release the reins

unexpectedly charming

Before Season 2 of Voltron came out, I had read an article that had mentioned there would be several bonding moments between Keith and Allura, and as a pretty invested Klance and Shallura shipper, I was skeptical. I really was. I figured if it happened, it would happen, and I would just deal with it.

The last thing I expected was to like Kallura even a little bit, let alone be completely charmed by it.

(gif credit to the marvelous @flusteredkeith!)

Not only had Keith and Allura barely interacted, I didn’t really have a grasp on Keith (there were assumptions, of course, which I used to inform the way I wrote him in fic)- so going in, I had a lot of reservations. You could even call it a low-key notp, because I didn’t want them to get together just because they had been together in the original series. It didn’t make sense to me, given the interaction they had had up to that point.

But then some of my friends started watching season 2, and when I asked two of them about shipping moments, as I am wont to do, they both mentioned Kallura…and that it was actually kind of cute. And charming. And the all in all, they didn’t hate it.

I was intrigued. So I went into watching Season 2 with an open mind, and I discovered that it really was kind of cute. And the more I thought about it, the further I fell, and I really wanted to figure out why.

So I’ve decided to do the only thing I can do when I’m overwhelmed by feelings about something: write about it.

So here goes: a little meta essay (read: roughly 4,700 words with copious screenshots and gifs inserted for visual interest) on how I fell for Kallura, and why I’m interested in its potential, and why I think it’s worth giving a shot!

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Tips from Carl Hester

Elite dressage rider Carl Hester’s 35 top tips on everything dressage – from finding the right horse, to training and stable management techniques!

1 Dressage is not just for competition. It is gymnastics for horses and all horses can benefit from it, as they are more likely to stay sound with a long, stretchy neck, soft body and easy movement.

2 You don’t have to spend a fortune on a horse for dressage - as long as the basic paces are there, the rest can be acheived through training. The main paces to look at are walk and canter, as with a bit of work a horse with a very normal trot can trot beautifully.

In walk, the horse should use the whole of his body and have a good overtrack, where the hind foot lands in front of the print left by the front foot. A good canter has a bounding stride, with the hindleg jumping right underneath the horse and the front end lifted. Above all, though a good, natural rhythm is essential and is always more important than big movement.

3 When a horse is tired, he’ll try to stretch down. Let him do it for a while as it’s something you want to encourage. To stretch your horse, lengthen the rein, lower your hand and massage his mouth with the bit by gently squeezing and releasing each rein. Stretch him regularly throughout your training sessions to relax him and reduce the risk of tension.

4 In canter always ride forward – imagine there’s a big jump at the end of the long side that you’re going to take on!

5 Dressage is about repetition, repeating exercises over and over again until it becomes part of the horse’s way of going. It takes dedication, but is simply about producing a well-schooled horse – something we’d all like to have!

6 Even if your thing is dressage, mix your horse’s schooling up with hacking and jumping as it will keep him relaxed and interested. 

7 Always compete at the level below the one you are working on at home, so that you are able to cope at the competition where there are many more distractions.

8 Mirrors are a huge help in training as they enable you to see what your horse is doing – for example, how do you know whether he is straight without being able to see him?

9 Working-in is one of the most important aspects of dressage. You want your horse to be long, round and stretching before you start more taxing work, to get the muscles in front of and behind the saddle soft and working – gymnasts don’t hop straight onto the top bar! Ideally, walk for 10 minutes to start with, but if your horse is fresh, it is best to trot on to settle him down. 

10 Your horse must work in front of the leg. This means that he should move forward of his own accord and not expect you to keep motivating him – for example, if you ask for canter, he must learn to stay in canter without any leg pressure, until you tell him otherwise.  

11 If your horse is not responsive to your leg, ask for halt and with a loose rein, give him sharp quick taps with your leg until he moves forward – it doesn’t matter what pace he goes into, just let him move forward.

12 Create a work station on your yard, where everything to do with work happens – for example, tacking up and washing off – and keep his stable for relaxation only. Then your horse knows he can totally relax when he’s in his stable and won’t be expected to work.

