How do you define 'Natural Horsemanship'? - Page 2

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How do you define 'Natural Horsemanship'?

This is a discussion on How do you define 'Natural Horsemanship'? within the Natural Horsemanship forums, part of the Training Horses category

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    06-29-2009, 04:43 PM
Quoted for truth. Kind of like 'amen'.
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    06-29-2009, 04:56 PM
Aha, Thank you. LOL. I feel so behind the times. {:)
    06-29-2009, 05:11 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by smrobs
you have to be as gentle as possible but as firm as necessary. Sometimes that means a swift kick or a solid pop and other times it means a soft hand on the neck and a gentle word.

That sums it up pretty darn good

I learned from the very best --- my Grandpap. He was right up there with the Dorrance brothers.

I had no idea what a lucky kid I was until I got to be a LOT older.

Aome of the stories I read on these forums really makes me appreciate what a grand gentleman and horse trainer my Grandpap was.

The NH premise was a good one in the beginning, but like all good things, got spoiled by greed.

No, you certainly do not need all those "tools". And heaven forbid, we broke all our horses to ride and drive on the tractor lane.

Learned their leads on that tractor lane too -- how DID we figure out to make them do that?

Took the roughness out of their trots and lopes in the freshly plowed fields every spring, under the strict guidance of our Grandpap, so we wouldn't overwork the horse - simple, effective and probably took a lot less time than going round and round in a round pen.

NO ONE had a roundpen or an arena unless they lived out West or were the children of someone rich and went to an expensive training barn for lessons.

There came to be a lot of new horse owners who didn't have a family member or friend to turn to for horse help. Along comes the NH trainers to help these folks.

Too bad it all got ruined. I have no use for any of them.

If a person wants to truly understand the inner workings of a horse which, ultimately, helps a person understand how to train EACH INDIVIDUAL horse, I highly recommend

    06-29-2009, 06:45 PM
Working with the horse, not against it, using THEIR psychology, not human psychology. Putting ourselves in their shoes. Understanding his ideas, his fears, his needs, and not making him feel wrong for acting like a prey animal. Never ever putting our goals before our principles. Becoming more horse than man, willing to change ourselves for our horse. Not using gadgets and mechanical devices to achieve results, but working with the horse in a way that develops him mentally and emotionally before physically.

There are so many things NH means, at least to me.
    06-29-2009, 08:33 PM
Okay, question part b...

How does 'natural' horsemanship differ from 'conventional common sense' horsemanship?
    06-29-2009, 09:13 PM
The topic of NH is quite sensitive on these boards, but in my opinion I agree completely with what has been said. I've been taught to use my common sense. Horsemanship is just that, you use your common sense and communicate with your horse accordingly. I see so many people ignore their instincts and turn to these money makers, and only end up getting more confused than they originally were. Smrobs is completely right... I know of a perfect example where force had to be used. My friend had a youngster who associated her as the herd leader, which is what we all aim for... but he also thought of her as someone he could play with... obviously us humans couldn't handle a horse trying to mount or leap at us playfully... she didn't want to scold him and tell him he wasn't allowed to play, but she didn't want to get hurt either. She came up with the idea of "what would a mare do in her position?" -- she'd kick him to get out of her space. So, the next time said horse got excited at her arrival and came flying up behind her to play, she backed into him, lifted her leg but slapped him across the chest with her hand as if she had kicked him. It was incredibly effective, he didn't do it again.
So I'm a firm believer in understanding herd/horse dynamics and rely on my common sense to help myself through most situations. I don't believe in spending a lot of money for equipment that would no doubt end up not being used.
    06-29-2009, 11:19 PM
Originally Posted by Misfit    
Okay, question part b...

How does 'natural' horsemanship differ from 'conventional common sense' horsemanship?
It doesn't.

The NH title was coined by Parelli for marketing purposes, because it sounds warm and fuzzy. And frankly, it worked, didn't it? Welcome to the USA home of capitolism.

The thing is...when you say, "NH" people automatically figure you're not going to break out the stud chain and start yanking on the horse, whipping the horse or tying his leg up to make him stand still, you're not going to be a rough neck,.....

Working with the horse, not against it, using THEIR psychology, not human psychology. Putting ourselves in their shoes. Understanding his ideas, his fears, his needs, and not making him feel wrong for acting like a prey animal. Never ever putting our goals before our principles. Becoming more horse than man, willing to change ourselves for our horse. Not using gadgets and mechanical devices to achieve results, but working with the horse in a way that develops him mentally and emotionally before physically.

There are so many things NH means, at least to me.
Me too.

