Monday, December 12, 2011

Stationary Lunge with James Cooler

When I had horses as a child and teenager, I never ground worked.  EVER!  Now I wouldn't ever consider not doing ground work before a ride.  Sometimes, if time is short, I choose ground work over riding!

Ground work, when I was young, meant lunge line work with the horse trotting and/or doing a lot of cantering.  Now it means so much more.  Cutbacks, backing up, mobile lunge, making them move their shoulders on an outward turn... it goes on and on and my girls and I are just learning the basics and have a long way to go.

The video above is of James working with Indigo.  I'm not sure when it was filmed, but Indigo now does a lot of stuff off the halter and line and their Freedom work is so fun to watch.

Below is a video of my daughter working Oberon on "cutbacks".  When we fist started this, we were so "gangly" with the stick and string, our cues and the rope.  We have much improved and will soon add a longer rope to the equation. 

and Sebastian chilling while watching his buddy, Oberon work:

 Our goal is do Freedom work.  The video below is of Robin Gates and her beautiful horses - I believe they are located in California.  


Anonymous said...

I know that I am still really looking for Mr. Ed, my first-love horse. ~Mary

Deanna said...

I love your photos!! I hear you on the NEVER ground worked before riding when we were kids! It just wasn't a thing that anybody did in my horsie-world back then. If a horse had a few bucks and kicks in them - you just rode that out.
Great post Margaret!

Margaret said...

Frank & Mary - It would be so much easier if they understood everything we told them, verbally. But as it is, we need to learn "their" language. :)

Deanna - yup. And I'm too old to ride a lot of "bucks and kicks" out any more.

Anonymous said...

The one thing that was apparent in all the videos - the whip. What is "natural" about using the threat of a whip to train a horse?

Margaret said...

I truly wish Anonymous had an address for me to respond to... This is NOT a whip and it is NEVER used to harm the horse in any way. I think of it as a third arm a pointer, perhaps, an extension to create energy. NEVER, ever is it used to intimidate or harm.

I have done some work with my horse in a round pen ... no halter, no lead rope. Just with cues from my body and a directional pointing of the stick and string we work together. He LOVES his freedom and the communication between us is so fun!

I PET him with the stick and string, scratch his chest and rub his back. He loves it. I will eventually drape the string over his back to cue him to move with me, etc. No force, no hurt.

I hope, Anonymous, that you swing back and read my comment.