Force Free Horsemanship
Learn all about horses with opt in positive reinforcement
- 1 hr1 hour
- 45 US dollars$45
- Wild Ride
Join us for lessons on all things horses: anatomy, hoof care, first aid, grooming, handling, groundwork, training and more! Riding is an optional goal we can work towards, however both the horse and the rider must opt in and we will move very slowly under saddle. If you're looking to ride right away or compete, we are not the best option for you! We use awareness based mustang training techniques to create a two way communication between horse and handler. What does that look like? Maybe we ask the horse to step up to the mounting block and touch a target if/when they are ready to be ridden. We also use "get off my back" cues so if a horse is done with the ride, he can let the rider know. There's such joy in knowing that your horse has chosen to be ridden when given the option, under no threat of punishment, pressure, or aversive aids. This program is great for timid horse lovers, those who lack confidence, or people who have anxiety about riding but truly love the magic of horses. It's also a great option for those who have taken riding lessons in the past but didn't feel great about the "show him who's boss" mentality seen throughout the equestrian industry. What does this look like? Depending on your experience level with horses, we will start with horse anatomy, the basics of horse handling, reading their body language, how to cue and reward behaviors with clicker training. If your goal is to ride, we will approach the horse as if you were starting him under saddle yourself! This means making sure that his handling on the ground is solid, he understands voice and tactile cues, he is comfortable being tacked up and moves comfortably in tack, practicing mounting and dismounting with consent cues, taking the first steps under saddle at the walk, working on maneuvering, stopping and steering, etc. If you're thinking "well I have years of riding experience, I know how to steer!" this is about making sure the horse responds well to your cues to ensure a safe and stress free ride. Our policy is that you may not cue a behavior unless you know how to train it yourself. When you get on a horse and squeeze your legs to make him move forward, how would you teach them that squeeze means forward? Since we don't use escalating pressure (for example, squeeze, kick, spurs, whip until you get the desired response), if you don't know how to train the behavior, then you won't be able to help clarify things for the horse if they aren't responding to the cue.
To cancel or reschedule, please give us 24 hours notice
130 Old Cranston Road, Sterling, CT, USA