[youtube]zOBaFNdWG_U[/youtube] Such a lesson to be learned here in training your horse using the Waterhole Rituals. If you keep driving your horse away, eventually he will not come back. While playing with your horse at Liberty one must pick a play interaction that would develop the training of the horse rather than making a brat out of him; becoming too out of hand or turning him into a bully. Remember, you are responsible for your horse's behavior.
Discovering this, through experiencing it yourself, develops your skill as a horse communicator and evolves your understanding of nature and an awareness of how your horse sees you.
The Bond Between You and Your Horse:
I see how truly and deeply some people want to feel a bond with their horse and they are analytically trying to figure out how, but the emotional aspect is somehow disconnected. When we think of a bond I also see that most people have no idea how to bond with a horse. Many times I see that a horse feels a special bond with their owner, but their owner is not even aware of, or sees, how their horse is feeling. The opposite of this is that the person, because they are having a wonderful time, calls it a bond when the horse wouldn't feel that way at all.
A bond is a two way relationship, horse to human and huaman to horse. If this bond is not strong in the moment, a horse will not work with you at Liberty. What I mean by Liberty is that you are following the rule that if your horse leaves you that you do not drive him away or punish him for leaving and that you will quit your pursuit of him and give him his freedom. In some moments the bond will be stronger and other times weaker. When using a whip, as a tool in your tool box, you want to use it when the bond is felt strongly between you. I advise you not to use a whip when the bond is not strong and use your body language instead.
I lead people to be self empowered and evolve their self realization skills by showing them how to work with their horse at Liberty. We do not train our horses without building a direct connection, like you would have with a family member. If you can not see your horse as a family member, your approach in the training of your horse would be different and the bond would not be built on a true relationship. I feel training without the bond is a waste of time because anything else would not be a real exchange between horse and human.
Using a Whip as an Aid:
In my Method, a whip is not to be used as an punitive instrument. It is to be used as a communication aid for direction and speed. If your horse is afraid of a whip then desensitize him to it. However, don't desensitize him so much that he would either lose intrest in it or not pay attention to it. We NEVER hit the horse with the whip!
Aids should be given very precisely, within the rhythm of the horse's movements. That means only in the moments that you have a horse’s attention and that the horse is in a willing frame of mind and feels a bond with you. To use a whip properly you must have your full attention on what you are doing and be able to see how your horse is feeling about your use of the whip.
With every exercise and play activity you do, critical thinking will help you to influence on your horse more effectively. Too much send away and your horse will think you want him to stay away; too much speed will make your horse nervous; too much allowance will cause your horse to take over your leadership, because in the horse's world if a horse stops leading, another horse will naturally take the lead position.
If it does not feel natural to use a whip, do not use one. Because if you do not feel comfortable about it, your timimg will be off and you will lose the good relationship that you may already have with your horse. If you really feel as if you want to have a whip with you, but you are not comfortable with using it or how to use it proficiently, here is an exercise for you to work on. Please work on this exercise when your horse is not around. You can practice this from a soft swish sound, to a light snap, all the way up to a loud crack. But work on the softness first.
After you see this video on how to use a lunge whip try moving flowers on the ground, without moving them far and without hurting the petals. You can also practice this to music and move the flowers around to the beat and this will also help your timing. Remember we are not going to touch the horse with the whip. This is just an exercise in moving flowers so you can operate the whip in the direction of the horse effectively.
Whatever you do with your horse, keep seeing that you need to improve your horsemanship skills. This way you will stay humble enough for your horse while exercising your leadership. This humility will help the bond between you and your horse. Plus you will always be open to learning more, with your head and your heart. This will improve your horsemanship skills so you can be a better partner with your horse.
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