dobushfarm.typepad.com > Training Methodology

Pies first test

Pies first test

Most horses aren't balanced or coordinated enough to do steady dressage until their late threes or early fours. Mentally horses aren't ready for long lessons either. Most of the lateral movement will be taught at the walk for young horses. Strength for trotting and collection takes a couple years. This is why I can't emphasize enough to trail ride three year olds. I start most two year olds driving or at least pulling a light drag. Pushing a young horse will make them bitter and not enjoy their job ahead.


Tiki and I

Tiki and I

When a horse is four or five steady jumping training can begin. Not all horses like to jump, but if they are taught slowly and allowed for their confidence to grow, most like it. Rushing a young horse will not only damage it physically, but mentally as well. I like three year olds to do a lot of trail riding, get to see the world and not be confined to a ring. Late three to early four, dressage begins. A good jumper must have a solid dressage foundation.


Ground driving

Ground driving

Here is a two year old warm blood that has more legs than body. He has already accepted tack and had a person sit on him. He won't be ridden until next year but he already has all of the basics. On long lines he can shoulder in, shorten and lengthen stride. He is very light on the bit. Next year he will be ready to ride down the trail that he has already been driven down. Puddles, sticks, dogs and traffic are already safe obstacles for him to maneuver about and he hasn't even had a rider yet.


Nordi and Anne

Nordi and Anne

What to do with a two year old? Anne learned how to desensitize her young Paso Fino, then she taught him to give to pressure and some voice commands. With these techniques put together, Anne now has a polite two year old that ground drives and pulls a drag. Now he get used to traffic and leaving the barn. By the time he is three, getting on his back is not problem. Nordi and Anne have spent so much time together they will already have a very strong bond and a working relationship.


Lounging Sage

Lounging Sage

I also work with the horse's owner. Even though this horse is in his twenties, his owner Christine is just learning the importance of lounging. Now Christine can warm up her older horse and get him focused on her. Now Christine is safer because she has a focused horse, and Sage is less prone to injury because he is properly warmed and stretched. A horse can have all the education in the world, but it doesn't help if the owner doesn't know what to do.


Joker and I

Joker and I

Joker was my first pony. I may have not realized it at the time, but he taught me the importance of patience. If he hadn't been such a compassionate and patient pony with me, I most likely wouldn't be a trainer today.