I am a first time horse owner. I've had Honey, my very docile TWH, for 2 months. She is 3 and was green broke when I got her. She usually does very well on our trail rides, but mostly because she happily follows the others. I want to work on very basic stuff with her - whoa quickly and consistently, speeding up consistently, etc. I've gotten some training books (Clinton Anderson's Downunder Horsemanship, Easy Gaited Horses: Gentle, humane methods for training and riding gaited pleasure horses by Lee Ziegler), but my impression is that they are more for a horse that already has some basic training, but needs some work at more advanced stuff. I need suggestions for a couple of books on teaching the most basic of skills.
I live in an area where there aren't any real trainers around and the few people who would help me train her would be really rough and I do not approve of their training methods (every horse my "horse expert" neighbor gets on tries to buck him, I swear.). I do not have a lot of riding experience myself (some lessons as a kid, my PE class in college , and riding friend's and neighbor's horses casually).
I've figured out that I need to do lots of ground work with her and have started with that. Her ground manners are really pretty good.
Books I'm considering (but I can't afford to buy them all):
Http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0764570994/ref=ord_cart_shr?%5Fencoding=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&v=glance - Gincy Self Bucklin
Http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1555662498/ref=ord_cart_shr?%5Fencoding=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&v=glance - Mark Rashid
Http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0764540858/ref=ord_cart_shr?%5Fencoding=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&v=glance - Gincy Self Bucklin
Http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1587365413/ref=ord_cart_shr?%5Fencoding=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&v=glance - Michael Hockemeyer
Okay, I guess the first few are more philisophical - but they sound helpful - which one would be best of the first 3 and is the 4th one good - or is there something better?
I did not like Clinton Anderson's use of the "handy stick" to "tap" the horse to get her to move away. Honey is so laid back and spookless that when I tried it, she wouldn't move away unless I'd "tapped" really hard - which I won't do. It just seems strange that he wants you to use the "handy stick" to smack the horse to get them to move, but rub the horse as a reward. I just feel like its sending very mixed messages.
Thanks a bunch!