horse back, he’ll get closer to the object until eventually he’s right next to it. If your horse spooks and you can’t tell exactly what it is he’s spooking at, put his feet to work. Using one rein bend him in a series of serpentines. It’s impossible for a horse to use the reactive side of his brain when he’s constantly stopping and redirecting his feet. When he’s focused on you, put him on a loose rein and head back down the trail. Anytime he gets jumpy, put his feet to work. Soon he’ll be so focused on you he won’t have time to find potential objects to spook at.
riding in an open area where you have plenty of room to move his feet and keep his attention on you. The more comfortable he gets about being ridden outside the arena, the more experience he gains and the more confident you
you and him out of danger. Author note: Clinton Anderson is a clinician, horse trainer and competitor. He’s dedicated his life to helping others realize their horsemanship dreams and keeping them inspired to achieve their goals. The Downunder Horsemanship Method gives horse owners the knowledge needed to become skilled horsemen and train their horses to be consistent and willing partners. Discover for yourself how Clinton and the Method can help you achieve your horsemanship dreams at www.downunderhorsemanship.com.
Before hitting the trail, be sure your horse is in the right frame of mind, meaning he’s calm, using the thinking side of his brain and focused on you.
#4 Chose Your Trail Wisely Be smart about the trails you take your horse on, being sure to take his experience, your experience and the type of trail into account. For example, if you’re taking your horse out on the trail for the first time, I recommend
become, you can increase the challenge by choosing more difficult trails. Before taking a horse on a narrow trail where you won’t be able to easily redirect his feet if he spooks or gets nervous, make certain he’s confident being ridden outside the confines of an arena. While no horse is completely “spook-proof,” an experienced trail horse has learned to think before reacting, keeping both
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July 2018 Horses Magazine