Hi Folks. Hope You are all well.
I got another skin Cancer cut out ( 10 stitches) but didn’t stop the work of course. No drama. They got it complete and on we go. Had the stitches out Wednesday.
THE HORSE THAT BURIED THE A LEVEL COACH
I had the privilege of working with this Horse this Week. Lovely Boy and with a story to tell. He had a certain Sadness about Him and a nervousness that should not be there at this stage of his Career, although he had to be stitched up when he plunged through the Mirror of the indoor of ‘Montserrat’.
The Owner, who was there and filmed it, related that the Horse was ‘collected’ at the walk and reefing it’s Head, just prior to the accident.
The Horse responded well, interacted with me great, is very intelligent, tries very hard but still has a vibe of being a first few Days of the Breaking in, with a vulnerability such that I would not be riding Him yet, at all.
Remember, he had had 6 Weeks with the ‘World Class Trainer’, lunging with the Pessoa and Side Reins and a little Ground Work, that being training the ‘Shoulder in’ on the Ground, with a Whip.
I was particularly interested in his Mouth of course, for he ran through the TWO HANDS of the Trainer, just prior to the smash into the Mirror.
- Front Mouth 2/10
- Lateral Mouth 0/10
I did note, that the Moment I put a Roller and Bridle on Him, he went into a frame by default, even without a contact. This should be completely disregarded should You ever see it, for it is meaningless when it comes to expectation of a Mouth.
So back to the drawing Board for a Week and a Vet check to make sure all is well with Him, prior to riding.
I am pretty sure I know what his issues are………to be continued……..
FAKE NEWS ABC
The ABC is Fake News when it comes to Donald Trump and so are Channel 9 and many of the others. For the true story about the non existent “Russia Collusion” ( which was carried out by Hillary, not Trump) go watch this Bloke.
The ABC are Traitors to Australia, only representing the extreme Left Wing. That is not what I pay for Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
ADVICE TO MY FRIENDS
There is a Drought, in many places. Stock up on Your Hay, TOMORROW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What do you think of tying up after being worked?
Not a problem at all. Every Horse we have ever handled, has been tied up after work, however, the reasons for tying up are only for hosing down, grooming and so on, NEVER, to teach patience or improve tying up, for one should never penalize a Horse ‘after work’ or a job well done. They should be given rewards. Rest, feed, grooming, massage, etc. Never tied up for tying up reasons.
Do you reward them at the end of a session even if they haven’t had their head in the game?
Very difficult question! I always reward, regardless of the success or failure of a session, for I always blame us, not the Horse. The second reason is that the reward, can actually work on the Mind of the Horse, to solve what ever it is that caused a non progressive session, for you never know, it just may help next time. Thirdly, I don’t think a Horse has the ability to relate the reason for no reward because of a non successful session for it was too long in the past.
Why do your Rope Halters not have the extra 2 nots on the nose?
Because those knots were just dreamt up by some Cowboy who likes pain and the nasal Bones/skin area is a very sensitive one. There is nothing a Rope Halter can’t train, that adding knots can and if we don;t have the ability to train with one whereby we need to add knots, we have problems.
Do you get better results with a Soft or Hard Halter with or without the Nose knots?
Results comes from skill and knowledge, not knots. That is like the old “Bigger Bit approach’. Indeed, if the skill of the Human is high, no Halter is needed at all.
Our facilities aren’t great and we don’t have a Sand Round Yard like yours – is that a problem for training?
It’s a problem for the following imho:
- Risk to the Horse
- Risk to the Rider
- Lessened Muscular building
- Soundness questions.
What do I do when our Warmblood Mare is going well at home but when we get to an event she has trouble focusing?
That is an experience thing and a tactics thing. Introductory Horses should NOT be competed. They should have an enjoyable visit, munch grass, bit of NH, trained to stand on NO REIN, take in the scene and go Home. Competing at the first couple of Shows, on a Horse that is struggling, can have more downside than positives, least of all the Ego and ‘Peer Pressure’ effects on the Human doing the riding.
