Monday, January 2, 2017

2nd January, 2017 Wiggle Room

Over the years I have worked with hundreds of horses and ponies and their owners. The ones that do the best are those that gradually become self-sufficient, able to apply the underlying concepts and feel to any situation, rather than just formulaic techniques. They begin to literally 'work it out for themselves'. At least a handful of the people I have worked with have become Recommended Associates, and others have taken all of the IH courses for their own satisfaction.

Some have incorporated other, compatible techniques with those that we used together, or even gone on a more narrow course, confining themselves purely to clicker or IH. All are working away quietly with their own horses, taking their time, just applying a consistent and logical approach. Once you realise that there is actually very little to it other than that, and let go of any notion that horses are naughty, it's usually easy to address any training issue.

During the break I have seen pictures of Debbie, in Kenya, long reining her showjumper, SkubaDiver to bring him back into work, Alison, talking about teaching the Dorset Urban Heath conservation ponies, Wiggy, Harvey, and Jamie, how to lead, and Hilary clipping a very relaxed looking Benji. Benji was semi-feral when she first got him and pretty complicated to work with. Hilary and I worked on taming him, and later starting him under saddle, but the very first time anyone tried to clip him he kicked the clippers straight out of their hand with an unerring accuracy of which Henrietta would have been proud. Hilary has worked with commitment and quiet resolve.

Hilary asks that we excuse the wiggly lines, but that's much better than having a wiggly pony.

Colt foals at the Moorland Mousie Trust continue to be trained using the No Fear, No Force approach too...the Exmoor foals helped me to develop it.