Other "soft" styles of training - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 24 Old 09-30-2009, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: California
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Other "soft" styles of training

This section is labeled "Natural Horsemanship".
What other types or styles have you used in training OTHER THAN P.P.?

What parts have you found useful or a waste of time?

Please share some of the persons system for those that might not be familiar with their training or notoriety.
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post #2 of 24 Old 09-30-2009, 04:16 PM
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Northern Utah
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Ray Hunt is my personal hero and I think he does just about everything the way it should be done. I also like Dennis Reis and Curt Pate. With few exceptions, the less crap they try to sell the better I like them. I met Craig Cameron once and heard him say to a man that ask about the difference in his stick and others and Craig said that it did'nt matter if you went to Wal-Mart and bought the cheapest fishing pole they had and tied the sack you carried it out of the store in to the end the horse wouldn't care and if you used it right it would make no difference.
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post #3 of 24 Old 10-01-2009, 12:33 AM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Californian
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Ray Hunt....I was lucky enough to of gone to one of his final clinics. What an awesome teacher! I've got his book as well as Tom Dorrance's book and wow. both of these men, their ideas and analysis of the horse has helped me the most to make sense of things and more so, make it work.

I got certifed through John Lyons and got a good outline for training.

Dennis Reis is one of the best. He explains the hell out of everything, down to it all and is a great inspiration. I've followed his ideas and methods to get past some pretty rough issues with horses.

One horse in particular, a 6 yr old Tennesee Walker that had lived on a Colorado range his whole life as a stallion on 2,000 acres. Was pulled off the ranch, gelded, branded, vaccinated, and stuffed into a trailer, incarcerated in a cynder block "cell" (stall with nothing but a tiny window to the outside)...all within a very short period of time..... was a "karate kicker"....and with the help of Dennis Reis' training ideals, it took me 2 weeks to get him to relax and start to get some good ground manners.

Clinton Anderson has taught me to push the horse harder (in a good and fair way) and has bolstered my training methods with lots of troubled horses as well as with unbroke horses....to get them started.

I've also learned A LOT from Chris Cox. I think this guy kicks big time butt. Every chance I get, I'll see him in person, and he's amazing. To the point and direct. I think he's more of a trainer's trainer, though, as some of the stuff he does, I wouldn't recommend to a beginner.

I like Clinton Anderson's ground work that mixes in with John Lyons bridlework.....

I like Richard Winters, too, but some of the stuff he does, I wouldn't teach to beginners. He's proven that this so called "natural horsemanship" (or whatever you want to call it...training without the trauma/nor inflicting pain).....is a great basic foundation for Western Pleasure, which is what he does.

Stacey Westfall, a reining competitor like Clinton Anderson, also proves that this psychological approach to training works great for her chosen discipline. I like that she takes it a step further and goes bridleless with a lot of her stuff, but beginning with basically the same ground work as CA does.

The way I see it.....everybody has their own approach, slightly different than each....but the basic ideas and psycological approach is the same....the human is taking the lead role, just like a horse would take the lead role.

I really love this approach as it's proven time and again, easier on the horse and easier on me. And I get real respect and trust, not fear.
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post #4 of 24 Old 10-01-2009, 01:46 AM
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Higgins, TX. YeeHaw!!
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I like to watch anyone who is simple, direct, and to the point. I use a mixture of methods that I learned from watching my Dad and stuff I have learned on my own. Billy Allen is a good personal friend and though he may not be the best horseman out there, he got the job done very well. I watch some on RFD-TV and though most of what is shown there is more entertaining than educational, every now and then, I will see a method for doing something that I hadn't thought of before so I incorporate that. There are a couple that I can't stand to watch though, PP with his circus act and Ryan Gingrich is just an idiot. 3 separate spots on the side, each meaning a separate thing?? Maybe for an advanced reining or ranch horse but those everday trail/backyard riders don't need that on their horse nor will they be able to use it effectively. If you can't keep it straight when you are talking about it, they won't be able to keep it straight when they are doing it. For most everyday people who just ride for fun, simpler is better; legs for go and scoot your butt over, reins for stop and turn. I can put the finesse and complex cues on a horse but I choose not to because I don't really need it and if someone else rides my horse, they sure don't need it. I don't understand why people have to believe that working with horses has to be so complicated, therefore, the trainers have to make it seem complicated so that they can keep thier job. I do enjoy watching Dennis Reis because he is closer to how I train than anyone else, more hands on and he doesn't *****foot around a young horse. He teaches respect in a way that the horse understands without all the hooplah and fancy equipment. Cameron kinda bugs me, not because he isn't a decent trainer (though he is a bit too much "cowboy") but because his voice is annoying LOL.