When doing the groundwork with the T/bred Mare she seems to be better in small confined spaces and wants to escape in an Open Spaces. Should I stay in the small space until I have her respect enough to move into the larger space?
That is normal for those for they are ‘Battery Hens’ They are what they have been brainwashed to be.
This is where the big Trail rides are so important. Such Horses have great difficulty in handling BIG VIEWS and we see it often here. Look at this. Our Horses, even though they had ‘been there done that’ they cold not believe the BIG VIEWS upon arrival at Victor Harbor.
The T/bred mare is easily rattled. Should we try to keep her calm during her Groundwork or should we push her to find out her limits?
Keep Her calm but always seek to be improving and probing, within the bounds of fairness. Staying calm on it’s own, often does not achieve the results and yes, Horses do need to be probed to go on. Always a balance.
When I go to catch the T/bred mare she walks away from me but walks up to others. Do you think she doesn’t respect me or does she just know that I mean work?
Wrong deo 🙂
This can be two things. Where multiple Handlers have different duties. One gives carrots, feeding, grooming and the other work. Horses are smart.
It can also be a sign that the Horse perceives a lack of “True Unity’ which can mean that the approach to systems need adjusting. Either way, it is fair to question one’s self. Well done. That is what makes a good Trainer.
How do you know if a horse is working out of fear or respect? Is it their Body Language?
Manure, sweat, whites of eyes, shaking, a lack of focus on the Trainer, looking to look the other way, not at them. The lack of interest in the Trainer and the overall facial expressions.
How do I get a horses brain and focus back on me when they are fixated on something else? Am I doing the right thing by by putting pressure on them by making moving their feet?
Yes, then back off again.
When playing the Seven Games the horse does what I ask but I feel its more out of fear then respect even though I never punish her. How do you know if a horse is working out of fear or respect? Is it their Body Language?
How much pressure should we put on a horse on the ground before we get on and start riding if they appear to be ready to ride. Should we test them out and find their threshold?
I never do. Only do what is required to be done. Take a “Breaker’. If I have done the job over the past Days and am happy with the Trust and relaxation, the only thing I ever do is to lunge for girthiness and get on. If they ride well, I never bother them again, with official games sessions, I only act and expect, good ground manners on a daily basis, minute by minute, going about our normal duties. I concentrate on riding things, not more ground things.
When disengaging a horse in the round yard at liberty she rushes when I go to her HQ’s but if I step out in front of her she stops. However; if I go to her HQ’s whilst on the lead she disengages. Should I just keep her on the lead?
That is just an experience thing and getting to the high end of Training, where most can’t go. Further, the profile of this type of Horse is such that one wouldn’t go there. Keep it simple.
USING THE RUNNING REINS
We don’t have sand in our round yard only grass. Should we work them longer in the Running Reins to compensate for the NO sand?
Technically probably yes but get the Sand as a priority. You can get away with a Truck Load $350 here. Ok, depending on size of yard, 2 to 3 truck loads perhaps but a Truck will do the outside track and the shovel is great exercise 🙂
When tacked up both horses seem to want to trot and not walk. What should I do?
Go Trail Riding…..on the pleasure rein and at the walk. When trotting, be ‘on the bit and round’ until they get the idea. Introduce loopy rein trot, on the Trail, later and in small steps.
When I have them tacked up and on a lead they only want to do small circles around me and not go out wide. How do i get them to go out wider?
I presume You are lunging here??? To make a Horse go wider, ZONE 2 is the focus point, the shoulder. Never Zone 4, the Rump.
Sometimes it take both the horses a while to get down long and low and to relax in the Running Reins. Is this normal?
Yes, especially for those being turned around in habits and Muscle growth. Especially Racehorses.
When the T/bred Mare is tacked up with the Running Reins at liberty seems to want to rush and just canter fast circles. Should I work her on a rope/lunge on her to control her speed or let her put the pressure on herself and wait for her to slow down even if it takes her 20ins and she ends up in a lather of sweat? Or do I try and slow her down by cutting her off as in your Join Up method?
