After a bit of a rough ride on Sam today: here are my tips on training a horse.
1. Be Stubborn
I will say this might be the most important item on this list. Most of training a horse is not letting them win when they don’t want to do something. Most recently I’ve been working with a horse that throws temper tantrums when he doesn’t want to do something. The best way I’ve found to deal with this is to not let him get away with it. If he decides to be an ass, I’ll just make him work harder. You are the Alpha mare.
2. Never let them see your fear
While, I would hope horse back riding isn’t something that causes you fear, when it does scare you, try not to let them see that. Horses can sense when somethings up, but the faster you can get yourself back under control the sooner you’ll be back to a reasonable ride.
3. Know when to quit
This was something I had an issue with as a kid. I used to set unrealistic goals for when I said enough was a enough. The most important aspect of this is: end on a good note. Don’t push them too far outside their comfort zone. If you get what you’re asking for, don’t ask for more.
4. Never train with a time limit
If you have a time limit, you may be forced to end on a bad note where your horse thinks he’s gotten out of whatever he didn’t want to do. Always make sure you have enough time to ride even if things don’t go as planned.
(Johnny is just finally starting to grow a booty!)
5. Be safe
Wear a helmet when you’re training horses. I even wear a jumping vest when I’m working with Sam and I don’t get on him without having experienced horse people around.