13 If your horse is too sensitive to the leg, work on lots of downward transitions. 

14 Lots of transitions between canter and trot will help to improve the trot by getting him to carry more weight on his back end.

15 To maintain balance while you’re working your horse, use lots of 
half-halts. Think about using one before you ask your horse to 
do anything.

16 Give your horse sugar during training sessions as a reward and to help him mouth the bit, which will encourage him to salivate and make him lighter in the hand.

17 Riding your horse ‘on and back’ involves asking him for a few lengthened strides before asking him to come back to his working pace, then repeating it several times. This will help you to get him to carry his head and neck, and achieve self-carriage. 

18 When doing tempi changes – a series of flying changes – with more advanced horses, we ride along the wall of the arena to help keep the horse straight.

19 With a horse who is trained to do collected canter, you want to 
aim for a speed where someone can walk alongside you.

20 Use leg-yield in canter to make your horse more aware of your legs.

21 To help you maintain the rhythm while riding, keep a song in your head and sing it 
to yourself while 
you ride.

 Get someone to video you riding so you can see what’s working and where things are going wrong. Sometimes it’s more beneficial than having someone on the floor telling you what you’re doing wrong.

23 A good trot is all about suspension. When our horses are strong enough, we teach passage and use it to get suspension in the trot. We rise while doing this exercise, as it makes it easier for the horse and encourages lift. From passage, we take the trot forward until he realises that he needs to keep the suspension that he had in passage. If he loses the suspension, we halt, ask for passage and then try it again until he maintains the suspension in trot.

24 As a test of 
your training technique, go into rising trot and drop your reins. Your horse should stretch down, but if he sticks his head up, something needs adjusting in 
your training.

25 Never tell your horse off when teaching him flying changes, just keep repeating them until he gets it right, or he’ll start to get nervous and tense about doing them. 

26 If you can’t halt square on the centre line, it’s your fault! It requires training, so to make sure you can do this, teach your horse that he must always stand square, even for mounting and dismounting. To teach your horse to stand square, ask for it along the side of the school. Trot, ask for a few steps of walk, then step forward into halt. He must step forward to halt, not back to halt.

27 Hacking up hills will help with fitness and muscle development.

28 In walk, try not to interfere too much and remember that during a test, a long walk on a free rein is not a time for a break! It requires as much attention and concentration 
as the other movements.

29 Don’t rush your schooling and ask for too much, too soon. It’s important that your horse is strong enough to be able to do what you’re asking him to do, or he could suffer injury. It normally takes four to five years to get to Grand Prix level, without any problems along the way, as it takes that long for the horse to become strong enough to perform the movements required at that level. If you have any setbacks, it can take longer and often does.

 When you stop and salute the judge at a competition, remember 
to smile! 

31 Get to a show in plenty of time and hack your horse around the showground on a loose rein, so he has time to get used to his surroundings before he is expected to concentrate.

32 Plenty of turnout allows your horse time to relax and he’ll be more relaxed during his training.

33 At competitions, wear clothes and tack that you and your horse are used to and comfortable in. Suddenly using different equipment on competition day can affect your performance. If you have special show boots and tack, have a few dress rehearsals at home just before the show date.

34 The key to training horses is patience and consistency – you will get there!

35 If possible, recreate the type of arena you’ll be riding your test in at the competition and have a practice in it. For example, check what size the arena will be and measure one out the same size at home to practise the test in, or if you usually work in a school, but the competition is on grass, practise riding the test on grass.

The Only One Who Can Drag Me Down

I Have Loved You Since Extras: The Only One Who Can Drag Me Down


*If you are NOT comfortable with reading sexual content, I advise you to skip this piece* 


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Imagine asking Eomer to go riding through Rohan and perhaps find a quiet place to be alone

ironandrocksalt | | Imagine

You looked up at the Golden Hall of Meduseld, sighing slightly to yourself as you went about your work. You had moved to Edoras the year before to try and make your own way in the world, but everything seemed too big, and too busy. You were much more at home on the wide empty plains, riding to your heart’s content, but that was a thing of the past now since your new work kept you so busy.