Rushing should not be allowed, ever. It should be controlled. Therefore, put the Horse ( this horse) on the lunge, until worked through that problem. Again, Racehorses. Once again, size of round pens help here. Larger than 15 Metres diameter makes it far more difficult for the Trainer and tends to promote this behavior. Yes, my system can be used but only if it is working, at that time and on that horse. Otherwise, you will stir up the Horse more. Once again, gets back to experience.
If appears harder for a horse to go long and low when they are rushing, am I right?
Yes it is. Rushing should NEVER be allowed, in any horse Training.
When starting under saddle should we start with a Rope Halter, Bosal or Bit?
Clinton Anderson says that you shouldn’t put a bit in a horses mouth until they are bending softly in a hackamore or halter. Do you agree?
No, I don’t. He teaches to who ever will spend the next $$$. I teach to the lowest common denominator. Rope Halters and Hackamores should NEVER be allowed near Amateurs. They simply cannot do it, can’t learn it. It is a ridiculous statement and indeed, a ‘Risk Management’ issue. Amateurs require Bits.
Indeed. Few People in the Horse Industry, can EVER gain the experience and feel, to use a Hackamore. He means and this is, a Hackamore.
This is mine. It is like doing a University course to learn this. I did.
Go read the Book
Now to the words BENDING SOFTLY. Get out of it!!! You are dealing with Amateurs. They don’t and won;t understand the principal and never will. Half the Dressage Riders don’t get Bend and basically very few of the Hack World. Let’s get in the real World. The Yanks have got to Clinton 🙂
What do we do if they want to grab the bit when they are going Long and Low?
Any time a horse snatches the bit, I block momentarily as we don’t want ignorant mouths. So it seems like hitting a brick wall to the horse. Only follow and soften if he takes the feel out and down gently with an even feel. Any reefing has to be uncomfortable as it isn’t a desired response. It doesn’t matter in which direction even if downward it must be reprimanded and never encouraged.
What do we do when a horse is on the pleasure rein and wants to always head back to the gate or go their own way on a trail ride? It feel like we are constantly having to steer them which seems to defeat the purpose of working on a pleasure rein.
Go Trail Riding. Trail Riding cannot happen on a Home Property. It is anti productive and causes all this stuff. Indeed, Trail Riding in a Home Paddock of a Horse is to dishonor the place of rest. There should be a place of work and one of rest.
If a Horse attempts to ignore the Rider to get back to the Home base, at Home or leaving Home, they need to be disciplined. That discipline needs to get the job done on Day dot and not have to be used again. Just shake them up and send them in the direction you ask.
Almost every ‘Breaker’ I have met, when put on the arena, will ( between Day 1 and 3, depending on their personality) try you at the Gate. It must be dealt with assertively, at that point, so that it doesn’t happen again. In this case, with my tools, it will be a double split rein down the offending shoulder, near the gate.
What is the best thing to do when a horse rushes on the pleasure rein?
Never allow it in the first place. Either under Saddle or on the Ground. The selection of Tools are:
- Bending the Horse
- Doing more difficult movements, even if the horse has not learnt them. Shoulder in, leg yield, etc. (immediately on the bit of course) then release again.
- Diminished Circles on an arena. Tighten, tighten to control speed, enlarge as reward……….
- The Backup is the tool on the Trail. Western Training, added to the English Horse, to achieve a pleasure rein. ( at the walk)
- Alternate between Pleasure Rein and proper Dressage, to control rushing. Control it with the Dressage, reward it with the Pleasure. German Training Scale!
Norton is the Horse Dealer who put Nina Morgan in a Wheel Chair. I bet she doesn’t look like this in the Supreme Court lol
but I do hope Her Silicone Busts for Her.
Best of Luck Nina!!!!!!!!!
WARNING ON QUEENSLAND HORSE DEALER WHO DOG’S THE ‘LOVED ONE’S
A Queensland woman has issued a warning to horse owners having been left devastated after she gave away her beloved Darling to a “forever home”, only for the animal to reappear at a local dogger’s yard.
