needs to have reliable steering to reach the final destination.
In part I of “Preparations for Colt Starting: Control the horses' gaits” I explained two dynamic exercises. Now it is about three static exercises which will help the horse to understand us better when riding. These exercises prepare the horse for all downwards transitions as well as stopping.
Why does he not go forward? Why is he running like this? We expect, without question, that our horses willingly accept that we are in control of their impulsion. We only start to think about it once we run into trouble: the horse either won’t go or is rushing and bracing. What seems so easy to us, is not always so easy to understand for our young horses when they get started under saddle.
The good news is that with a few specific exercises done on the ground, you can gain your horse’s respect and willingness to let you control his gaits.
In this article, I explain in depth the first group of exercises of the "14 Preparations for a safe and respectful Colt Starting" With the help of many videos, I show you how to establish a basic communication with your horse.
When I prepare a horse to be started under the saddle, I want to be sure that I can communicate with him. Otherwise, I can’t explain all the new things to the horse. My goal is to establish a question-answer communication which is going both ways. This will allow me to truly involve the horse into the process. Discover 2 easy games that will help you to create a dialogue with your horse.
How can we prepare our horse for Colt Starting that he doesn’t get in trouble and we can stay safe? With these 14 exercises done on the ground, your horse will find it fun to work with you, is open to new experiences and feels successful as a learner. Your horse will be ready to start his life as a riding horse.
Chevrenne is a 4-year-old Draft Horse mare of the breed Bretonne. She joined me to be started under saddle. With her almost 900 kg she is an impressive horse and as she can sometimes lack a bit of respect, I will pay special attention to lightness. What does it take to get a heavy horse like this to respond with lightness?
Dancing finished her colt start and went with success through my program of the first 8 rides. She has been on little trail rides, alone and with other horses, and is now ready to go home and have some holidays.
After 3 weeks, Dancing was ready and prepared to accept the rider on her back. I have a little checklist in my head, to make sure the horse is mentally and emotionally prepared to take this important step with full understanding.