7 Clinics with Buck Brannaman Now Streaming

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Just in time for holiday-movie-watching with your family! TSB is excited to announce that 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN, the Telly-Award-Winning educational video series from filmmaker Cindy Meehl, director of the documentary BUCK, is now available to stream from HorseandRiderBooks.com.

“The biggest challenge in creating the documentary BUCK was taking over 300 hours of footage and cutting it down to 88 minutes,” says Cindy. “We still hear audiences saying they didn’t want the film to end — they want more Buck!”

The valuable but unused footage shot during the making of BUCK was carefully curated to create 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN  a series of seven videos featuring over 10 hours of instruction.

In videos 1 and 2, viewers travel to several Buck Brannaman clinics to learn important groundwork techniques, including: hooking on, leading, halter work, bridling, saddling, backing up, working in circles and half-circles, using the flag, and firming up.

In videos 3 and 4, viewers learn some of Buck’s most important lessons when working under saddle, including the all-important release, which teaches a soft feel and allows the horse to attain collection and willingly move off the leg. Additional instruction covers rider form and position, riding serpentines, “getting the life up” (finding animation), perfecting the stop, and backing up.

In videos 5, 6, and 7, Buck shares more lessons on horseback — such as turn-on-the-haunches, transitions, jumping, and finding the feel — as well as ways to solve problems, including crowding, biting, striking, fidgeting, rushing, anxiousness and sensitivity, and bad attitudes. The series ends with Buck’s best advice, tips, and ideas about working with, riding, and training horses — sage knowledge imparted with the dry wit that the world has come to expect of one of the finest horsemen of our time.

All 10 hours of programming are available to stream as individual programs or a complete series, only from HorseandRiderBooks.com.

CLICK HERE for more information or to order.

Happy Holidays!

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of equestrian books and videos, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

The 20 Best Quotes from Buck Brannaman

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We at TSB are very honored to have been part of the team that brought the 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD SET to life. Together with Director Cindy Meehl and Cedar Creek Productions, we immersed ourselves in this remarkable horseman’s world of working with horses and the people who want to be with them. Along the way, you can’t help but notice what a fine orator Brannaman is, and when you randomly pull snippets from his lessons, you find that every thought, even shared in a different venue, in a different state, at a different time, with different students, flows seamlessly into his overarching message. Here, then, find 20 of Buck Brannaman’s best quotes. When you’ve read them all, don’t be surprised if you feel like you learned a little something. Even after hearing them and reading them again and again, we still do.

 

“The essence of preparation is to position your horse to where the one thing that he’s most likely to do is exactly what you had in mind…which makes it a perfect time to ask him.”

2  “The horse needs to respect you, but sometimes people confuse respect and fear. And they’re not the same at all.”

3  “Make sure that every time you take a hold of the horse, you have a point; you have a legitimate reason for doing it rather than it just being accidental or you not being aware.”

4  “When riding, ask yourself, ‘What will my horse get out of this if I get what I want?’ Many times, human nature is to take and to not give anything back.“

5  “It’s just like learning how to dance with another human being. You might think you’re really getting something done when you’ve both mastered the hokey-pokey, but depending on how much you want to dance and your passion for dancing, you’re probably going to work your way through the hokey-pokey and move on to something else.”

6  “I don’t believe in waiting for a horse to do the wrong thing and then punishing him after the fact. You can’t just say ‘No’ to a horse. You have to redirect a negative behavior with a positive one—something that works for both of you. It’s as though you’re saying, ‘Instead of doing that, we can do this…together.’”

7  “Fear has to do with helplessness. The only thing that conquers it is knowledge. When you learn about how a horse thinks and makes decisions, that helplessness goes away.”

8  “I’m just trying to get people to understand horses. You have to be consistent and logical, use your brain, and not be emotional and not lose your temper.”

9  “Feel for the horse. I can’t stress how important this is.”

10  “Respect the fact that he’s thinking, that he’s searching… if he ever found that out about you, he wouldn’t dream of bucking you off.”

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11  “You can be a leader without being intimidating. The horse can be your partner without being your slave. I’m trying to keep the best part of the horse in there. I’m not trying to take anything away from him.”

12  “The horse isn’t so different from us. In order to learn, you have to make mistakes. Then you recalibrate, make a decision, try something different, and try again.”

13  “To me, there’s nothing more beautiful than seeing a horse think…and someone allowing a horse to think.”