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anonymous asked:

are there certain ships that you think blizzard acknowledges as being at least somewhat true? besides gency

Can I just say first and foremost - that #gency is OTP and I love it and I’m so happy that blizzard have made it clear that even though these two beautiful souls aren’t officially/canonically romantically involved, they still have a past and are at least close friends-

That being said -

I know for a fact(in my heart) that either anahardt and ana76 has to be canon. I’m really hoping grandpa is fareeha’s pop, tbh if Jack is revealed to be her pop i’d still be happy.

But anahardt is so fucking cute a tear is accidentally released everytime I hear rein saying: “ana! How can this be? We thought you were dead…” The pain in his voice is clearer than sunlight and i just want to hold him :( he loves his ana

Louis Walsh: “Simon Cowell has lost control of One Direction”
The veteran judge says he wouldn't let his band air their dirty laundry in public
By Zoe Shenton

Louis Walsh reckons Simon Cowell has lost control of One Direction following Louis Tomlinson’s recent Twitter spat with Naughty Boy.

Last week Louis and the music producer became embroiled in another a very public war of words, which eventually saw ex-band member Zayn also wade in.

Louis, who has managed some of the UK’s biggest bands, said he’d never let his own boy band HomeTown air their dirty laundry on social media.

“I would have given them a good b**locking – they would know never to do anything like that. I would probably sack them.”

He added: “You don’t air your dirty laundry in public. Simon made this band. They would be nowhere without Simon Cowell. Let’s get that straight. He put them together, he pressed the buttons, he made it happen. Without Simon they’d be nothing.”

The latest row prompted Zayn, who quit the band in March, to write to pal Louis: “Remember when you had a life and stopped making bitchy comments about mine?”

But while Walsh predicts the band will be together for another few years yet, he says X Factor boss Simon has “lost control”.

“I think he’s lost control of them and that’s what happens with bands. They get too big and don’t listen to anybody and then it’s all over, and then they think ‘why didn’t we listen?’.”

“Meanwhile Louis, who is working in partnership with the O2 to 'big people’ up, said he always listens to Simon if he needs someone to big him up and make him feel better.

“If it is management or professional advice Sharon Osbourne is very good because she’s always very blunt and very honest with me. Simon is always honest too and I talk to Simon an awful lot.”

anonymous asked:

How do you start leaving the clicker out of your horses daily life? Like, what happens once your horse has learned a behavior? Do you just gradually stop reinforcing with the clicker and treats? Isnt it odd for the horse if you just stop rewarding it in that way for a certain behavior but still demand it?

I feel like this is one of those mental roadblocks that trip a lot of people up over clicker training.

You never stop rewarding your horse. You just eventually change what you reward for, and how big a reward they get.

It’s like learning anything. When you were a kid learning how to use the toilet, your parents probably threw you a little party the first time you figured it out. But now that you’re a grown adult (or at the very least, old enough to use a computer), nobody congratulates you for using the toilet. That’s baby stuff.

It’s the same with horses. Say you have a green horse who goes in a circle with a rider on and manages to understand some basic leg and rein aids. You throw them a fucking party. That party could be a -r party (remove the heavy rider, the tight cinch, and let them roll) or a +r party (stuff their face with treats) or both (rider and saddle come off, -r, let them go eat grass at the edge of the arena, +r). But because they’re a little green baby, they get a fucking party. Because it was difficult and new and confusing for them, and they did a good job, and you want them to know that so they’ll do it again. Once they’ve done that a few times, they don’t get a fucking party for going in a circle, they get a fucking party for going in two circles. It may seem like you’re removing the reward, but you aren’t. You’re just delaying it, and attaching one previously rewarded behavior (first circle) to a new one (second circle).

