Why do riders fall?

What causes a rider to make an unscheduled departure from the back of a horse?. The focus is on those times when rider looses her or his seat with little or no help from the horse, not situations involving bee stung horses or times when equipment has failed or when the horse has fallen also. […]

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Why wait for balance?

For horses balance is essential for survival. A horse in the wild that lacks balance will be one of the first to be killed. So, lack of balance can create fear and the responses that go along with it. So, to avoid those fear responses such as bucking, bolting, balking, etc. we must slow down […]

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The Secret Cure for the Sour School Horse

To avoid the sour school horse, several aspects of the horse must be considered. These are: The psychological horse – his mental state. The horse’s environment – where he lives and works and what he wears. The physical horse – his health and comfort. THE MENTAL HORSE This is where you can really save the […]

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The Litigation-Resistant Instructor

What makes an instructor of beginning students really good? Her winning personality? How soon she gets her students jumping, running barrels, or out on the trail? Is it the fact that she has a clean safety record (no serious accidents), or that the advanced instructors and coaches love getting students from her because they have […]

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The Riding Instructor

What makes an instructor of beginning students really good? Her winning personality? How soon she gets her students jumping, running barrels, or out on the trail? Is it the fact that she has a clean safety record (no serious accidents), or that the advanced instructors and coaches love getting students from her because they have […]

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The Goal of a Lesson

When we walk into the arena do we always know what we want to have accomplished by the time we walk out? This is a critical question, one that is easy for the well prepared, professional instructor to answer but difficult for the instructor who is flying blindly. If the instructor has taken the time […]

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The Expectation of Safety v. The Perception of Safety

The expectation of safety is what parents and others expect or believe they are due in a given situation. You cannot control this. The expectation of safety is lowest when a friend with a horse is teaching riding to another friend for free. It goes up a little when a nominal fee is charged. The […]

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Teaching Beginners to Ride

Among the problems demonstrated by the vast majority of beginning riders are the two most common reflexes: when something goes wrong beginning or novice riders seek a version of the fetal position, hands in their lap, hunched over the pommel, legs in the flanks, or when the horse moves suddenly and unexpectedly jerking the beginner’s […]

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Taking Pride in Beginners

It is always disappointing to hear the following sentence: He or I only teach beginners. It is just as disappointing to hear a horse dismissed as being “only a beginner horse.” The latter usually means that the beginner riders have been allowed to mangle any training the horse ever had. Anyone who has been in […]

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Safety – The Nature of the Horse

All too often at riding schools and trail ride establishments, the first lesson or pre-ride instruction is under-utilized or completely wasted from a safety perspective. The first lesson, or pre-ride instruction, even with advanced students or riders, is the best opportunity to frame all the instruction that follows in terms of safety in a way […]

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