Here are my answers to your questions. 1.When did you start training horses?
I rode my first green broke horse when I was 9. My Dad started giving me all his green broke ones to put miles on when I was 12. Started breaking them myself when I was 14. 2. What was you first experience working with a horse like?
The first green broke horse when I was 9 taught me a lot.........after he bucked me off and broke my arm. Taught me to keep my butt in the saddle and watch the horse's ears and feel his movements. It has been a very challenging and rewarding experience. 3. Is it harder to train older or younger horses?
I haven't really noticed a difference. I have started horses ranging in age from 2 to 6. The oldest being my bay Mustang Koda. I didn't get him until he was 5 and he had be labeled one of those "untrainable" horses by his owner and a professional trainer. Sometimes older horses have had more time to get set in their ways and pick up more bad habits but that is the only thing. 4. What made you wan to train horses? Necessity, or maybe a job opportunity?
It was just runs in my family. My Dad has been training horses for about 40 years and I absolutely idolize him. I would give my eyeteeth to have one third the horse sense he has. Plus, horses are my passion. They give me a sense of accomplishment, fulfillment, and confidence. 5. What is the hardest thing you have ever taught a horse?
Trust. My gray Mustang Dobe had never been touched when I got him except to brand him and give his first round shots. He was even still a stud at 3 when I brought him home. It took a long time to get him where I could just walk up to him without him freaking out. Now he will follow me anywhere and when something scares him, he looks to me for support, comfort, and protection. 6. Whats the most rewarding thing about training?
There is no feeling in the world than to take a horse that everyone else has deemed "dangerous" or "untrainable" and have him kid broke in a couple of years. I don't know how many times I get that look of doubt when I tell people that I can be riding a young horse within a few hours and working cattle on him in days. 7. Do you plan to go professional in doing training?
I would love to but unless you plan to train show horses, around here it is hard to make a living. If you are just training riding horses, most of what you get are the culls that everyone else and their brother has tried to ride and nearly ruined. It takes more time to untrain their bad habits than it does to teach them correctly. That is if they don't hurt you. 8. How long does it take to train a green horse? Or does it depend on the horse?
It really depends on the horse and what prior experience they have had with people. I prefer to work with a horse that has never been handled because they are a clean slate and can be taught everything correctly from the beginning. A horse that has been handled can take much longer as I mentioned in #7. Also, some horses are just more stubborn than others and you have to be creative in your training styles. What works for one horse will generally not work for the next one. You have to modify your training style for each horse to get the same result. 9. Any other comments about training you think are important?
The most important thing in my mind is to challenge a young horse but a good trainer must know when to stop before they ask to much. You also cannot let a young horse get bored because that is usually when they start causing problems just to have something to do. A tired horse learns more than a fresh horse and you must be assertive and firm but never cruel. Correct bad behavior but never punish out of anger. If you begin to get angry, then you need to just walk away and start again tomorrow.
If you have any other questions, feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org