Does Valegro get a party for walking in a circle and managing to understand some basic leg and rein aids? Hell no. Because he’s a grown adult who kicked ass at the Olympics. What he does get, at the end of a ride, is a solid release of pressure (reins thrown away, not asked to perform any more behaviors, gets to leave the arena and be untacked and probably get a nice brushing and some snacks). He gets an adult sized party. And because he’s been well trained, and well conditioned, you can see that the extraordinary behaviors he performs are really not that difficult for him. That’s the magic of good training: making the difficult thing easy, so the horse is never unwilling to do it. So they don’t warrant a full on fiesta in the mind of the horse. Because it’s easy and a matter of routine for them.

The size of the reward is proportionate to the difficulty of the behavior, and that’s the key to successfully training any horse, no matter if you’re using -r or +r, or both.

If you know your horse, you know when you can start withholding a bit more reward to get a bit more difficult behavior. When those behaviors become a matter of habit (lowering their head for the halter, holding still for the fly spray, picking up their feet for the farrier, picking up the canter) you can stop rewarding those things altogether, and move on to training other things. But you never stop rewarding.

                                                 SAPPHIRE SKIES

                                              SEASON 8, EPISODE 1


Knuckles turned white as her hand grasped his as it lay on the armrest between them. His wife looked over at him alarmingly as the single propeller plane continued to make its bumpy descent, her gold cross and band bouncing around her neck as she turned in her seat.

“Ah…Teresa, can you loosen your grip a little?” Jane remarked, grimacing slightly at Lisbon’s powerful handhold.

“You remember what I told you when you asked me the same question when I was giving birth?” she bit back with, glowering at him.

“I believe it was something along the lines of ‘Go to Hell, you jackass’. And I’m paraphrasing. I edited out the rather more colorful suggestions you made to me that day,” her husband chuckled back.

Despite her fear of imminent death she grinned as she recalled the birth of their son, softening her hold in the process.

Their child.

Even over a year later she still found it hard to believe that their lives had changed so dramatically in that time. After sitting in neutral for over a decade they’d suddenly put on booster packs and the last year had fast-forwarded their relationship, forever altering it. Jane had finished restoring the cabin he’d bought for them, putting as much passion and zeal into its renovation as he had in solving cases. She’d gone from field work to desk duty to maternity leave.

Then Liam had arrived and suddenly late night diaper runs, breastfeeding and never ending washing had taken the place of working, going over case notes and having time to eat a meal at a table together. But she wouldn’t change a moment of the past year. Well, maybe she could have done without the heartburn and the swollen ankles and the inability to get off a couch unaided in the latter stages of her pregnancy. But as soon as that tiny human being was placed in her arms she forgot all of the pain and discomfort that went before, swept away on a cloud of euphoria and pure love. She and Jane had been living on it ever since.

Her thoughts on their child, she didn’t realize they were on the ground until a loud thud disturbed them. “Thank god!” she stated, raising her eyes to heaven and fingering her cross as she saw lush greenery around her as the plane rolled to a slow stop on the dirt runway.

Jane whispered in her ear, “I told you I should have put you in a trance before we took that connecting flight.”

The airport shuttle pulled up at the white bricked Hotel and they trudged off, both sticky from the sweltering heat of the rickety bus ride.

“I’m glad you’re not wearing your suits here,” Lisbon commented, fanning her face with her hand, as she glanced at him in his white shirt and faded blue jeans combo, a look he’d adopted when he’d started to renovate the cabin. And creature of habit he was it was his normal outfit of choice in everyday life more often than not now. She was pleased she had chosen to travel in a purple cotton maxi dress for their second chance at a honeymoon, its loose and flowing material giving her freckled skin some respite from the burning rays of the midday sun.

He chuckled as his eyes darted around the complex for a second before he took Lisbon’s hand and strolled towards the reception desk in the main building as a busboy picked up their luggage.

“This must bring back some memories, huh?” Lisbon whispered at his side, goosebumps alighting on her bare arms as she felt the welcome breeze of air conditioning.

His squeezed her hand. “You could say that.” Recollections hit him squarely in the face of the years spent here and for a second his expression turned melancholy until he faced her where a dazzling smile took its place. “Come on, let’s get checked in.” His smile grew when he saw the young man behind the reception desk do a double take when he lifted his head from the computer in front of him.


