08-11-2013, 12:40 PM
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The key is to get the horse "listening" for sure. You want their MIND "with you" Harry Whitney calls it "with-you-ness"
The horse should learn to be "at the ready" and be "prepared" for what you may ask. The turnbacks on the rail help this because the horse will be always "ready and prepared" with it's body because its mind will be wanting to "listen" for what you want.
If the mind is escaping, leaking - it will show up in the body. Anxiety, worry and trouble - as well as lack of focus, clarity, attention and confidence ....ALL LEAD TO THE BODY not being "with you". That can mean: bracing, resistance, tightness, rushing, stickiness/too slow, dropping shoulders, ribs, trailing hind-end. Any and all manner of body issues can usually be rooted in the "mind" of the horse.
Reduce her worries, anxiety, get her mind/attention/focus on YOU. The key is a quiet, relaxed MIND. That will "show up" in the body :)
Easier said than done! When she feels consistent, clarity from you and gains confidence and understands the relationship and communication, she will start to "turn loose". And that is when you'll be "together". Only then, can your horse "rate" properly, without resorting to physically pulling, picking up, "moving the meat" so to speak :)