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How to give a horse confidence?

This is a discussion on How to give a horse confidence? within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

     
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        05-24-2011, 09:41 AM
      #21
    Weanling
    Horses need experience. When they are green and you start riding them out of an arena, you need to ensure that you don't put them in dangerous situations. The more they get ridden and see that you are a confident leader who doesn't put them into a dangerous situation, the more they trust you.
    That said, when it comes down to it, if they see something that truly scares them, they can still react like the horse they are. When that happens, you need them to be trained enough to be able to disengage them and get their attention back to you.
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        05-24-2011, 11:29 AM
      #22
    Trained
    I think in the end, what it all comes down to is how confident YOU are as a handler/rider.

    I have ridden horses over the years that their owners were in awe that the horse didn't buck, bolt, spook, or pull any nonsense with on the trail. Why? Because I'm confident and work the horse in such a way that keeps his focus on me, and not his surroundings.

    Too often, when a horse is focused on something scarey we, as the humans are focused on getting our horse to look at it. Forget about that aspect, and get him to pay attention to you instead; he needs to look to YOU for leadership, not look at the scarey object and keep focusing on that object. Work him around and near those things, but keep him focused on you, don't let his mind wander to the thing he wants to stop and spook at, keep his feet moving, and his mind engaged.
         
        05-24-2011, 01:03 PM
      #23
    Green Broke
    I've said the same thing mom2pride. It isn't about giving the horse confidence per say. It is all about the rider. If you are trained, in control of your emotions, can refocus an animals attention to you and confident in yourself, this will give a horse his confidence.

    What you are concerned with is "the what ifs". Don't focus on that. Because that is where your body becomes tight, tense and out of control. That is felt right down to the horse. I had to train myself how to breath, what to focus on when my horse saw a scary object and how to be the one to show her she wouldn't die if she passed by an object. That in itself gave her confidence and trust that her rider wouldn't put her in a dangerous situation. Start small. Work up to the big. Baby steps.
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