If you have not read The Songs of the Horses by Paul Belasik I would like to recommend it. I have found this book to be one of my favorite books on the subject of developing horsemanship skills through the original and organic experience. I would also like to recommend a book by Jenny Rolfe, Ride from the Heart. Her subject is classical training and riding as well as dressage. I have not read the whole book yet but what I have read has been very moving and important to developing the awareness and attitude needed for the optimal relationship between a human and a horse. Jenny wrote a whole chapter on breathing. I am in the stage of carrying her book with me in hopes of having a moment I can read some more pages. As my Inner Circle group is moving on towards the last Waterhole Ritual, Dancing with your Horse (Go Trot and Come Up), I want to offer some support that I think will help everyone that is working on this Ritual or will be soon.
You are ready to start with this ritual when your horse has a strong magnetic connection with you in the Companion Walking Ritual. If the Magnetic Connect can not be achieved with the first five Rituals you can then choose to move on and see if the last Ritual will create the Magnetic Connection from the playful interactions that occur in this last Ritual. You do have to be careful to balance the last two Rituals by choosing how much to work on either ritual. What usually happens is that the practice of companion walking will remove the desire for Dancing with your Horse and too much Dancing will remove the Magnetic Connection needed for Companion Walking. But if your horse does not have the Magnetic Connection you can use the last ritual to jump-start it. If it doesn’t work in a day or so, then you will have to go back to build it for the first five Heartfelt Strings of Connection. From the skill you build alone from the practice of the last ritual, it can cause you to use the other rituals more effectively and be able to gain the magnetic connection that may be missing in some horse human relationships.
The way to train your horse to leave you at a moments notice with a burst of speed is achieved by developing your horse’s speed in graduated stages. First what you do is drive the horse away with the energy that will create a walk then continue to drive your horse away until he or she transitions into trot. As soon as your horse picks up speed, stop your pursuit for a moment and then continue to pursue your horse to keep your horse motivated to stay in an active trot.
Begin with the reciprocal movements used in the first ritual Sharing Territory which focuses your horse on reconnecting to his herding instincts. Herding instincts of horses are to leave anything that is coming toward them and to follow anything that is leaving. As you begin the make the request that your horse leave you, make sure that you have disconnected energetically from the horse you are working with and avoid surprising the horse with your request. This will keep the magnetic connection in place. As soon as the horse moves away from you…immediately move away from him. This will let the horse know that moving away stops your pursuit. Once the horse understands this you then can go back to pursuing him for the speed you will need energetically to bring him back to you when you move into the draw. Doing this begins to create the draw necessary for the “Dance at Liberty” Repeat till he starts to respond automatically to the leave and draw response.
You will increase and build your horses speed gradually. You can also use a round pen with this ritual easily without a horse feeling intimidated because of the bond you have built. For some horses, you might need to use the round pen to be able to encourage speed while he is traveling. Because of the closeness the round pen gives, you are able to influence the forward energy of your horse more easily then you would at liberty. Using a round pen at this stage of the relationship the horse will not feel intimidated by working with you in it. If the horse does not like the round pen then you can choose a different approach and stay at liberty. All horses are different. Some horses actually love the round pen if they have a great connection with you through the 7 heartfelt strings of connection.
If the bond is strong, you will not lose the trust you have built. Praise and train your horse in short requests for speed with lots of tonality in your voice; pauses with scratches and some carrots or whatever you know in you heart and logic would work. The rituals that can support you on sending your horse away are “Taking Territory, Sharing Territory using Reciprocal Movements, Leading From Behind, and Head up and Head Down.” To encourage the draw you would tighten all the Heartfelt Strings of Connection to wake up the magnetic connection that you have developed from your friendship and respect you have gained. A lot of companion walking also helps to enhance your horse’s response to call him back to you through your voice at the same time as you back up to create a draw that will bring your horse back.
The way you call your horse back to you happens when you stop your driving request and at the moment your horse looks at you and is headed back in your direction you draw back quickly and call him to you in a tone that is inviting. Your horse will pick this up easily. If it takes you more time, the secret is to focus on the gas pedal. By getting a big response from your horse leaving you, this energy will oddly cause your horse to return to you with more speed as well. These Rituals take a lot of horsemanship skill and can be difficult for a person to learn on their own. If you are in this category stay with the rituals where you are getting great results and in time you will advance your ability to work with a horse on sending and drawing. You can also choose to take my private workshops and clinics. They can be arranged for you and a friend as well.
If you would like to take my 'Self-Realization through the Waterhole Rituals' Program to find your authentic self, there is still space available at the moment. I'll have some more information for you on this shortly but in the meantime, I can tell you the dates are Sept. 5-15 and the Program will take place at my ranch here in Escondido, California. If you'd like to book your place now ahead of official release, please go to Training as soon as possible.
Speak to you on Thursday!