Regina Pandurovic lives on a rural property in the outskirts of Brisbane, and made the difficult decision to re-home 19-year-old mare Darling when her own health began to decline.
Regina posted a photo of the horse to Facebook, and advertised Darling as a sweet-natured and gentle family horse. She wasn’t to be ridden due to her bad hips, but she would make for an excellent companion.
Shortly after, Regina was contacted by a woman named Sarah Reynell.
Ms Reynell, reportedly based in Dubbo in New South Wales, wanted to know more about Darling and was keen on picking up the horse as soon as possible.
“I spoke to Sarah over the phone and she told me she needed a companion mare for her young horses.”
Ms Reynell came to visit the property on March 27, and decided she would take Darling.
With some coaxing, Darling was loaded into a stock crate and was carted off to go to what Regina believed would be her new “forever home”.
While Regina said she was upset to say goodbye, she said she believed she was doing the right thing by her mare.
Regardless, Regina wanted to make sure Darling had settled into her forever home.
She messaged Ms Reynell and asked her to let her know how Darling settled into her new paddock, and if she handled the journey well.
“I didn’t hear back, so in the morning I texted again and asked if she settled in alright. She said ‘she’s settling in great, I got home half an hour ago and will send photos tomorrow’,” Regina said.
When Regina messaged again about a photo, Ms Reynell said she was away for work and she would send a photo as soon as she could.
Regina never received a photo of Darling, and said she was becoming worried.
“At this point, I’m going hang on, something’s not quite right,” she said.
And soon, she became even more suspicious. One night on Facebook, Regina was scrolling through her news feed when she stopped to look at a photo a local dogger’s yard had posted on their page.
Regina began her search for Darling, who was recognisable by her white markings, earlier this year. She’s since returned home.
Photo: Regina Pandurovic
“The dogger has a Facebook page where he advertises horses for re-sale to private homes,” she said.
“I saw a photo, and in the background, I saw a horse that I thought was Darling.
“I ended up messaging him and asked if she had come through.”
A dogger is a colloquial term for a person who sells horses on to a knackery. The horses are then slaughtered and processed, often for pet food.
They are also known as “last chance dealers” – meaning if no one picks up a horse in their care and they are unable to fetch a reasonable price for it, they will sell the animal on to a knackery.
After some back and forth, Regina eventually had her answer.
“[The dogger’s yard owner] rang me, he goes ‘yes, I bought the mare’.”
Darling was not with a new companion as Regina says she was promised, and had in fact been sold to a dogger’s yard based out of a Queensland town.
At the time Darling was at the dogger’s yard, Regina was told there were “several horse kills in the time she was there”.
The yard she was sold to is also very clear about its role: “many of these horses listed… are what one would call “Doggers or Project” Horses”, the company website reads.
“We do indeed send horses to the meatworks and many of the ones we have advertised here may well deserve another chance.
“Not all the horses advertised here are Doggers – the horses destined for meatworks will have a “D Day” on their ad.”
Later, Regina also found out Ms Reynell had allegedly hired the dogger’s yard’s truck in order to transport her horse.
When Regina picked up Darling after paying $550 for her safe return, she found she had suffered a significant laceration to her face.
“I got the money together somehow – my children gave me money from their savings to buy her back,” Regina said.
“She is slowly recovering but is still not her old self.”
The dogger’s yard Ms Reynell sold the mare to said the mare had suffered the laceration and eye infection prior to coming into their care, but offered to put $100 towards the vet bill of the animal.
The injury and infection Darling allegedly received at some point during her time away from Regina.
Ms Reynell has also denied the mare became injured while she was in her care.
“Once I had composed myself, I put a post on Facebook telling Darling’s story,” Regina said.
“Never in my wildest dreams I could have imagined to hear from so many other horse owners.”
Regina’s story has racked up hundreds of shares, and her story has recently made its way into the Western Australia horse community.