14  “The idea with a horse is when you see things going in the wrong direction, then you redirect his mind. You don’t wait for him to get into trouble…you try to keep him out of trouble.”

15  “A lot of people, they want it all to be fuzzy and warm and cosmic, but it’s no different with a horse than with a kid…You can’t always be the kid’s best friend. First you have to be the parent.”

16  “You can be strict, but that doesn’t mean you have to be unfair.”

17  “The horse responds to comfort, they respond to peace better than about anything else you could do. So if the horse responds to you and you give him a little peace and comfort that means more to him than anything.”

18  “Where you end up your ride on a horse is so important. It’s a little bit like when you were young and you were dating—that last two minutes of the date can be a real deal breaker. With these horses it’s the same thing…You got to quit on a good note.”

19  “I’ve always wanted to do the right thing by a horse, that’s never changed, its just that as my knowledge grew I’ve been able to offer the horse a better human being.”

20  “I’m still on the move, I’m getting better because I’m still studying. I still want to be a better horseman.”

7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN is available from the TSB online bookstore, where shipping in the US is FREE.

CLICK HERE to order now.

 

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of equestrian books and DVDs, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

TSB’s Top 5 Ways You Know You’ve Truly Connected with Your Horse

We all crave that special connection with our horses.

We all crave that special connection with our horses.

 

We all crave “connection” with our horses—you know, that special “something” that made The Black follow Alec Ramsay off the island and swim out to the ship that would “rescue” them both from the lonely beach that had borne their friendship. Perhaps you spend hours trailing your horse around his pasture. Maybe at night you fluff up the shavings in the back of the stall and make a pillow for your head (you figure you need to be up early to feed anyway).

Our best horsemen give us some rather more practical tools that really can help us attain this dream. And how do you know when you’ve done it? Here are 5 ways TSB authors say you can tell you’ve truly connected with your horse.

 

1  It takes the slightest shift of your weight in the saddle, or the most subtle variation of thought to get your horse to move his hind feet wherever you want them. 

In the DVD series 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN we see the very best example of this, demonstrated by Buck in front of a group of clinic attendees. “It’s not about training a horse,” says Buck. “It’s about getting a horse with you. It’s about becoming one mind and one body.”

 

2  You can ride “by the tips of your fingers.”

In THE ALCHEMY OF LIGHTNESS, authors Dominique Barbier and Dr. Maria Katsamanis say that when true “lightness” is achieved, the horse moves as if on his own, without the rider interfering. “I use the idea of holding the reins only with the ‘tips of the fingers’ because it makes it impossible for the rider to be strong, to pull, or to force,” they write. “Holding the reins, like they are ‘dirty,’ like something we do not want to touch…The reins should be something we don’t want to touch unless we have to….If we ride the horse lightly, he will be light with us—as light as we want him.”

 

3  You can just “be still” around each other.

In her new book 3-MINUTE HORSEMANSHIP, author Vanessa Bee says,”Horses seek quiet thoughtful people…Most of us are so busy planning the future we don’t give the horse our undivided attention…Just ‘being’ with a horse can be very relaxing and enjoyable.”

 

4  When you walk away, your horse follows you.

In the wonderful introduction to natural horsemanship for kids HOW TO SPEAK HORSE, authors Andrea and Markus Eschbach explain that through basic groundwork, you can teach your horse to understand that when your back turns toward him, it means you want him to follow you. “When the horse chooses to come to you at your invitation,” they say,”he has accepted you as his leader…You will realize how much fun it is to play with and train your horse as the invisible connection of your partnership becomes stronger and stronger.”

 

5  You sense how your horse is feeling—you just “know” what he needs or wants.

In BUILDING A LIFE TOGETHER—YOU AND YOUR HORSE, Frederic Pignon and Magali Delgado talk about how in the company of horses, we learn to listen to our intuition because our intellect and human experience do not always supply the answers. “When Templado [the famous white stallion, seen by millions of people in the hit show Cavalia] was near the end of his life, Magali and I both had the strongest feeling on the same evening that we should bring him home,” says Frederic. “As soon as he got into his stall, he began to recover his energy and his love of life. I know we were right in what we did.”

 

Find books and DVDs with the best ways to find the connection you want with your horse at the TSB online bookstore, where shipping in the US is FREE.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT OUR STORE

Equestrian Nation Premieres New Three-Part Series About Buck Brannaman on RFD-TV

Watch Buck Brannaman on RFD-TV for the first time ever!