Jane was quickly embraced in a hug as the man rushed from behind the desk. “Hey Franklin, I see you’ve moved up in the world!” he beamed, patting the other man’s back.

“Yes!” Then suddenly Franklin’s face fell, “Patrick is…is everything all right? Are you in trouble-?”

“No,” Jane laughed, glancing at Lisbon who was looking at the sight unfold before her, evidently amused. “For once I’m not. Just here on vacation for a few days.”

“Only a few days? Surely you can stay longer?!”

“Afraid not. Obligations back home,” he grinned, casting a sideways glance at Lisbon. “Very important obligations indeed.”

Jane managed to withdraw from the other man’s grip and put his arm around Lisbon’s waist. “Actually we’re on vacation. Well, honeymoon really. Kind of. Franklin, I’d like you to meet my wife, Teresa.”

Lisbon smiled at Jane and then at Franklin. “Hi, it’s a pleasure to meet-”

“You are Teresa? Teresa Lisbon?!”

Lisbon frowned as she noticed Jane color a little at the younger man’s words. “I…I may have mentioned your name once or twice when I lived here,” he whispered in her ear.

“Really?” she grinned, arching a self satisfied eyebrow.

He shrugged, “Maybe. Just in passing, of course.”

Lisbon regarded him skeptically, still smiling. “Sure, in passing, of course.”

“Wow, this is some place. Nice of your friend to upgrade us,” Lisbon remarked as she stood in the center of their large suite after Jane tipped the busboy and closed the door of their hotel room.

“Not bad, huh?” he smiled as he set their bags on the king sized bed.

“And best of all it has air conditioning.”

Suddenly Jane stopped what he was doing and put a hand to his ear, frowning as he listened. “What is it?” Lisbon said, mirroring his expression.

“The quiet,” he whispered with a wink.

She laughed then began to play with her hands. “It feels weird though, doesn’t it?” she frowned.

He quickly took the few steps required to stand opposite her and put his arms around her, settling his hands on her hips. “Just the two of us. Yeah, it does,” he admitted. “It’s mostly just been the three of us in our own little bubble for the past six months. But you know Grace and Wayne will be great with him. He’s so much more alert now than when they last saw him and he took to them right away when they came to stay with us before we flew out here.”

"Yeah, I know. Hope they’ll be okay at the cabin. It was sweet of them to offer to come babysit him there.”

“I think Rigsby was looking forward to taking Ben fishing at the lake. And easier for Liam too to be in his home environment at this stage. But I detected an ulterior motive from Grace wanting them to get away from San Francisco and work for a few days.”


“She’s trying to talk Rigsby into having another one of their own.”

Lisbon grinned, “Is that so?”

He nodded, “Yep. But I’m not sure being in a house with a teething baby is going to necessarily help her cause.”

She bit her lip. “God, I feel bad now. Maybe we shouldn’t have left him so early, Jane.”

“We talked about this, Lisbon. It’s just for a few days; as long as he’s fed he’ll barely miss us. They’ll more than make sure he’s spoilt rotten.” He paused, “It’s harder on us than it is on him. Do you want to Skyface them again or whatever?”

She rolled her eyes. “I know you are not that much of a technophobe, Jane. And we agreed to limit ourselves to checking on him four times a day. We only talked to them two hours ago before we got on that death trap of a plane. They’ll think we’re crazy and don’t trust him with them if we keep calling them.”

“They’re parents themselves. They’ll understand.”

Just as Jane’s words were uttered Lisbon’s cellphone beeped, alerting her to a text message. A photo of Liam, sound asleep and dressed in a San Francisco Giants sleepsuit greeted her, a wisp of a blond curl peeking out from a matching hat. As she showed it to Jane he kissed the top of her head as her eyes grew teary. Softly, “Seems Grace has inherited some of her cousin Yolanda’s psychic skills after all,” he joked, his voice tender but raw.

Lisbon wiped a stray tear from her eye as she laughed. “Damn hormones. And I’m going to tell her you said that. And I’m going to kill Rigsby for buying him that outfit.”