This is the same stuff that Ray Hunt and Tom Dorrance.... first started telling people and Parelli and Lyons and all else, took those ideas and ran with them to "revamp" horsemanship for the new horse owners who aren't fortunate enough to of grown up with a grandpappy teaching them common sense when handling horses.

It's not training for the horse, it's training for the human. Lots of horse owners nowadays have no idea what to do when their horse runs them over, or bucks them off....they don't know why...they don't know what to do.

So, here comes Parelli, Lyons, Clinton Anderson, etc... with a step by step clear way of handling their problems.

How is that bad?

I train using all of techniques that came from Dorrance and Hunt through Lyons and C.Anderson and all is nothing more than common sense. But I didn't have a grandpappy to teach me the ropes. I didn't grow up around horses, I sure as hell couldn't train one, let alone fix any issues caused by bad handling..... til I started to read and study all the "NH" stuff....that made training into an easy way of understanding the horse.

I always tell people, they don't need anything special to train, and have been able to prove it. Just a full cheek or a dee ring snaffle bit, a web or rope halter (doesn't matter which nor doesn't matter if it's an "official" anyone brand)....doesn't matter what kind of lead rope, or whatever....
I haven't found a horse yet that cares what I use....he cares about how I use it.

Does the Sampson rope or the ropes like it make things easier? You bet. I like the feel of those ropes and I've found websites where I can get the exact same stuff for cut rate prices.

It does peeve me to hear people say that you need special stuff and to spend an incredible amount of money to "get it"....because I know that you don't. You can use whatever you've got from your local tack shop that's on sale.

I've used $8 halters, web halters, regular rope, heavy rope, light Sampson rope....doesn't matter. One has better feel than the other? Sure. But is it necessary? No.

I am glad for the "NH" stuff coming out to the public, because for the past 30 years, it's caused people who would otherwise resort to harsh tactics (beatings, real cruelty) realize that none of that is necessary....that there's a "better" way. A humane way to train and retrain's training for the human and the horse, mostly for the human. That's what sets it apart from regular horsemanship, too, I think. Instead of blaming the horse, NH suggests to see what you're doing to cause or not cause things to happen.

As Ray Hunt liked to say...the horse is never wrong.

So, what if NH has a label. Everything has a label if you want to sell it to the public. If it was just called common sense regular horsemanship, that would be fine. But it isn't. So, who cares? The label has gotten people to see and think about their horses a good way. And frankly, I think that's all that matters.
    06-29-2009, 11:30 PM
Green Broke
Actually, it's got people to spend hundreds and hundreds of dollars that they don't need to. It's crippled people in their training and moving forward because they can't get a head until they do game number whatever or watch number 3 in the DVD series or they buy the carrot stick.

It's ridiculous.

You don't need that crap. If you aren't comfortable being around horses you need to find someone that is and work with them. Or find a reputable trainer.

Natural Horsemanship isn't natural horsemanship anymore. It left the real meaning a long time ago. Today's Natural Horsemanship is nothing but $$$$.
    06-30-2009, 02:01 AM
I sort of agree with everyone that NH has moved onto $$$ .
Parelli is a case in point - anyone remember his book with a pic of him sat on his horse with no gear at all - now you can buy all the parelli rig for huge ammount of $$$ - parelli will say that HIS rig is better than everyone else's and that if you want to do HIS programme then you need HIS rig.

NH to me is just a load of old BS for people to make money.
    06-30-2009, 08:19 AM
I remember the first time I saw a Parelli catalog. I was working at a feed store and glanced through the pages and busted out laughing with the definition of each product. That man and all of the others have been a burden to me ever since. I don't think a day goes by when I don't here one of their names or have a run in with one of their unsuccessful followers. A couple years ago, I called it common sense horsemanship on a forum and several people got mad at me saying it wasn't common sense and people needed to be taught. Funny, huh?

The biggest problem that I find with the horses produced from this program is the disguise that they are hiding behind. The horses and the people find security and "release of the pressure" from succeeding in the exercise that they are doing. To look through that horses eyes, feel the energy from that horse, that horse is always mad, they are obedient, but angry. The people think that if the horse performs what it is supposed to perform, then the horse has succeded, it behaved....

I have seen someone trying to push a horse with a fractured hip to try and jump cow barrels. I have seen a horse scared out of its mind stand on a tractor tire, only to run over someone later on.

My husband and I usually watch downunder horsemanship for the comedy value, and I'm not talking about Clinton's "sense of humor".

I guess where I'm getting at is that yes, its all a money making gimmick. I know some people find success with the programs, but I personally have had to fix more horses screwed up by NH followers than ignorant horse owners. The physical issues that show up in hard core NH horses are common beyond belief. Its almost like a plague.

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