Watch Buck Brannaman on RFD-TV for the first time ever!

 

TSB is excited to catch the new three-part series about Buck Brannaman on Equestrian Nation, the popular news-magazine-style show, featuring stories about everything horse-related, from different breeds, horsemen, and riding disciplines, to veterinary information, and training and management tips. Equestrian Nation’s exclusive interview will be Buck’s first ever appearance on RFD-TV–the nation’s first 24-hour television network dedicated to serving the needs and interests of rural America with programming focused on agriculture, equine-related topics, and the rural lifestyle, along with traditional country music and entertainment.

 

 

“The three part series is about getting to know who influenced Buck and his opinions on horses and life,” says Dan Weyand, Executive Producer of Equestrian Nation. “This is an in-depth interview where you really get to know him personally. Our production crew traveled to his ranch in Sheridan, Wyoming. We then caught up with him at a clinic in Colorado to finish filming the series.”

Part One of Equestrian Nation’s Buck Brannaman series premiers Wednesday, April 2, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. PDT, with Parts Two and Three airing at the same time April 9 and April 16. Viewers can also watch repeats of each episode following the premiere: Check the RFD-TV schedule for when Equestrian Nation is on in your time zone.

 

You can learn the best of Buck’s horse wisdom shared at seven different clinic locations in the acclaimed 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD series, available from the TSB online bookstore, where shipping in the US is FREE.

CLICK HERE for more information about the 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD series.

CLICK HERE to order the DVDs now.

 

CLICK THE IMAGE to find out more about Buck Brannaman DVDs.

CLICK THE IMAGE to find out more about Buck Brannaman DVDs.

 

 

 

 

Florida’s Favorite Equestrian Magazine Features Cindy Meehl and 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN in April Issue

Check out the feature about Cindy Meehl and 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN in the April issue of Sidelines Magazine

Check out the feature about Cindy Meehl and 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN in the April issue of Sidelines Magazine

 

 

Don’t miss “Follow Your Heart, Wherever It Leads,” the feature story in the April issue of the popular Wellington-based equestrian magazine Sidelines. Writer Kayla Starnes details the story behind how BUCK the award-winning documentary came to be made, and how 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN, the seven-disc instructional series, was the follow-up director Cindy Meehl knew had to be made.

“This, to me, is the way training should be done,” Cindy says about 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN in the article. “What I put in 7 CLINICS, I believe, will astound people with the results they will get. I don’t care what type of riding you do, Buck’s tools can take you much farther than you ever dreamed.”

Pick up a copy of the April issue!

Pick up a copy of the April issue!

Cindy also shares a little about her current projects, including the forthcoming documentaries Unbranded (about four young men riding mustangs from Mexico to Canada) and Dogs on the Inside (about stray dogs that are retrained for adoption by inmates). Pick up your copy of Sidelines (you can order the issue online by CLICKING HERE) for the scoop.

 

7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN and BUCK the documentary are available from the TSB online bookstore, where shipping in the US is always FREE.

CLICK HERE TO ORDER

 

 

7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN is the winner of two Telly Awards! Click the image above to find out more about these excellent instructional DVDs.

7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN is the winner of two Telly Awards! Click the image above to find out more about these excellent instructional DVDs.

 

 

And did you know? Kayla Starnes, writer of the Sidelines feature about Cindy Meehl and her film projects, is the author of TEAM ROPING 101,which is on sale now!

 

Learning from Buck Brannaman: A Small Town in Canada Comes in from the Cold to Study Horsemanship on the Big Screen

The small town of Winchester, Ontario, Canada, hosted a special screening of Discs 1 & 2 from the 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD series.

The small town of Winchester, Ontario, Canada, hosted a special screening of Discs 1 & 2 from the 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD series.

 

One Sunday in early December, just before the holidays took over but when the cold and dark had long since driven people out of the barns, off the trails, and into their homes, horsewoman Claire Griffiths brought her small, rural community together in the Old Town Hall Theatre on Main Street in Winchester, Ontario. Her goal? To offer a horse-friendly educational opportunity to keep people connected and growing as equestrians during the season when few had the means to or venue in which to ride.

 

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“Most of us don’t have indoor facilities that allow us to ride all year, so the saddles are put away once the freeze hits and we hibernate until things start to thaw out,” admits Claire. “As a result, we typically don’t see our horsey neighbors for many months. My hope was to bring our horse community together to learn, socialize, and entertain during an otherwise long and horseless season. 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN was a perfect way to start.

