Training horses ares rarely a walk in the park. In fact, becoming a seasoned horse trainer requires many hours of practice and application, and much of money for clinics and courses in horse training. Yet, not everyone has the desire to become a professional trainer nor the money and time to enroll in many horse training events for weeks or even months of learning.
Horse training videos will allow you to study the inner workings of different horse trainer.
Horse training videos should provide a compressed source of knowledge of horses and training. Although, clinics and such provide the benefit of being able to get questions answered and having an instructor guide you through the exercises, videos give you the advantage of being able to rewind or stop when you need to. Most of the time the techniques being taught by the videos are effective, so you don’t need to resort to trial and error in learning how to train your horse. And all the learning can be done in the comfort of your own home.
At Your Learning Level
Training videos also enable you to learn training methods and caring for your horse at your pace. You don’t need to adapt to a rigid schedule that clinics may have to enforce. You can learn new skills while you go on with your life, your job, or other priorities. These videos are great for people who want to learn more about horses and training but only a few minutes each day in which to fit learning into their daily schedules.
If you own the videos, you have the luxury of playing the videos over and over again until you have fully grasped the topics covered. But don’t underestimate the value of borrowing videos as well.
Perhaps one of the most difficult hurdles inherent in promoting the Imagine a Horse training program is the use of the word tricks when used to describe some of the behaviors we seek to accomplish. There is a very real segment of the present day horse culture that recoils from even the thought of including anything outside the mainstream in their chosen field of endeavor. When I was growing up in the Midwest in the 1950′s and 60′s trick horses were quite popular. Mr. Ed was a wildly popular TV show and the comedy movies about Francis The Talking Mule were a recent memory. There was not a Saturday afternoon cowboy matinee that did not include an equine co-star that often was as popular (or more so) than the cowboy hero. Roy Rogers’ horse Trigger and Gene Autry’s Champion are probably the two most well remembered equine stars of both TV and movies. Trigger was often billed as, “the smartest horse in the world”.
Now this is quite a title to have to live up to, but the horse along with some clever off-screen coaching by Glenn Randall his trainer, always did his part to not only save the day for Roy but also to provide a little comic relief now and then. Educated horse lovers in the 21st century tend to admire the horse’s contribution to our culture not as a comedian but more as sentient and near equal companion in sport and in the field who though mute is eloquent in his own ways.
Imagine a Horse was created to address this very real concept from the very beginning. We see it happening all the time, clinicians and trainers from in other more traditional disciplines trying to capitalize on the newly rekindled interest in trick training. Just open any equine magazine and carefully examine advertisements and articles and you will see trick horses being used to generate in interest a product line or a training program that has become passé with over exposure and over hyped marketing. There is nothing inherently wrong with this, but it is easy to see through. In doing so the common denominator gets lowered and the public is once again exposed to horses being used as mere objects and all too often as the butt of a poorly conceived joke or comedic skit.
I have taken my cue from Alios Podhajsky, the past director of the Spanish Riding School whose motto was, “The goal of all training is to make the horse more beautiful”. While beauty on the surface is in the eye of the beholder, real equine beauty is the totality of the experience and it is not limited to being merely skin deep. A beautiful horse is an obedient horse; one who obeys commands generously while also displaying his own inner spark of joy. A beautiful horse is an intelligent horse; one who obviously displays an inner sense of not only cooperation but also of inspiration.
It is only at Liberty that a horse is a horse. There is an old saying that states, “A rider without a horse will only be a man, but a horse without a rider will always be a noble creature”.
The question is, how do we as trainers bring forth inspiration not only from our horses but also how to share it with them. In the beginning, give the horse his Liberty and then use training strategies that are calculated obtain obedience as well as willing submission and that enhance the horse’s potential for understanding the discipline you have chosen.
In this world there are very few absolutes and so it is with a certain amount of trepidation I am going to offer this blanket statement of fact. Horses can without any doubt learn to understand spoken (and unspoken) human (body) language to a degree seldom recognized IF they are systematically taught to relate or associate certain words and gestures with specific objects, situations and behaviors. One of the essential elements of trick training is the use of stage props.
This may be something as simple as a pedestal or as sophisticated as a 21st century whip. Now it is easy for the uninitiated to understand that a pedestal is a simple prop but how, you might ask, can a whip be considered sophisticated. A whip derives its sophistication from not only the hand and mind that guides it but also its design and the craftsmanship that went into its manufacture.
All whips are not created equal, but if you were to visit any tack store and examine the selection you would tend to disagree with me. I have spent the last five years developing a selection of whips that allow me the freedom of expression to truly communicate with horses in a language they readily understand. When you wish to effectively communicate with a horse there is a triad of techniques, each accentuating and reinforcing the other, that are necessary to achieve a high level of compliance and understanding. The elements of this triad are: your proximity to the horse, the vocal cue and the tactile cue. If you add to this a few well-chosen stage props that are crafted in a way as to be horse friendly, then you are well on the path towards being able to gain a high level of cooperation and compliance from a horse that is gaining useful intelligence with each new lesson.
This is why I use a training approach that appears on the surface to be based on teaching tricks very early in a horse’s life. The stage props and the small schooling area give the young horse a chance to focus and not be distracted by wide open spaces and other horses not immediately involved in the lesson plan. Additionally the whips and techniques with which they are used are so uniquely different than anything ever conceived of in the history of horse training is what makes the Imagine a Horse method work so well. Interest in trick training is without a doubt on the rise, although it now often appears under a different banner and goes by other names and typically is disguised as something more readily palatable by a modern audience. “That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet” are the immortal words of Shakespeare in Romeo and Juliet . I’ll venture that he never thought they would apply to horse training in the 21st century.
My name is Dwayne Steves and I am a non-professional horse trainer from Colorado. Animals, and in particular horses are a real passion for me.Like I always say, Horses are like people; only better.