A post stating Ms Reynell was operating in Chidlow, a small town about an hour outside of Perth, was shared more than 3000 times accompanied by a screenshot from her Facebook page detailing her transport routes.
It’s understood Ms Reynell agreed to transport horses on a route between Seymour in Victoria to Chidlow between December 4 and 8 last year.
When the post regarding her transport business was shared, stories regarding Ms Reynell began to flood social media.
Fairfax Media has spoken to five other horse owners who say they gave up their horses to Ms Reynell and had not recieved communication past the point of handing over their animals.
Tracey Whitney, who lives about two-and-a-half hours west of Gympie, said she also had dealings with Ms Reynell.
She had replied to an advertisement previously regarding someone from the Gold Coast looking for a companion horse.
Her gelding, 19-year-old King, was a happy and gentle animal who loved children.
Tracey’s own children had outgrown King so he was looking for a new family – on a free lease of course, so she wouldn’t have to say goodbye completely.
When the sale fell through, Tracey forgot about her Facebook comment until she recieved a private message.
“Sarah messaged me asking if I still had a companion horse. I said ‘well, he’s sort of with other horses at the moment’,” she said.
“But then Sarah said she had a 10-year-old [girl] who’s looking for a really, really quiet horse. So I said okay – because he’s really good for kids, and he loves kids.
“I told her the story that I bred his mum, I bred him, and when her child was done with him, he’ was to come back to me, so he could just retire and live out his days.
“I thought this would be a great move as he could go to Pony Club – he loves all that, feeling important.
“She came with a black truck. It was silly of me but I just took her word, because when I’ve given my word, I’ve stuck by them. Other people I’ve given horses to have stuck by theirs … but there’s always one.
“Two days later I texted her and said ‘hey where’s the photo, how is he?’
“And it was ‘Oh sorry, I broke my phone, I’ll get a photo to you within the next couple of days’.
“There was no word from her, so I messaged her again and tried to call her. She wouldn’t answer the phone call, so I thought maybe she didn’t want to be harassed all the time by the ex-owner.
“I let it lie, and I’d try again in a month. She then didn’t reply again.”
Tracey is still attempting to locate King.
Photo: Tracey Whitney
Deirdre Steb was also looking to find a permanent home for her 20-year-old mare Rosepark Lady she was unable to keep due to issues with her property, and was contacted on Facebook by Ms Reynell.
Deirdre said she would only be giving away the animal if Ms Reynell could confirm she would not be sold onto doggers, and she would have a forever home.
In a text message, Ms Reynell “guaranteed” the horse would have a permanent home.
The horse was picked up on January 3, and Ms Steb asked for photos of the animal settling into its new home.
Ms Reynell said the mare was “going really well”, and the horse was “in a large paddock running with other mares”.
Deirdre again asked for a photo but never recieved pictures. After repeatedly following up about a photo of the horse, Ms Reynell said she could not send Deirdre a photo as her horse had died in the paddock due to natural causes about three weeks earlier.
Deirdre was unable to keep of 20-year-old Rosepark Lady due to issues with her paddock flooding and an inability to grow grazing grass.
She said she hadn’t wanted to tell Deirdre about the development because of her “threatening” messages asking about the horse.
In another instance, Ms Reynell told Queensland woman Emily Uebergang she was unable to provide a photo of their horse Sprite in his new home as the animal had died in a paddock after a truck had driven through the property and struck it.
Sprite was used mainly for riding.
Ms Reynell declined to comment about the specifics of each allegation, but said she strongly refuted them all.
Both Deirdre and Tracey have contacted their local knackeries and last-chance dealers following further information about Ms Reynell becoming public, but have run into trouble as there is little regulation around recording horses that come through knackery doors.
In some cases, knackeries accept horses from trusted last-chance dealers with no record.
The Australian Equine Unification Scheme, a collection of volunteers and members dedicated to promoting regulation change in the horse industry, said they had received three individual reports from horse owners who have previously had contact with Ms Reynell.