I guess what I'm saying is that I like anyone who simply and effectively gets the job done without the 3 ring circus or uber complex cues that even confuse themselves.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #5 of 24 Old 10-01-2009, 08:58 PM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Florida
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If I hadn't found Parelli, I sure as heck hope I would have found Denis Reis. I have a ton of respect for him, he's an excellent horseman and a beautiful rider.
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post #6 of 24 Old 10-02-2009, 01:09 AM
Join Date: May 2009
Location: CO
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I like Dennis Reis, Clinton Anderson, Stacey Westfall, and Chris Cox; I've used alot of their methods in different situations with different horses. I think its good to study alot of different trainers, because each one has different perspectives on handling horses, that you might not get from one trainer alone.

"The ideal horseman has the courage of a lion, the patience of a saint, and the hands of a woman..."
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post #7 of 24 Old 10-02-2009, 05:15 AM
Join Date: Jun 2009
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I really enjoy Johnathan Fields. He helped me so much when I first got Cougar. I had Cougar a week when I took him to one of his clinics. Cougar was a foot stomping, biting, bucking, barging whirl wind of trouble. He's a good spirited, direct, fair and positive horse trainer. He started out doing Parelli but I do believe he's branched out and is doing his own thing now.

He's also easy on the eyes. So that's always nice.
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post #8 of 24 Old 10-03-2009, 08:38 AM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: central PA
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I saw Tommy Garland once at a horse expo, He works with a lot of kids and 4Hrs which appeals to me because my daughter is in 4H Horse club and we are pretty active in her club.
I thought his approach to working with the kids was pretty good , straight and simple and he gave a discount to any 4H member that day which was nice considering how pricey the dvds are these days. I really dont know much about him having just seen him once.
I have also seen Clinton Anderson ( have a few of his dvds) and Chris Cox who my husband likes for the simple fact that "he tells you like it is and doesnt sugar coat things"( my husbands words..lol)

I dont have RFDTV , but when the horse expo comes to my area I do try to take in as many demos as I can...

Oh and I forgot to add that about a year ago I participated in a clinic with Frank Bell accredited trainer with my horse Radar , he was really good ...you didnt need alot of equipment (sticks etc...) I think at one point he said a old car antennae would do ...mostly we used a halter and leads. Frank Bell has more of a gentle approach as well.

Horses and children, I often think, have a lot of the good sense there is in the world.
Josephine Demott Robinson
Feed, muck, groom, ride. Repeat daily!

Last edited by RadHenry09; 10-03-2009 at 08:44 AM.
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post #9 of 24 Old 10-03-2009, 03:23 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: SE Kansas
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I just thank the Lord any of them are out there. Training a horse through trust, respect and communication is a world away from the old horse "breaking" method that used fear, pain and forced control. I feel fortunate to have a partnership with my horse that utilizes the natural method.
That said, I'm like many of the other posters in that I employ different methods and mentors all under the "natural" moniker.

"Until one has loved an animal, part of one's soul remains unawakened..."
- Anatole France
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post #10 of 24 Old 10-03-2009, 05:29 PM
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Location: western Kentucky
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Chris Cox who my husband likes for the simple fact that "he tells you like it is and doesnt sugar coat things"( my husbands words..lol)

^I have to agree with that 100%. I also like Craig Cameron, smrobs I have to disagree with you on that one I don't think he makes things too cowboy.

I do respect Clinton Anderson but to me he is too much of a reiner, and I understand the other guys better

Smrobs I will have to remember that "PP with his circus act" i agree and I think that about fits him and his stuff.

A good cowboy always has a better horse at the end of the ride, a poor cowboy will be afoot reguardless of the horse.

Mis Raices Estan Aqui (my roots are buried here)
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