Saturday, December 8, 2012

8th December, 2012 Stunning Steyning

Jenny and I were off at dawn this morning to meet up with Kate and six other IH students for our IH workshop which included handling work with Kate's two New Forest foals bought through Beaulieu Road Sales just over a week ago. The foals, Sunny and Excalibur, had cost her just 28 guineas in total and yet they are well grown, sturdy colts with good breeding. Since she got them they have proved to be calm ponies and therefore they were great for teaching the No Fear, No Force technique right through from start to finish in just two short sessions.

Newlands Farm Sunny

Backley Excalibur

Older New forest pony, Sky, who can sometimes be funny about being caught.

Foot handling practice.

"It was a fantastic day, I really enjoyed it & learnt lots. It was lovely to meet everyone & the weather really could not have been more perfect! Thanks Kafee for arranging it all & to your daughter for making us a lovely lunch & for the chocolate cake." Helen

"Thank you so much to Kate, Sarah and Jenny for organising it:)" Sophie

I asked everyone for their key learning point:

"Mine was squeezing the tendon to ask the pony to lift his foot, instead of hauling on the feathers."KS
"For me it was understanding how horses have to think about what we are asking them to do & how this goes against their natural instincts. It was nice watching the foals working this out. I was also surprised how my energy went up when Excalibur pulled against the pressure of the scarf rather than towards it (my natural response wanted to pull back!). A learning point for me was to keep my energy down & remember to release the pressure as soon as we got it right!" HM

"I think seriously, the importance of the right kind of touch - oh, and how to put a headcollar on without needing to flick it over their head!" SJ

"I need to remember not to hold my breath like a predator! Also some clever little things, like the non-flicky way to put on a head collar and the trick of pawing the ground with your own foot to stop your pony pawing the ground." LN

"How to go about putting the first headcollar on from their back."MP