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The Not-So-Scientific Training Challenge

If you have spent any time trying to train horses to accomplish physical goals, like moving more athletically, chances are good you have discovered that some individuals are more willing than others. Much as I would like to offer science-based explanations for this, I believe a lot of it owes to a less scientific trait that we’ll call ‘personal space.’ During recent clinic observations, I heard author and trainer Mary Wanless use this term to refer to a horse that was tickly in his back muscles. This made it difficult for his rider to help him travel with his back Read the full article…

Filed Under: Uncategorized, Thinking Out Loud, Horse Training & Exercises | Tags: , ,

Articles from the Canada Horse Journal

The editor of the Canada Horse Journal sent me these pdf files of articles I wrote last year. So I thought you’d enjoy reading them! Just click on each image below.  

Filed Under: Articles |

Help, my Horse is Stumbling!

Help, my Horse is Stumbling! The most obvious place to look when a horse begins to stumble regularly is his feet because they are after all what he is tripping over, right? While he might be stubbing them, his toes are infrequently the source of this problem. In fact, a tripping problem that shows up acutely often has nothing to do with his feet. Before you call your farrier, rule out faulty mechanics in the rest of the body. Tripping and stumbling often develops from poor movement patterns that restrict the front limbs, progressing sometimes to the extent that a horse Read the full article…

Filed Under: Horse Training & Exercises, Horse Care & Upkeep | Tags: , ,

Round Pens: training for good posture…or bad?

Believe me when I tell you that I love freedom as much as anyone. I love trimming away boundaries, living widely in each moment. And, yes, I love to watch a beautiful horse running free across a meadow with his legs surging and his expression content. That, to me, is a wonderful sight. On the other hand, a horse careening around a round pen with his neck twisted sideways and his body misaligned disgruntles me. The reason it disgruntles me is that this practice forms—and strengthens—poor movement mechanics that can have pretty significant consequences. Primarily, when a horse travels around Read the full article…

Filed Under: Uncategorized, Horse Training & Exercises, Horse Care & Upkeep | Tags: , , ,

Single Sport vs. Cross-Training

Why DO we Cross-Train? The search for mastery brings with it the question of specificity. If you are trying to master a particular sport, should you focus on and practice that sport exclusively? Or might cross-training, and using tools from outside that sport, benefit you in some way? Certainly, there is a lot to argue in favor of practicing only your sport in order to get better at it. From a physiological standpoint, there is even more to argue for multi-disciplinary training. Most simply, cross-training allows you more tools to accomplish the job. And isn’t it always better to have Read the full article…

Filed Under: Horse Health & Fitness, Classical Dressage | Tags: , ,