AEUS report coordinator Justine Curatolo said there needed to be a change in the way the Australian horse industry keeps track of its animals.
“Currently there appears to be a… widespread systematic industry which profits significantly… from unwanted horses,” she said.
“This is occurring Australia-wide with many well publicized examples of horses being intentionally put through livestock horse sales.
“These horses are being accepted by the saleyard manager and then sold on to either a private buyer or a kill buyer with money changing hand… horses are repeatedly being sold.”
A spokesperson for AEUS agreed with Ms Curatolo’s assessment, and said there continued to be issues with horse identification nationwide.
“The major issue is the lack of traceability of horses here in Australia,” she said.
“Europe, England and other countries have provided horse traceability via registration for several years leaving Australia, embarrassingly, a long way behind when it comes to horse welfare and traceability.
“We speak to many distraught owners who have lost their horses… who never find their pets ever again. This is a horrific feeling. Not knowing if your horse is out there somewhere or if its been slaughtered.”
In the case of Ms Reynell, a number of the horses given or sold to her were often on a free lease basis, and consumer protection advice in Australia recommends a contractual sale or obligation before re-homing a horse.
In giving handing over animal through a verbal contract, many owners forfeit the right to dictate what happens to their horse past the point of sale.
Koffels Solicitors & Barristers, a leading equestrian law firm in New South Wales, said in Australia there are often strict conditions imposed on sellers rather than purchasers and a contract can be imperative in order to ensure obligations are met by both parties.
People who TRULY LOVE their Horses, don’t attempt to find a FOREVER HOME. They retire them and pay up for them until they die!!!!!!!!!
RISK MANAGEMENT & THE LAW
An experienced horse rider had just warned her friend about some wire when her horse “bizarrely” walked on it, knocking her off and causing a fatal head injury.
Nicola Pellett, 47, never regained consciousness after the incident at North Canterbury’s Mandeville sports grounds, near her Swannanoa home on August 6, 2015. She was placed into an induced coma and died five days later, on August 11.
A coronial inquest into her death began at the Christchurch District Court before Coroner Sue Johnson on Thursday morning.
Pellett’s friend, Athena Fisher, said they were walking their horses to look at a new cross country area under construction when Pellett warned her about some wire near a fence post.
READ MORE: Nicky Pellett dies after fall from horse: Family in ‘utter shock’
“We literally were on the wire when Nicola saw it … She said Athena just watch out for the wire so I seen the wire and her horse Tiny had bizarrely got the wire caught up … in its shoe.”
Fisher said her horse started to get “quite antsy”, then she noticed the hinds of Pellett’s horse had gone down.
“It all happened so fast, I had a split second to jump off my horse. I knew it was going wrong … I came off my horse, grabbed hold of my horse and ran to tie it up.”
When she turned around Pellett was on the ground and facing the opposite way in the recovery position.
“I went running over for her horse not even thinking Nicky wasn’t getting up.
“It still sends shivers down my spine. I approached her, yelled her name several times, she was snoring so I knew it was pretty bad.
“I was sort of hoping that I had got it wrong. I took her hat off … I knew I had to run for help and I didn’t want to move her, I was worried about spinal injuries.”
Constable Rob Stokes said fencing contractor Paul Addie had partially erected a fence, with a post on either side and ground wire between them, the day before the incident. The wire was lying on the ground.
Stokes said police did not visit the scene until August 11. An investigation found no criminal liability for Pellett’s death.
WorkSafe New Zealand health and safety inspector Bridget Murray said she considered the duty of care by the Mandeville Sports Club, Addie and his business, the Eyreton Pony Club and the Waimakariri District Council.
She found under the then Health and Safety Act there were some breaches, but no enforcement was taken.
“[Addie] left when it was dark, there were no lights in the paddock, he didn’t understand that the paddock was used for horse riding so he’s left a guidewire up in a paddock believing he’s going to be there the next morning.”
Coroner Johnson apologised to Pellett’s family and friends in court that it had taken three years to reach the coronial stage.
