Ground Work - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 01-16-2011, 11:21 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2010
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Ground Work

A new rescue came to our barn the other day. He is a little thin, but he is super friendly and just loves attention!! He was kind of pushy about being led, but I think we've established our space, and he's fine now. I taught him to back up in a few minutes, as he was running me over for treats...

I was wondering what kind of ground work we should start with? I don't want to sound like I'm rushing it, but he's settled in super nicely. It looks like he's been here for years.

He's only 2 1/2, and he's never been ridden or really worked with at all. I was thinking next you teach him to yield his hind quarters?

Thanks :)
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post #2 of 3 Old 01-16-2011, 09:49 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Western MA
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the seven parelli games are great groundwork exercises. I also took my 2yo for walks in the woods and around the yard. This was great for leading and 'sacking out' to the world! Good luck and have fun!
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post #3 of 3 Old 01-17-2011, 12:41 AM
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Ground work is the most essential part of a horse's training, and the basics are what will provide a horse with his foundation. I would say the Parelli games are a great start. I know for my horse, when I first got him, he wouldn't respect me at all. It took awhile for me to figure out why he kept being so pushy, and I realized he thought he was in charge and I was part of his herd. The "yo-yo game" I found to be the most benefical for getting him to respect space. I'm not exactly sure why it works, but he accepted me as alpha and hasn't been pushy since then.
As for other things, the porcipine game is a great start for leg work and also respect. When he's tied and you need him to move away, he'll need to understand the yeild to pressure. Push him all over, not just his sides, but his hips, neck, even his nose. Let him learn that moving away from pressure gets rid of the pressure.
Sack him out with everything you can think of. plastic bags, tarps, even throw a saddle pad all over him and on his back. If he's two, you can lean on his back to get him used to having pressure on it.
And of course lunging. Its never to early to teach a horse to lung. It loses up his muscles and also gets him to respect you. You may not be able to ride him yet, but there are plenty of things you can to to have him respect you and also trust you.

~He knows when you're happy
~He knows when you're comfortable
~And he always knows when you have carrots.
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