“And we did it! We opened the Old Town Hall Theatre doors and invited guests to watch the 7 CLINICS Discs 1 & 2 (Groundwork). Thirty people sat together and watched these discs from beginning to end. We also sold raffle tickets that benefitted Transistions Thoroughbreds, a local horse rescue, and gave the lucky winner, Joan Shorter, the complete 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN series…I’m still excited and smiling AND planning the next event!”

 

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If you, like Claire, live in a cold, riding-prohibitive region (or anywhere where there are education-hungry horse people, really!) and would like to host your own not-for-profit, public screening of an approved portion of 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN in a theater or other public venue, contact Trafalgar Square Books and Cedar Creek Productions with your proposal (rdidier@trafalgarbooks.com).

 

7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN is available from the TSB online bookstore, where shipping in the US is FREE.

CLICK HERE TO ORDER NOW

CLICK IMAGE TO ORDER

CLICK IMAGE TO ORDER

A Horse-Friendly Holiday Tune! Check Out the DELIGHTFUL Video from Templeton Thompson

Templeton Thompson has captured a bit of the holiday magic in her sweet new video.

Templeton Thompson has captured a bit of the holiday magic in her sweet music video.

 

When I was a little girl with horses of my own at home, I’d wake up early on Christmas morning and heat hot water, chop carrots, and mix in bran, grain, and molasses for a warm and sweet holiday mash I knew my pals down in the cold barn would love. The smell was intoxicating. I’d load my pockets with apples and pieces of candy cane and carry the buckets across the frozen field to where my “herd” waited. Their nickers were audible long before I reached the door…they could hear my boots crunching through the snow.

 

Templeton's Quarter Horses Jane and Beau sure are lucky!

Templeton’s Quarter Horses Jane and Beau sure are lucky!

 

I miss those moments, some of the best holiday memories I have…and they always happened before presents, before cinnamon rolls and pastries and cookies and turkey-emblazoned feasts. It’s good to have a herd of your own, a little snow, and warm bran mash on cold dark mornings.

Templeton Thompson has captured this magic in her delightful “Happy Yee-Halidays” music video. Take a few minutes to check it out!

 

Templeton’s SONGS FROM 7 CLINICS CD is part of the TSB ULTIMATE BUCK GIFT PAK, which also includes BUCK the award-winning documentary, the complete 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD series, and a BUCK tote bag! Order yours by Tuesday, December 17, 2013, and you’ll get FREE SHIPPING in the US in time for Christmas!

 

CLICK HERE TO ORDER NOW

CLICK IMAGE TO ORDER

CLICK IMAGE TO ORDER

 

–Rebecca Didier, Senior Editor

Top Trainers, Clinicians, and Horse Experts Share Their Thanks: Hurray for Supportive Parents, Guardian Angels, and the Animals in Our Lives

THANK YOU

 

Each year around this time, we ask some of our authors to share what they are thankful for, and it is always a fine reminder to open our hearts and minds to all that surrounds us, and greet each day—and the people and animals in it—with a smile.

 

“What I love about horses is understanding their minds, and through their minds, learning to understand how they move. The mind and the feet have always been connected. And when you are in tune with these you find yourself becoming one with the horse, with your mental and physical energies coming together. This is when you truly feel ‘freedom,’ and it is something I am very thankful for.” Marry Morrow, Horse Trainer and Co-Author of KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE

 

“I have so much to be thankful for it is hard to narrow it down, especially in the wake of the tornadoes that recently ripped through my home state. The town just 12 miles south had major damage and many homes are just gone—I am thankful that my family is okay and that in all the nearby devastation, not one life was lost.

“On a more basic level, I am thankful for my family, friends, health, and of course my animals, and the freedom to worship in the church of my choice without persecution. For a beautiful spring morning with birds singing, bright sunshine and green grass and a wonderful horse to ride through it all. My blessings are truly too numerous to list.”  Eunice Rush, Co-Author of KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE

 

“I am thankful for the 16 years I got to spend with my incredible dogs, Max and Luna. I lost them both within a few weeks of each other this past month. It broke my heart to lose them, but I am so grateful and honored that they shared their lives with me. The joy they brought is beyond measure. Thank you Max and Luna ~ you are forever in my heart!” Cindy Meehl, Director of BUCK the Documentary and 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN

 

“I am eternally grateful to Caroline Robbins and Martha Cook from Trafalgar Square Books for 20 years of creating my books to share with horse and companion animal lovers. And for the gift of having TSB senior editor, Rebecca Didier, as my co-author on my 20th and one of my most prized books yet, DRESSAGE WITH MIND, BODY & SOUL. My thanks to Trafalgar for all the years of support and encouragement of my work.

