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Re: [RC] re: hobbling to saddle - Jim Holland

I'm not a Pat Parelli fan....WAAAAY to many dumb "showmanship" stunts to
sell his methods, but he is an excellent horseman. I even use some of
his stuff. However, there are techniques that he uses I would NEVER
use...like bumping the horse on the chin with the lead rope to back him
out of your space. I want the horse to DROP his head and back away.
IMHO, anything that causes the horse to RAISE his head reduces his
"calmness" level. I teach my horses to drop their head and "seek" the
bridle or halter with their nose, which is what Pat Parelli is
teaching...just going about it in a different way. 

"Safe" is relative and you are never truly "safe" around horses. Too
many unpredictable factors. You always take chances when you deal with
horses...you can only reduce the risk to whatever level is acceptable
for you and based on how much training you are willing to do.

That said, I spend LOTS of time UNDER my horses, starting under
controlled conditions. Clean all four feet from the same side. Sit with
a foot in my lap, raise their back with my back by crouching under their
belly, and many other "underneath" exercises. My farrier sits on the
floor UNDER my horses to rasp their feet with them UNRESTRAINED.  Could
he or I get injured? You bet, but you could also get killed in a car
accident, too. We are both "comfortable" with that...and so are the
horses. To us it is an "acceptable" risk and the benefits are worth it.

Magic dumped me off once and I rolled UNDER Sunny with Joan riding him
alongside and both horses spooking. Split my nylon vest all the way down
the back but he managed to avoid me...not a scratch! Why? Because he was
USED to me being under him and his training and the "trust and respect"
he had been taught overrode his fear.

It has been my experience in working with horses that a respectful, well
trained horse will not intentionally step on you and being unrestrained
gives him more latitude to avoid you if he does spook. My goal is to do
everything unrestrained, which is of course, desirable but not
practical. However, if he is USED to being unrestrained during handling,
he is less likely to take advantage of being "loose" and doesn't
consider it unusual. 

"Desensitizing" him to everything you can find from upside down saddles
to ATV's significantly improve his confidence when dealing with scary
stuff and increase his trust and respect for you. The more stuff he can
see and experience the better. However, it's important you present it
small increments so he can deal with it in his own timeframe. Some
horses "adapt" to strange stuff more quickly than others. No two horses
are the same. Patience, Patience, Patience. Manners, Manners, Manners.

There is no substitute for training. Magic has gone from a dumb 4 1/2
year old who couldn't stand still for 5 seconds and with no ground
manners to the horse above. How long did it take? More than TWO YEARS! 

At his first Endurance Ride, he was almost perfect. His only problem was
the one thing I couldn't teach....riding in a bunch of horses going fast
and being passed. (One of the disadvantages of living in the boonies
with no one to ride with) <sigh>

What works for one person, may not work for another. Look at what
EVERYBODY is doing, and as Pat says, "Take it all with a grain of salt".
Use the parts that work for you. People, like horses, are all different.

Jim, Sun of Dimanche, and Mahada Magic

superpat wrote:

I agree with you that many of the Parelli stunts are just that, but I do
disagree with you about the bridling issue. If you have worked with your
horse so that it will lower it's head and keep it there, while you introduce
and the horse accepts, the bridle, you have achieved a certain communication
and respect with that horse. I think that this is a perfectly sane and safe
exercise. I would not expect that one would ever be on two knees under a
horse's legs. If you place one knee on the ground while the other leg is
slightly in front of you, you can move as quickly as is necessary if the
horse were to side step. I think it is good to try exercises that test the
horse's trust of you and respect.
Just as cleaning all four of the horse's hooves from one side of the horse.
I certainly would not want to do this every time, but, again, it is a great
exercise occasionally. Added benefit is that if you are on a narrow trail
and need to work with a hoof on the off side from you and it would be
impossible or dangerous to try to go to the other side, this exercise,
having been performed at home, can become a practical way to deal with a
potential problem.
I think that you can take away much valuable information and training
methods from Pat Parelli. I don't even think he expects you to try some of
his stunts. what is that saying "take everything with a grain of salt"?

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[RC] re: hobbling to saddle, Teresa Van Hove
Re: [RC] re: hobbling to saddle, superpat
Re: [RC] re: hobbling to saddle, Sullivan
Re: [RC] re: hobbling to saddle, superpat