“I acknowledge this inquiry might bring up emotions that you have hopefully perhaps been able to put aside sometimes and I acknowledge that you may feel that you’re hearing things that may distress you and I would like to offer my condolences to you for Nicola’s death.
The inquest has been adjourned to another date when other witnesses will give evidence.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
THE SCIENTISTS ARE AT IT AGAIN
Read a word of what they say and You will be confused forever. They really are speaking for their own entertainment, to impress themselves with their large words, getting more excited the larger they are. They make some outrageous comments, such as what appears in the terrible Photos below.
The second Photo – “As the Horse trotted effortlessly, and therefore at ease, they started taking initiatives to find the right cadence, balance and lightness, on their own”
Total subversion of the fact as shown in the Photos, as well as the principal of what they say in total. Horses do nothing of the such, which is why they get RUINED by incorrect Riding!!!!!!!!!!!
Don’t believe a word they say Folks. I must do a ‘Peer Review’ on this Frenchman. I mentioned Him once on my old Blog and he straight away threatened to sue me 🙂 He will lurve a ‘Peer Review’
As understanding deepened, the concept of frequency or cadence became a fundamental component of the picture, as within the muscle’ belly, filaments and cells have to be tuned to the stride frequency. “If titine is functioning as a locomotor spring, then it should be tuned to the frequency of muscle use.”
More recently, Stephen Levin and others describe how every part of an organism from molecular to the gross anatomy is integrated by a mechanical system into a complete functional unit. When under tension, fascia is a great part of the system stabilizing joints and assisting and augmenting muscle function. Tensegrity is the best explanation for how bodies stay intact and handle variable load. Storage and reuse of elastic energy is the essence of efficient gaits and athletic performances. Through their ability of converting the thrust generated by the hind legs into upward forces, back muscles have the capacity to regulate mechanical stress loading the limbs and other structure.
Compared to the primitive theories of submission and obedience to the rider’s aids, the real components of sound gaits and athletic performances appear impossible to control. They are indeed impossible to control, but they are easy to influence through partnership with the horse’s intelligence.
Education is teaching the brain to think. Educating a horse is teaching the horse’s brain to think. A simple example known as stretch-shorten contraction, might help understand how we can teach the horse’s brain to think in terms of efficiency. When a muscle contracts and is simultaneously elongated by an external force, the contraction is referred to as eccentric contraction. Eccentric contraction is also referred to as “active stretching”. This is when the greatest magnitude of force occurs. Eccentric contraction is often labeled as high-power contraction. During different sequences of the stride, many muscles work eccentrically, storing elastic strain energy. During the cycle of locomotion of a horse working at his natural frequency or cadence, eccentric contraction is often immediately followed by a concentric contraction. When the frequency is correct, the elastic strain energy stored in the muscle, during the eccentric contraction, reduces the work of the following concentric contraction.
At the Science of Motion, we refer to this springy, light and effortless trot as “the Pignot Jog” in memory of steeplechase trainer Rene Pignot. Intuitively, Pignot discovered in the late sixties that it was a cadence, lightness on the bit and balance where the horse trotted, bouncing their strides effortlessly. Pignot did not know biomechanically how the horse did it but he observed that he increased his horses’ muscle mass, power and elasticity practicing long sequences at this rhythmic trot. He prepared his steeplechase horses this way and, applying his findings, I prepared my three-day-event horse the same way. I also observed gain in calmness as the horses developed the muscle mass allowing them to deal with their nervous influx.
When the scientific explanation became available, the stretch-shorten contraction phenomenon, the calmness that I referred to as “intelligent calmness,” opened new perspectives. As the horses trotted effortlessly, and therefore at ease, they started taking initiatives to find the right cadence, balance and lightness on their own. They could not do it without the rider’s help but they were actively interested in the search. They engaged their brain exploring different adjustments leading to effortlessness. This observation leads me to wonder if they would use their intelligence in search of ease and effortlessness if the study of movement was no longer focusing on superficial appearance, but instead developing and coordinating their body for the athletic demand of the move.
