I'll start off by mentioning that I'm new to this site, but it looked like a good place to ask this of you: Can you give me ideas, tips, and advice on how to train my new yearling?
So far, my friend (who I'm buying the yearling from) and I are coming up with a simple and very basic plan. Since she's very skittish and shy for a one year old, we're going to start by putting her on a halter and walking her. As I imagine, she'll have separation anxiety since she was never removed from her mother's side. The plan for this problem is to move her across the driveway where mother is still in sight, and simply walk her so she can become comfortable with human contact and figure out what "walking on lead' is all about. After we've gotten her settled, we're going to work on desensitizing her so she won't be skittish at all. And, last but not at all least, we'll place a blanket and untied saddle onto her back. We're not sure if we want to start with a small English saddle, or with his lightweight nylon saddle (western). I'm leaning toward the nylon, since she'll be a pleasure/trail horse.
Her name is April, and I can tell she'll be a very sweet horse. While she is shy, she doesn't really take off unless you walk to her quickly or try to touch her. Today was the first day I went out to visit her. I got a couple sniffs and was watched, but she did graze with me standing only a few feet away. She also just turned 1 (4/18/2011).
So, any ideas, tips, or advice that might help out on our already forming plans would be wonderful. I'm not looking for the quickest way, but rather the smoothest way. I'm giving myself a year to get her set up. Hopefully by then she'll be big enough to start breaking in.