Thursday, June 9, 2011
Thursday, June 2, 2011
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Monday, May 2, 2011
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Here is part 1, of a spoken and video answer that refers to the question and answer below.
Hi Caroline, I have this young 3 1/2 year old canadian gelding who will be turning 4 this spring. We have been working over the winter to get him ready to start under saddle. We have your "Starting Your Young Horse: Preparing For the First Ride" DVD and we can do everything on it now! So last thursday we saddled him for the first time, had already prepared him and got him used to a rope around his barrel. For the saddleing he stoud still, and after a few steps he had a little fit that lasted about 20secends. After his fit we partner walked and did a bit of lunging at the walk. In all he had the saddle on about 20min. So i couldnt go see him friday so we went saturday and since then he is terrified of it the saddle and the girth. We have tried to approach and release but it doesnt work, we have tried touching himwith it quickly and taking it off but nothing seems to work. When he sees me lift the girth he will start lounging around me or try to evade it. We dont really know what to do, i was thinking i could restart from taking the girth by itself off the saddle and getting him used to it, and then the saddle and then combine them. Also what would you recomend on the first ride so he doesnt buck?
thank you, chloe
I'm sorry to hear how scared your horse is now. I think I understand how it happened. Sounds like there are 2 areas that weren't solid before you introduced the saddle. The exercises in the DVD were designed to guide you into a way of being and doing that supports deep levels of acceptance, trust, partnership and leadership. If you introduced the rope around the belly, you many have broken your horse's trust as this is not an accepted technique of ours and goes against our principle.
I have worked with so many traumatized horses and it has been proven over and over, through the ground exercises I provide in the DVD, that true acceptance of our leadership (guiding hand) and trust in partnering with us can be achieved, simply and naturally. Meaning, you don't need to add anything, just get deeper by asking for more from your horse and while you are, make sure you are listening to what your horse has to say so you don't push them too far - or not ask enough. Once you know what they are saying, you have something to work with. That is KEY to mastering horsemanship and what training and building a solid foundation is all about.
I mention many times in the DVD about the mind set of our horses and how we are looking for a calm, connected (eye and ear on you), willing and soft partner who is eager to join up with you both mentally and physically. Please go back and listen again :) We don't have to introduce anything else when we meet challenges with horses either, as these exercises can get as deep and particular as you feel necessary to help the horse make the emotional break through necessary for them to let their guard down and not only trust you enough to join you in partnership but allow you to guide their feet, movement through clear, loving and fair leadership.
I know you will be able to regain your horses trust, you may have to slow things down and pay more attention to when you are losing them so you can help them back. Helping them back is through clear, empathetic guiding leadership:)
Best to you and keep me posted.
Monday, April 4, 2011
We'll be back with you next week with a new blog video.
We had a wonderful time the last two weekends with the Group Apprenticeship, Level 1, Module 1, and the Getting Started Clinic! It was so exciting to see people make breakthroughs with their horses, and to see such happy people and horses! Yesterday, in day three of the Apprenticeship, everyone was successful with taking a horse through the obstacle course - at liberty in the large arena! It is so exciting to see the great progress people made in three days, understanding more about relating to horses through Caroline's three core awarenesses of Intention, Position and Movement.
Check out our website for upcoming clinics, or host your own clinic with Caroline!
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Round Penning Approach to Independent Horse who isn't interested in joining-up.
Monday, March 21, 2011
Thank You Caroline for a great blog! : ) I have a question about the RP-approach. I have had about 4-5 sessions with each one of my two horses and one of them is responding well and she is connected, soft and very hooked on. The other however is not so enthused, she is a Full blood Arabian mare (7 yrs) and she is a very “independent” horse with a big “personal space” (she does not bite or kick, she is just ears back grumpy) She is seldom nervous or worried so she is not so keen on looking for safety and ease. In the RP she ignores me and when throwing the rope at her she can turn and look at me with an irritated expression that looks like “WHAT do you want!!!???” and then she calmly moves on and often continues ignoring me doing her thing (like eating bark from the RP-fence)
When I stay persistant she will finally show some honest interest in me (but not 100%) Do you have any advice for how to “win over” a more self-confident (and cocky) horse when doing the RP-approach? :)
Monday, March 14, 2011
We were going to shoot a new blog video this weekend, but Erika our video gal has been under the weather with a bad cold/flu bug.
So no blog this week - but stay tuned next week.
In the meantime, we will be posting our four videos from the Harrisburg, PA Horseworld Expo to youtube. So checkout our youtube channel for those: http://www.youtube.com/user/CarolineRider. The first one should be up later today.
Have a great week!
Monday, March 7, 2011
We want to thank you for some of the comments we are getting via youtube and
email. Here is one. Thank you for this comment!
Monday, February 28, 2011
Some of you have been telling us that it is difficult to leave a comment on the blog:
I hope this is helpful:
To leave a comment on our blog:
1. Click on the red "_ comments" link at the bottom of the post.
2. This will open up a new window where it says "Post a Comment" with a box where you can type your comment.
3. Then below the box, it says "Comment as" and asks you to "Select Profile." This means, what type of email address do you want to make a comment as, such as your google account - type in your google username or gmail address, AIM (aol) - type in your aol email address, Open URL think means that you can do other types of email addresses.
4. Press the "Post Comment" button at the bottom of the box where you typed your comment.
Below the comment box, you will also see a link that says: "Subscribe by email." If you do that, it will alert you each time our new blogs come out. Though we do try to get the new blogs out each monday, sometimes our schedules don't allow. So this will alert you when the new blog is up!!
Let us know your comments and ask Caroline your questions for upcoming blog posts!
