What the heck is with ALL the Natural Horsemanship trainers now??? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by jaydee View Post
Humans spent thousands of years taking a horse out of the wild and breeding all the 'natural' out of it then suddenly want to turn them back to that - isn't going to happen without some casualties along the way
As more and more NH trainers seem to be spending vast amounts of time doing what really amounts to trick training before they even sit on the horse - which all adds up to more money - I'm thinking there will be a gradual welcomed return to common sense training because its all gone too far now
A good way to judge a trainer is to be able to see their results so I'd be inclined to start there, have your horse well prepared before it goes away so its mentally ready for someone to make that next step
I'm glad you touched on NH trainers doing a lot of "trick training". Asking your horse to side pass with pressure, ok. Doing it the entire length of an areana, is that NH or some kind of "trick" you've taught your horse?

There is a local NH trainer who is ALWAYS advertising with photos of him sitting on a sitting or laying down horse. To me... that ain't natural. It looks really neat, but again. How is that NH? He will brag about how his horse comes when called and will "park herself" at the mounting block. Again, natural or a trick? I will commend him for one thing, he does a lot of work with desensitization, tarps, noodles, flags, bridges, etc, which I think is great because it fosters trust and leadership. With having said that I believe ALL training should foster, if not maintain, respect and trust. You don't need a NH trainer for that, just common sense!
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post #12 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by SnowCowgirl View Post
I just want someone to put 30 days on this colt. I don't need a horse whisperer.

Obviously I know nothing about Natural Horsemanship

The term "Horse Whisperer" was first used in ancient Scotland.
The phrase has been used to describe trainers who have developed methods of working respectfully and gently with horses. That is a bit incomplete and misleading.

You observe the horse, learn from him, and remember that experience.
Then try to find a way to use that to fit in with what you would like the horse to do.
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post #13 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 09:01 PM
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My old BO is an old-school cowboy. Even wears a neckerchief. When I bought my gelding from him, he included 30 days of training in my purchase price (my gelding was a 2yo virtually unhandled and unbroke stud colt when I bought him). The BO stated that he would be doing the training. I was wary at first. After all, cowboys generally use the old cowboy methods that everyone fears, right (basically bronc-busting a horse into submission)? But, I figured since he'd been training horses for over 30 years, it'd be worth a shot.

I'll tell you what. If you hadn't known better, you'd have honest-to-goodness thought it was one of the big name NH trainers working with my boy. He used techniques I've seen Clinton Anderson, Craig Cameron and John Lyons use. He wasn't rough, he wasn't harsh, but he was firm when he needed to be. When I mentioned that his methods were very similar to those used in NH, he said "You mean 'common sense'?"

My point is, just because someone says they're a NH trainer DOES NOT automatically make them a "horse whisperer" or anything of the sort. It usually means they take a common sense approach to training a horse and use methods to create a willing partner who knows what is being asked of him/her and does it with the least amount of pressure possible.

Before you go off saying "I don't want my horse trained by a NH trainer," take the time to educate yourself on what NH really is. THEN make an educated decision on what's best for your horse. If this is the barely-handled 4yo you've talked about, I think he'd benefit greatly from NH, to be honest.
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post #14 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 10:21 PM Thread Starter
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I don't think I ever said I was crossing an NH trainer off the list, did I? I said the idea scares me, because it seems like such a fad. And that makes me want to avoid it. It seems like everyone and their neighbour are a "natural horseman", and I think that using it as a marketing scheme is ridiculous and makes me want to avoid that person.

Common sense, sure. And many cowboys use the common sense approach. But it's marketed as "colt starting", not as "Natural Horsemanship".

I think the term is hokey and it turns me off, that's all. And that's why I started this topic and asked the question. It seems the market is FLOODED by "Natural Horsemanship". I don't want someone to spend weeks playing useless games him, but obviously I appreciate someone who uses common sense in training. Y'know? I want the sense without the bullcrap title, haha.
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Last edited by SnowCowgirl; 04-17-2013 at 10:25 PM.
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post #15 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 10:26 PM Thread Starter
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(sorry had to edit a couple things there)

again, thanks everyone for the replies!
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post #16 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 10:26 PM
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I understand what you mean. Seriously, though, don't let the name scare you.

I don't remember who said it, but someone suggested approaching the trainers (NH or not) as you would any trainer. If they say they're going to play games (which is really a mainly Parelli thing), say "Thanks anyway" and move onto the next.
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post #17 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 11:09 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, that's very good advice. And I'm glad I started this topic because I WAS just totally skipping over anyone with Natural Horsemanship in their ad/website/name. I'm going back now and taking a second look where I definitely wouldn't have before. You're all very right about interviewing everyone equally.
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post #18 of 23 Old 04-17-2013, 11:21 PM
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I use a lot of Clinton Anderson with my gelding. No games or anything like that involved. I gain his respect by moving his feet. "Control the feet and you control the brain." He doesn't sidepass across the arena or any of that other hokey stuff. He knows what I expect of him and does it because he knows that if he doesn't, we'll be in for a serious "Come to Jesus" meeting. Plain and simple. You'll find that unless a NH trainer advertises that they follow a particular trainer, they're likely to take a little bit of each and use what works.
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post #19 of 23 Old 04-18-2013, 09:49 AM
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I 'fess up to having used the phrase "natural horsemanship" to reflect that, if needed, I use yielding exercises to get the horse to move its feet and pay attention and also that I use clear pressure and release cues (instead of martingales, Vienna reins, and other fun bits of kit). This is purely in contrast to people who don't, which around here, is a lot of people.

Parelli is probably the most well-known and widely followed practitioner (of a sort) of these methods. Someone asked me the other day what "horsenality" I think her horse has. I said, "Er, I don't know. I don't really follow that."

And lastly, "The term "Horse Whisperer" was first used in ancient Scotland..."

Wow, really? Interesting claim. Do you have a reference for that? In many respects, there is a lack of knowledge about the lives of people in "ancient" Scotland, presumably meaning Pictish settlements, or Mesolithic settlements, or Neolithic settlements (these are the people who are considered responsible for stone circles) or Iron Age. That's the general understanding in archeological circles of what is meant by "ancient" Scotland. It's surprising that anyone has discovered details that specific from any of those civilizations.
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post #20 of 23 Old 04-18-2013, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by thesilverspear View Post
And lastly, "The term "Horse Whisperer" was first used in ancient Scotland..."
I thought that as interesting to had to see what was on good old Google!!!
There were always people when I was growing up that could have been described as "horse whisperers' because they had some inner quality that seemed to enable them to calm a horse down where others failed - a cousin of my grandfathers that I spent a lot of time with used to take 'impossible' horses to break or sort out and I watched him get them relaxed and settled really fast with no running them round or stuff like that. I know that foxhunter also has memories of someone from her youth that was the same
I did find this which is interesting in itself but how factual it is I don't know
Secrets of The Horse Whisperers
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