Are You Training or Just Managing? By Don Jessop

Are You Training or Just Managing? By Don Jessop

December 18, 2018 2 Comments

So you can ride, so you can keep your horse from running over you, so you can lead a horse... can you actually train? What's the difference you might ask...

A good manager gets through a scary situation unscathed. A good trainer, on the other hand, goes back to that scary situation, on purpose, over and over, until the horse learns to manage himself in that situation.

If you meet me and ask me to work with your horse, I might say, I can do what you can't do with your horse. But that doesn't mean much. All that means is that I'm a better manager of your horse than you are. But that doesn't mean that your horse is any better for the experience. It's not until I begin actually training your horse, or you begin to train your horse to do that thing consistently, that you can honestly say you are a trainer and your horse has been "trained." Does that make sense?

So what I want to ask next is this: Can you think of an area of your horsemanship, a particular task or challenge, that persists and still exists? And will you ask yourself... "Am I training my horse, or just trying to get through it, or worse, avoiding it?"

I'm not suggesting that managing is bad. In fact, much of the Horse Mastery program is about teaching you to be a better manager, so you can handle new situations. But then... once you can manage challenging situations, I personally challenge you to go back to that same situation and teach your horse to manage himself or herself.

Keep in mind, the path to mastery is in fact, not that complicated. You can do this. You can keep it this simple. The techniques you need will emerge. Join the Horse Mastery Group and learn everything you need at a technical level and combined with your desire to improve, and to help your horse improve, the world will be your oyster.

Check out the group and contact me asap if you want to join

https://masteryhorsemanship.com/pages/horse-mastery-group



2 Responses

Don Jessop
Don Jessop

November 05, 2019

Hi and thank you so much for your comments and questions on our blog posts. It means a lot that you continue to read and enjoy our material. We truly do care about your experience and we love your feedback!

Your question about your horse is a good one. Yes, horses get very sick of lunging. In fact they see no value in it unless we give them a reward for doing it or a consequence for not doing it. If you really need to lunge him, for safety before you ride, you can continue to ask him to go out and carry the saddle or burn off steam. But if you don’t need to lunge him and you only want to do circles as a way to connect and enjoy playing with him, consider watching this video about liberty. It might inspire you on how to connect and play on the ground.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AV7TOPCpElY

Stella
Stella

November 05, 2019

My 16.3 irish sports horse…beautiful dark bay….is started to turn in on me (hes very gentle) this is not agressive in any way he just stops when i Ask him to lunge…he might do half a circle and then stops and turns in to face me….he then continues to turn in everey time i try to ask himnforward…to the point we are turning on each other in the tightest position (scary too really his size) He objects if i persist so ive stopped. So now i have a situation where i cannot seem to lunge him. Previously he would go round like a dream. its as if hes saying…..i no longer need to do this…and looks at me gently. he can get cross if i persist….but the situation remains. he will run along side me around the arena stop when i stop, looks and listens to me very carefully…..
so what is happening….can a horse say actually this is not necessary!…..hes slightly lame but not totally he was off for a year…..but fine now deemed fit by the vet…..i just wonder if he finds the lunge circle uncomfortable…

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