It should be mentioned that while the 7 games are originally taught as ground work they can be "played" while riding. The games teach principles that apply to all aspects of your horse handling. I'll try putting the 7 games into more traditional terms, maybe the value of the games will become apparent, and many of you will see that you already do these things, without the silly names. Friendly game
= Desensitizing and bonding; get your horse's trust Porcupine game
= Teach your horse to yield from steady pressure(reins, legs, lead, ect.) Driving game
= Teach your horse to yield from rhythmic pressure(riding crop, asking them to move out of your space)
The first three are the basic "core" games your horse must be comfortable with to do just about anything else. Yo-yo game
= Teaching impulsion; Having your horse to move forward and backward equally well, including speeding up and slowing down within a gait. This "game" is vital to good riding. Circling game
= Similar to lounging; Also very useful in teaching impulsion and helping your horse learn to rate himself without having to be micro managed. Sideways gam
e = Lateral movement; Leg yields, shoulders in, haunches in, side passing, and asking your horse to step over in a wash rack or up to a mounting block all fall in this category of " Sideways game" Squeeze game
= Desensitizing while your horse is moving between or over obstacles; Into trailers, over jumps, streams, past a plastic bag beside the road, through that inexplicably scary place in the trail are all "Squeeze Games"
The only reason they are called "Games" is to remind us that spending time with our horses should be FUN rather than work and that you should always keep your sense of humor with your horse
so you don't get harsh or frustrated. After all, it's just a game!