“And I am thankful for my husband, Roland Kleger, and my family and friends, and all the people and their horses and dogs that I have had the good fortune to meet and share Tellington TTouch with this year—in trainings, on FaceBook, on YouTube, and on my blog. May the support from your Guardian Angels continue to bless your lives.”  Linda Tellington-Jones, Creator of the Tellington Method and Author of DRESSAGE WITH MIND, BODY & SOUL and THE ULTIMATE HORSE BEHAVIOR AND TRAINING BOOK

 

We are thankful to live and work in a beautiful place--- Trafalgar Square Farm.

We are thankful to live and work in a beautiful place— Trafalgar Square Farm.

 

“I am thankful first for my good health. Being healthy is something no one should take for granted. I am also thankful for my wonderful supportive husband, who always has a good sense of humor about my horsie adventures!”  Janet Foy, FEI/USEF Dressage Judge and Author of DRESSAGE FOR THE NOT-SO-PERFECT HORSE

 

“I am thankful that my recent major surgery was successful and is behind me. I look forward to hitting the trails soon.” Linda Snow McLoon, Author of CROWN PRINCE and CROWN PRINCE CHALLENGED

 

“I have a lot in my life to be thankful for. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the love and support of my parents. They instilled in me the work ethic and determination that have made it possible to live my dream. I’m thankful for my loyal and talented team that allows me to share my horse training method with the world and for all the horse lovers out there who are committed to becoming better horsemen.” Clinton Anderson, Trainer, Clinician, and Author of PHILOSOPHY, LESSONS WELL LEARNED, and DOWNUNDER HORSEMANSHIP

 

“I am very thankful for the small things life has to offer and thankful for any opportunity to be a positive influence for others. If you’ve made someone smile, or laugh, or feel good about themselves, then you’ve had a successful day.” Kerry Thomas, Pioneering Researcher and Co-Author of HORSE PROFILING

 

“I’m thankful that my family, students, and publisher encourage me to believe in myself and write my new book PRESSURE PROOF YOUR RIDING.”  Daniel Stewart, Coach, Sport Psychologist, and Author of PRESSURE PROOF YOUR RIDING

 

And finally, a Thanksgiving poem from writer Laura Chester, author of RIDING BARRANCA:

I’m thankful for my health

despite unhealthy ways.

I’m thankful for my horses

who are thankful for their hay.

Thankful for my new book

“May it be read by all,” she prays.

I’m thankful for my children,

who still light up my days.

Grateful for this life we share

in tranquility and blaze.

 

We wish all safe travel and a very happy Thanksgiving.

—The TSB Staff

Enjoy 15% off and free shipping on all these titles and more at the TSB online bookstore! CLICK HERE

Halloween Tips for Keeping the “Scared” Out of Riding and Working with Horses

Halloween2013

 

When you work with or ride horses for long enough, there’s bound to be at least one moment where you find yourself with your heart pounding, your stomach in knots, and all-out fear pulsing through your body.

Scary incidents are an unfortunate byproduct of working with such large, powerful animals. Sometimes, a frightening scenario plays out because of human error. A person (often out of ignorance) may startle a horse or push him too hard or too fast. Horses are our athletic partners, and rider decisions made in training and competition can cause dangerous scenarios to unfold. Sometimes, the horse’s instinct for flight or fight is the source of danger. It does not matter how much you love your horse or how much you think he loves you—the fact remains that horses are hardwired for survival, and they possess teeth, hooves, speed, and size to make that possible.

The good thing is that we can educate ourselves to limit the number of scary incidents and keep riding and working with horses safe. The more we know about the horse and his instincts, the more we respect his power and teach him to respect our presence, the better we are at our chosen discipline, and the more secure our seat, the safer we will be. And, when we feel safe (not scared!) we can have more fun doing what we love to do.

Here’s what Buck Brannaman says about fear and how we can defeat it with knowledge in 7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN:

 

 

Riding in Real Life: The Runaway

When I was ten years old I went on a hack with my riding instructor. She was on a green training project and I was on an older OTTB mare. I’d ridden since I was five and was a confident kid. I’d also ridden the mare before in lessons.