Monday, February 21, 2011
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Hi Caroline -
I love the blog. Especially the last two installments with Dulce. Perfect for reinforcing my round pen techniques. I just started round pen training with Stormy and Sandman (he is our pony). I wanted to watch the DVDs a few times before I gave it a try. Things are going pretty well.
Here is a question for you.... everyday before I put Stormy's halter on, I go in his stall and pet him on the face and neck and ask him to put his head down. He licks and chews, which I know is good. However, every now and then, while his head is low... the look in his eye will change suddenly and he will go after my shins with his teeth. I always have my dressage whip with me and I shoo him away from my legs without hitting him or going after him aggressively. I just stand my ground and get him out of my space. Do I keep on keeping on? Or is there something else I should try?
My round pen question also has to do with teeth.... but a different energy behind them. It seems that he really wants to play! When I go in his paddock with him and call him over, he approaches with his ears up, I pet him on the face and neck. He is constantly nipping and nibbling at me, like I am another horse and he is trying to play halter-tag. I use my fingers to shoo him out of my space and tell him that teeth are not appropriate no matter what. I am happy that it is not angry energy, but teeth=me getting hurt. How do I cross this hurdle? I don't know how to safely 'play' with him yet and I have a feeling that the 'friendly nibbling' is still a dominant behavior so I have to establish me as the leader before we try to 'play'. What do you suggest?
Talk to you soon,-Karen
That's great, so glad it is helping you:)
Firstly, I never go into my (or any) horse's stall. Out of respect (it's always about space) I wait. I will wait and if they don't greet me, I will ask them over to the door to partner up for the haltering. This is so important as it allows you to gauge, immediately, where your horse is emotionally/mentally - where your join up is or isn't. This becomes part of your (my) pre-flight system to safety too (as it's all about connection and partnership). The round penning approach was created to help you achieve this level of "initiation" where the horse has time to accept and trust you.
Secondly, everything we do is about positive reinforcement. We never address a challenge, issue, head on or directly. Rather we go about identifying the issue at hand and indirectly presenting solutions. Example; my horse won't come to me. Going after him or bribing him with grain/treats AND, a passive side of myself doesn't work (ex: "it's ok sweetie....I'm not going to hurt you"....as you walk timidly and softly....next thing you know, your run over). Before I know it, I've created a "cookie" monster and a horse that doesn't respect me as I am a push over.
Solution: work on the ritual of the relationship, meaning create (like in our round penning) the environment, space that will support your endeavors to make you the "sweet" spot BALANCED with a little TLC. Through my rpenning dvd I talk about what horse's need - love and companionship and leadership. The first two come before the latter. And, the latter is just as important as you won't be able to go anywhere or achieve anything if you, as a leader, do not have clear and direct action/direction. Bottom line, work on asking him into you, like I do with Dulce, allowing him to find joy and comfort when he joins up with you - while calmly, clearly identifying your space.
In regards to being more playful, nipping...in a herd of horses, the lead or more dominant horse will not tolerate another nipping, unless he initiates it and engages in it. You need to be clear at identifying what is acceptable behavior and what isn't. Biting humans is not as we are much weaker and we need to maintain a status where we balance both partnership and leadership. This is how they relate naturally. In regards to understanding horse behavior, the more we understand what is innate, and natural to our equine friends - where we have the "right" to take charge and control, and where we belong in this relationship, the easier, safer and more enjoyable our friendship becomes and the more confident we are about reading and understanding the dynamic we share with them.
Again, it's all about sharing and taking space and when you have a dominant/alpha personality like Stormy's he is going to want to engage with you on his terms and this can be dangerous. This is where you can stay mentally and physically engaged with him but remind him where he belongs and all that means is that you are in charge of your space...use a carriage whip to help or lead line to reinforce your boundaries. Watching, listening to him and keeping the lines of communication open are key here as you are walking a fine line between bringing out both confident and un-confident behavior. Too much or too little can make or break it.
Have fun playing! And, please keep me posted!
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Monday, January 17, 2011
You can ask Caroline your questions here by leaving a comment to this blog
post, or send questions to us at info@RiderHorsemanship.com.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Monday, January 3, 2011
Hope all is well!
Happy New Year!
This is typical behavior for more dominant horses. Asking them to respect your space puts you in the "driver's" seat or position of power. Naturally, they will challenge that. I'd like to start off with my round penning (rp) approach first for acceptance and trust before I get into specific techniques that will help. The round penning allows you to establish both partnership and leadership. This is most important to our way of training as we want the horse to want to be with us, choosing to partner while accepting our leadership. In the end, the answer is "intention." You will learn the power of it through our rp approach. The power comes with careful observation, identifying and reading our horses so that we can "match" intention. Matching intention follows the mind, heart and body of a horse. Example, some horses may be moving quickly but their mind is soft and relaxed. Some may not move, with their feet planted, not scared of anything yet difficult to motivate.
This is most challenging as everyone's perspective is unique to themselves. I don't feel comfortable asking you to come on stronger as I don't know the dynamic between you. She may feel misunderstood, confused and if so, that is how she is going to respond and let you know. You would be surprised how much a horse can "change" when understood. Stronger personalities just can't take too much either. They are very assertive. That is why I don't like to label horses, dominant, passive.
As I mention briefly in Leading, Part I, you can get stronger with your rhythmic energy and move into your horse if necessary. Don't get stuck trying to achieve the desired goal of backing your horse up right now. I would practice moving the shoulder. Accept the slightest try and reward. I would love to show how we would match our horse's intent but we don't have any horses here that will challenge us that way.
Thanks and I hope to see you again in the New Year!