operating with a "feel"
Tonight I stumbled upon a video of this guy I've never heard of before. But, I can see that he has a wonderful handle on how to operate on a feel. The way he is working with this filly is exactly how my own trainer works with horses and what I have been working on learning. There are no big hysterics or leaping around or machismo or games. It's really watching the horse, where it's mind is, when it will move each foot, and learning how to match yourself with the horse. Then, in time, the horse will learn to match itself to YOU.
Please watch this very slow work . It may not look like much but there's a world of difference between this and what you might see in Clinton Anderson or even Parelli.
It's a bit chopped up...showing the successful takes, of course. To me, it's the same concept as other trainers, just another approach. It is an approach I like...I train the no drama way, not needing to get myself or the horse in hysterics. It is teaching the horse communication, while the human communicates patiently, consistently and effectively.
I'd heard Brent's name around but had never seen his stuff till now. Dude's pretty good! Nice filly too. Very open and inquisitive.
I don't mind if a video is chopped up. I look at these sessions as a whole, knowing full-well that they have their ups and downs. What matters is the overall impression you make on the horse, not just today but over the years of their life. Though at the same time, maybe it would be more honest of us to show more of the less-comfortable moments too. So that for the people watching, if they try to learn this stuff at home they might not be so surprised when it's not peaceful 100% of the time. I wonder if we haven't created an unrealistic expectation of that, when the reality is that working with horses sometimes looks like a whole range of expression! This particular filly is pretty calm though. Well done!
Ian, I like you idea that we should be shown the rough with the smooth. When I first started watching clinicians videos I would wonder how on earth they kept everything so calm all the time, where I would have the occasional struggle. I then started watching James Roberts regularly in person and realised that even the great horsemen have problems from time to time. It was a liberating realisation that it is OK for it to go wrong now and then. Just work through it, stay positive and move on.
Ian, I think you are dead right there, just showing the “good bits” I think leads a lot of people who “train” horses, that is, get a decent going horse and ride them and change them about to suit their riding style, think that it is all sunshine, lollipops and rainbows; then they have the gall to call abuse when they see what it actually takes to train a horse. That’s my guess where a lot of the “natural horsemanship” people are at.
In terms of this guy, I have never heard of him but when I saw him paying attention to where the horses feet are when he asks something of them with the lounging his stock sky rocketed in my opinion; he is pedalling gold there. And its a lovely little filly to boot.
Oh yeah, I had a look at your thread where you had a bunch of videos too, some nice looking gear, well done man.
Apparently, he hasn't made many videos. I dont' know anything about him. I just stumbled upon that video and saw that he worked , and spoke , differently.
he talks about puttinga feel on the rope , and he waits for the filly's mind to follow the rope before asking her to bring her front end around in the turns of direction. He is syncing his "asks" with her readiness with her feet, so that it is more likely to be successful, and make more sense to the horse.
He's the only one I've seen that talks about the importance of having the horse able to accept the scary thing WHILE moving, not just while standing.
As for scary things on the move it is a basic to be able to play friendly game with sticks, strings, coats whatever whilst moving. If you don't test it on the move you could find you are dealing with an extreme scared introverted horse who blocks things out when stood still, but watch out when you move him.
Mark Rashid has a whole DVD called "Footfall" which describes timing cues to movement of feet. (Beware. Take a strong caffeine hit before you watch it. It's very good but Mark is the only guy who can send me to sleep quicker than Pat:-))
What I am trying to say is that most good horsemen think in the terms you describe and the fact that Brent also thinks in these terms doesn't make him unique, but does mean that he has the right attitude to teaching and could well be a very good horseman.
Interesting video, thanks for posting it! I like the trainer's calmness and patience, waiting for the filly to react rather than trying to make her react. This reminds me a lot of Brannaman. I've seen videos of him where something didn't necessarily go as planned, yet he never looses his cool...and he never blames the horse.
The words you describe are much like the words Buck Brannaman uses when decribing his methods in working a horse. Not sure if you have heard of him or not but he is very much about following a feel and moving the feet. Peter Campbell and Buck are deciples of Tom Dorrance training. I thoroughly recommend watching Buck's videos - he's got quite a few on YouTube.
nice video to watch, he has a very nice manner.
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