We crossed the main road and headed up a fairly steep ascent. I don’t really remember how far we had traveled when the mare I was on decided she’d just had enough. She spun, and I stuck on, but then she was off, galloping downhill on a gravel road, faster than I’d ever gone in my life. Sitting here, typing this now, I can feel my heart racing at the memory of it…of how I couldn’t stop her…how I pulled back with all my strength and seesawed the reins, but the mare just pulled back harder and ran faster.

At the time, the only answer I had to the situation was to get off. At the time, hitting the ground hard seemed less scary than plummeting downhill toward a busy road on an out-of-control horse. I’d learned the emergency dismount when I’d started riding and managed some skewed form of it, flinging myself out of the saddle and then rolling, as I remembered being taught, away from my horse’s flying hooves.

I had a helmet on (thankfully). I didn’t break anything (thankfully). I was sprained and bruised and shaken, but other than that I was okay. The mare, too, survived her skidding, sliding navigation across the road and back to the barn, where we found her with lathered chest and heaving sides, reins dangerously looped loose up near her ears.

The tool I had needed when my horse ran away with me, but didn’t have yet, was the “pulley rein” or “one-rein stop.” I needed to know how to redirect my horse’s energy. Sergeant Rick Pelicano, author of BOMBPROOF YOUR HORSE and BETTER THAN BOMBPROOF describes it this way:

 

The Pulley Rein

1  Hold one rein tightly, braced on the neck and grabbing mane if you can.

2  Pull the other rein straight up and toward you.

3  Lean back, push your legs forward, and sit deep in the saddle.

Training Tip: Clinton Anderson has a great One-Rein Stop exercise to help train your horse to immediately stop and soften at any gait when you pick up one rein. Check out CLINTON ANDERSON’S DOWNUNDER HORSEMANSHIP.

 

But what about my instructor? What could she have done in my runaway scenario? Caroline Robbins, Publisher at Trafalgar Square Books, says that some of her scariest experiences riding were out on the trail with others, watching as a horse bolted and took off, and not knowing what to do or how to help.

Sean Patrick, author of THE MODERN HORSEMAN’S COUNTDOWN TO BROKE and one of this year’s Road to the Horse Wild Card Contestants, began his career as a high-country guide in the rugged mountains of British Columbia. I asked him about his experiences in groups and what onlookers should do when a fellow rider is in trouble.

 

Sean says:

1  Avoid reacting yourself. When a horse is pulling a tree out of the ground, jumping sideways or bolting off, remain still and quiet. When a handler rushes toward a reacting horse or yells, “Whoa!” the result is rarely helpful. A runaway does not need another horse to run behind it as well. The fleeing reaction might continue.

2  When in the saddle, the sound of thundering hooves can initiate a startle reflex with your own mount. When you feel this anxiety building, it might be best to simply take one rein and turn your horse to face the opposite direction. A well-trained mount will be able to stand quietly, but a more-novice horse may feel influenced by the other horse’s fear.

3  When a group is together in a pasture, and one rider is having great trouble, there is very little to do except keep yourself safe. This way the runaway horse is more likely to relax, slow down, and come back to the group. If a fall happens, at least you will be in control and able to come to the rider’s aid. When in such situations, I’ve learned to sit quietly and respond after it’s over.

 

Horses can bring us joy, peace, companionship with other people and other creatures, and they can bring us closer to the land that surrounds us. As long as we keep learning and strive to better understand the horse and react in more appropriate ways to his own reactions, as long as we seek instruction from others with more experience so we are prepared to handle whatever happens in the saddle, then we are on our way to keeping the “scared” out of riding and working with horses, and the joy in it.

Stay safe. Have fun. Happy Halloween

–Rebecca Didier, Senior Editor

 

All the books and DVDs mentioned in this post are available from the TSB online bookstore, where shipping in the US is always FREE.

CLICK HERE TO SHOP NOW

Great Photos of Horses and TSB Authors–Happy Friday!

The Trafalgar Square Farm horses, enjoying the fields this past summer--we already miss those long days of sunshine and late evening rides!

The Trafalgar Square Farm horses, enjoying the fields this past summer–we already miss those long days of sunshine and late evening rides!

 

Sometimes, it feels good to just remember why we love horses. On this Friday, enjoy a few photos that capture why we all work so hard to have horses in our life and do right by them.

 

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–The TSB Staff

www.horseandriderbooks.com