Monday, 21 September 2015

Training Shiraz: Part 2

"You cannot build a dream on a foundation of sand" [T. F. Hodge] and so it is with horses, the solidity of their initial training can create a base from which great things can someday be achieved...or at least allow me to putter around safely on my pony!
Weaving cones, combining pressure and drawing, and inviting her to think about the task and be more aware of my body language.

I have continued all of the yielding work from before, and I am now adding in drawing her towards me.

Backing from pressure and then drawing her back

I have been working on lots of ground work, being mindful to push her to improve yet not over-face her with anything. Instead of just simply making her do the things, I am trying to set her up to think and problem solve.

When I send her on a circle I am giving her the task of maintaining the circle until I invite her to stop. Love how she is already starting to stay on task with a loose line and keeps her inside ear on me waiting for her next task.

A little fun at the beginning of trot work!

We have been practicing parking at the mounting block with me leaning over her back and working on both sides equally. Now is the time to get up and begin working on one-rein stop!

Shiraz being a super star at the mounting block.

I worked on one-rein stop for a while on both sides. I am looking for not just the stop, but yielding her head and flexing her neck with softness.

I finished up with basic turns where I am asking with my leg and seat, but use the stick to help her make the connection. So far so good!


  1. she's so cute!! seems like she's making great progress too!

    1. Ridiculously cute! Yes, real progress - finally an easy horse to work with! :)

  2. Your methods are exactly the same as my trainer's :). She is a huge rope halter, give to pressure believer. It is hard for me to be patient but I know it is important! Shiraz is doing great!!

    1. Thanks - Shiraz is certainly impressing me! I have found these methods really good for a young horse's start in life--they seem to just soak it up and in the end you have this really neat language created that just makes everything else easier!