“But clever of him to wait until he had some space between you before he dug it out,” Jane laughed.

She puffed out a breath to gather herself. Louder, “To be honest I was surprised you suggested a trip away, I could barely get him out of your arms the past couple of months to feed him or put him down.”

He tightened his hold on her as his expression turned serious. “Well that’s partly why I thought we should take some time just for us. I don’t…I don’t want to become one of those fathers, Teresa.”

“How do you mean?”

He sighed. “One of those parents who lose a child and then become overly protective of another one. And you know…well…I have a tendency to become quite obsessively overprotective with those I love. I don’t want him to feel like I’m holding him back from experiencing life like a child should just because of what happened to Charlotte. I need to learn how to release the reins when I feel myself pulling on them a little too tightly.”

She pulled him closer, linking her hands together across his back. “You would never allow him to feel like that, Jane. You’re a great father. Both then and now.”

He kissed her softly on the lips. “Thank you for that. I love you.”

She pecked his lips in return. “Love you too.”

A beat passed as he cleared his throat. “Anyway, another reason for the trip now is that you’re going back to work next week. After that who knows when we’ll get another chance? Plus, well our honeymoon was spent with your head down a toilet. Not exactly the romantic getaway either of us was hoping for.”

She laughed, “Yeah, the morning sickness was not fun. Especially when it turned into afternoon and evening sickness too. But it was a pretty swanky bathroom in that hotel at least.”

“Looking on the bright side, eh?” he smiled.

“Like we agreed. So far it’s worked out pretty well.”

He glanced at the photograph of their son again. He whispered, “Can’t deny, it has that.”

She released him as her tone turned bossy. “Now, let’s grab a shower so you can show me around this old stomping ground of yours. We’re only here for a couple of days; let’s make the most of it. After all your letters I feel like I know the place already. Can’t wait to see it with my own eyes.”

He smirked, “That’s another thing we haven’t had time for in a very long time, my dear.”

“What’s that?”

“Been able to have a shower together.”

She kissed him firmly on the lips with a twinkle in her eyes. “Well, it would save time. And water.”

“Not necessarily,” he grinned.

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It is proposed that trainers continuously test for self-carriage by completely releasing the reins or taking the legs away from the horse’s sides for two steps in the walk and trot and two strides in the canter and gallop.  In this short time-frame, the horse should not loose gait, rhythm, tempo, line, straightness or head-carriage.  We recommend the use of this technique (known as the German technique of Überstreichen) as the test of self-carriage in all movements and gaits where possible both in training and in the execution of dressage tests.  This would serve to lower behavior wastage in those horses that are held in forced frames rather than exhibiting correct learned responses.
—  Paul McGreevy & Andrew Mclean ~ Equitation Science
They Call Them Trinity - Chapter 12

Oooooh final chapter! There’s a little epilogue coming up, but this is it folks! I’m starting so many new fanfics, I honestly have no idea which one is coming next. There are good chances that I will take a little break though… I don’t want to start posting if I’m not sure I can keep the schedule. Here’s your SFF, SFW, 2,670 words final chapter. 

Edited once again by the excellent hartfic <3 <3 <3 mao.

Read chapter 11 here

All chapters here

The crowd parts and makes a pathway for the ‘newly engaged’ couple, and even the policemen are clapping their hands.

“Holy fucking trinity! They made it.” Tyler cries out, and somehow it gets picked up, because someone starts chanting “Trinity! Trinity!” as if it were the name of the act.

Mamrie takes the chance - because why not? - and grabs Hannah’s hat. “Thank you! Thank you, I hope you enjoyed the show!” she shouts, and invites the patrons to toss some coins in.

Hannah and Grace run around the saloon, and they are barely inside the stable before Grace is tugging Hannah’s arm and kissing her against the wall. Her heart’s pulsing in her throat, in a mixture of fear and adrenaline and want. This is it. This is the high she always comes down from. This is the moment she lives for - she dodged death once more.

“We made it” she whispers against Hannah’s lips between kisses. The girl nods, slightly overwhelmed, and replies: “We made it.”

