Why Your Horse Feels Soft or Hard

People often describe how their horse feels when they’re riding. Some say their horse is soft in the mouth and light and supple. Some say their horse is stiff and hard and they need to flex him to one side to soften his neck and poll. Others say their horse is hard in the mouth … Read more

A Bit of Bit Advice

Walk into any saddlery and you’ll see many different types of bits. There are hundreds of different types of snaffle bits – all shapes and sizes, smooth metal, rough metal, twisted wire etc etc. There are hundreds of different types of curb bits – short shanks, long shanks, spoons in the horse’s mouth, nose pieces … Read more

How to Teach Your Horse to Give

Giving is a state of mind. It’s not a physical condition whereby a horse carries his head low and feels soft in your hand. When a horse is ‘giving’ it means he’s relaxed, listening, moving forward and trying his hardest for you. To teach a horse to give, he must first be taught to move … Read more

Mouthing a Horse

There’s a misconception in the horse world that you need to do something to a horse’s mouth or nose so that he’ll stop or turn. In fact, I’m often asked how I ‘mouth’ a young horse. My answer is always the same, “I’ve never been able to teach any horse’s mouth anything.” There’s no process … Read more

A Happy Agreement with your Horse

Many people have a happy agreement with their horse, whereby the rider is happy when their horse mostly does as they ask for most of the time. Whether they ride in an arena, in a paddock, down the road or on the trail, many people are happy to simply arrive at their destination. They don’t … Read more

Straight Talk for You and Your Horse

The aim of every rider should be to have their horse confident and relaxed and moving forward with straightness. This doesn’t mean that your horse moves in a straight line. Neither does it mean that your horse keeps his body straight. Straightness means that your horse is relaxed and confident and moving forward with an … Read more

Using Sticks and Spurs Correctly is Not Cruel

Many people have an unjustified prejudice against the use of sticks and spurs in horse training. They think that sticks and spurs are cruel and are used to punish a horse and ‘show him who’s boss’, and therefore should never be used on any horse. Some people believe that horses are naturally afraid of sticks … Read more