It is fantastic that people want to get out and do things with their horses. But going to many different clinics (clinic surfing) is not necessarily the way to go.
We come across people who have attended clinics with many reputable clinicians, but we can see they have no direction or have lost direction due to conflicting techniques or misunderstanding the process.
Quite often the purpose or aim of the exercises taught is not thoroughly explained or understood.
The other issue is that people are not able to absorb all of the information that is being given to them. Due to this lack of retention, when people go home and try to put exercises into practice, they can get it wrong and as a result they teach the horse the wrong thing.
The old adage – too much information can be dangerous. We go on about Foundation all the time – but it is so important that you don’t move on to some exercises until you have that solid foundation in place. It is great to know what you are working towards, but needs to be done incrementally in the correct order.
The good news is…. most clinicians are on a similar path, similar techniques with a view to achieving great outcomes.
Most aim to progress peoples horsemanship by creating and building a solid foundation. We have had many people coming to us on a regular basis and are we are seeing fantastic improvements in their understanding of how a horse thinks and moves resulting in good horsemanship skills and improving their relationships with their horses.
All clinicians should explain the reason and purpose of the exercises and ensure they are thoroughly explained. There are core exercises that if understood and practiced “correctly” will solve 90% of problems with horses.
Again, it is wonderful people are wanting to get out and do things with their horse, but getting that strong foundation in place is so important. So many go to Barrel racing, roping or other specific training clinics before establishing a good foundation, and things sometimes go pear shape! The horse gets confused and can ultimately go backwards in their training – people wonder why.
**** It always comes back to the foundation ****
So instead of jumping from clinic to clinic, find a good foundation training program understand it and stick to it. Once the trust and partnership is solid, you can go on to whatever specialty training you like, but always check your foundation, make sure there are no gaps, if you find one, fix it.
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