Join Date: May 2012
Location: CT USA an English transplant
The best way to bond with a horse is to look after it - food, water, grooming - that's what they appreciate, not being run around, made to do tricks they see no point in or even ridden
That doesn't mean there's no point in doing groundwork but the basics of being led correctly, moving over and backwards should all have been achieved as part of the handling and grooming process that makes a horse safe and easy to be around - not a stand alone thing later on down the line
No horse is too old to be taught something new
I find the easiest way to teach a horse to back up and move over is with firm pressure from your hand and at the same time use a verbal cue and if you are interested in clicker training that's a good time to introduce that. Once they understand the verbal command you can usually just use that and nothing else
I'm not a 'rope wiggler' because I don't always have a rope attached to the horse when I want them to back up - in fact most of the time I don't.