Grace rests her hands on Hannah’s neck, careful not to ruin Hans’ sideburns, and kisses her again, and it tastes like victory and raw survival.

“You need to go” Hannah says as she finds the strength to pull away for a second.

“I need to go” Grace replies breathlessly, but doesn’t move an inch. If anything, she’s pushing in a bit further, and her thigh presses between Hannah’s legs.

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Straightness Training Clinic w/ Marijke de Jong Insights:

I didn’t take tons of notes because most of the theory lectures were about things I am already was familiar with, so these are my notes from my 3 lessons with Marijke and some of the participants lessons.

Before beginning work, does the horse have mental balance?  Is he distracted, fresh, pushy, or in a defensive or fearful state?

A balanced mind in the beginning is more important than a balanced body

Do whatever you feel you need to do before going to your original plan.  You cannot train a fearful or defensive horse.

Return horse to focused state by:

  • Redirecting energy by asking head down cue, back up, shoulder or hunches yield.
  • You can  do “Natural Horsemanship” techniques but you must make sure the horse understands what waving the whip at the hind or shoulders means.  If the horse does not understand, start slow and gradual.  Reward the slightest try.  Shaping = rewarding the slightest “better than before”.
  • In the defensive mode, make sure to reward the slightest sign of positive behavior or “better attitude”.  Convince the horse that there is nothing to resist.  “People will easily fight back against the horse, but the horse is stronger.  Not such a good idea.”

“Mind Exercises”

  • Backing (from close and from far)
  • Shoulder yield
  • Haunches yield
  • Combine haunches and shoulder yielding once the horse calmly yields to light pressure
  • Change directions slowly on a small circle
  • Release, Reward, AND Relax.  Give breaks frequently when introducing new concepts, especially if the horse is not familiar with yielding exercises. 

For Bubs, after the YES reinforcer and the reward, give at least a 10 second break.

Separate all concepts first.  Once understood, they can be combined. 

Ground Work & Work in Hand

“Can you bend around me?” instead of focusing on bad behavior.  Tell the horse what to do, not what not to do.  If I tell you to not think of a pink elephant, what do you think of?

~The lower chin strap of the cavesson has its roots in the military.  The tighter and lower strap stopped other soldiers from pulling their opponents bridles off from the front.  The more “modern” throat latch has no real purpose.  Bridles without throat latches are coming into fashion again.

~Holding on to the rein constantly does not allow the horse to find self carriage.  Half halts with small vibrations.

~Holding on to the reins of a pushy horse gives the horse more reason to push against contact.  Release often.

“wheelbarrow reins” - always giving the reins to the horse rather than taking them.  The reins belong to the horse.

~For renvers, if the bend is not good in the standstill, the bend will not be good in movement.  Go to the front a check the bend.  Let the horse stay in stelling before asking for forwardness.

~It is better to have and reward the horse for 2 good steps of renvers than do a whole long side of renvers in poor quality.  Quality, not quantity.  There needs to be awareness in the horse of what kind of quality should be expected, even it if is only a few steps.

~In the teaching phase, reward the slightest “better than before”.  If you try to do two long sides of travers without making sure to notice and reward the horse for the best quality moments, the horse will not know the difference between the poor quality and the good quality.  But you do not need to wait until the movement is perfect.  Look for movements better than before.


~Versal and traversal aids to help bending around a perfect circle of the diameter of your liking.

~Remember to have wheelbarrow reins

~A helper on the ground helps to discourage unwanted behaviors from becoming habits.  Make the right answer easy and the wrong answer difficult.

~DO NOT limit the forward down movement of the head and neck by holding the outside rein too tightly.  Bring the horse to the outside rein.  Don’t hang on to it.

~It is easier for the horse to push against the cavesson when the rider never releases pressure.

Liberty Concepts

~Liberty concepts “on line” get the horse to learn how to yield the shoulders and haunches softly.

~a hand target can help re-focus a horse to stay with you. 

~“liberty” isn’t liberty if the horse has no other choice but to stay with you.  Liberty is a check to see if the horse is genuinely interested in the work you do.