The horses’ reactions were both astounding and sad. They were capable and interested in refining subtle coordination, far beyond the scope of natural reflexes. It was sad realizing that all these previous years, they have patiently supported my equitation of gestures, hands action, legs actions, shift of body weight, waiting for the emergence of my intelligence.
VIDEO OF THE DAY
NEWS OF THE DAY
KILLED WHILE AVOIDING LOOSE HORSE
(ABC 6 News) — The Minnesota State Patrol has released the name of the victim killed in a motorcycle crash with a horse. The crash happened at around 11:30 a.m. on Friday in Canton Township.
According to the crash report, 60-year-old Timothy Holt, of Decorah, Iowa, died when he tried to brake and swerve to avoid a horse on Highway 44 just east of the intersection with Highway 52.
Authorities said the horse, which had been grazing in the ditch and broke free from its chain, also died.
BEAR CAUSES HAVOC AND INJURIES
JACKSON HOLE, WYO – An early season horse wreck injured multiple riders this morning in Grand Teton National Park.
Teton Interagency Dispatch received notification about 8am on Friday, June 1, that several individuals were injured in a horse incident near the Colter Bay Corral operated by Grand Teton Lodge Company.
Park rangers and a park ambulance responded immediately, as well as Grand Teton Lodge Company employees. Additional park medics and park ambulances were requested and responded to the site. Four individuals were injured and transported via three park ambulances to St. John’s Medical Center in Jackson. Injuries were not life threatening.
An initial investigation indicates that Grand Teton Lodge Company employees were preparing for the opening of their horseback trail rides this weekend when several horses spooked. Three employees were on horseback and another employee was walking when it is believed they encountered a female black bear with two cubs of the year in the area.
Park rangers are conducting an accident investigation to determine how the incident happened. A temporary closure of the area has been implemented to allow the bears to naturally disperse from the area. It is unknown when horseback trail rides will begin in the Colter Bay
PRAYERS FOR SHOW JUMPER
The 25-year-old is in a stable condition after a serious car crash on Wednesday
THE show jumping community are praying for show jumper Jack Dodd after he was involved in a serious car accident on Wednesday morning.
The single car collision happened near Weert in Belgium. Dodd, who is based full time in Belgium, suffered head trauma and broken bones and was transferred to hospital where he is in an induced coma but a stable non-life threating condition.
Floods of prayers have been posted on social media for the 25-year-old, who is originally from Foxford in Co Mayo, where his parents David and Trish have a riding school. Dodd set up his own business in Balen, Belgium at the end of last summer.
BRUMBY DEBATE AS HEATED AS EVER
As Peter Cochran drives through Kosciuszko National Park in search of brumbies, he regularly points out the toll taken by humans.
“To suggest this is pristine wilderness is nonsense,” Cochran says, shaking his head.
A herd of brumbies runs through Kosciuszko National Park on Wednesday.
Photo: Karleen Minney
He gestures towards places including the former gold mine at Kiandra and various Snowy Hydro sites, and says it’s humans, not horses, causing the greatest damage to the high country.
“There are tracks, signs, powerlines, roads, tunnels…,” he says.
“I support the Snowy Scheme and I think it’s necessary, but people blame the brumbies [for environmental damage], and the impact of the horses doesn’t go anywhere near the human impact.”
Cochran, a former Nationals MP for Monaro who now uses the chance to see brumbies in the wild as a selling point for his horse trekking business, has spent nearly half a century defending the horses’ place in the national park.
He believes brumbies are Australian icons and a huge tourist draw – a view fiercely opposed by environmentalists and academics who say they’re introduced pests that are turning Kosciuszko into a “wild west theme park”.
Cochran found himself at the centre of the debate this week as Deputy Premier John Barilaro introduced a bill protecting brumbies from lethal culling into the NSW Parliament, in a stunning backflip on the government’s 2016 proposal to wipe out thousands of the wild horses.
NSW Labor has promised to vote against the bill, which is now before parliament, and to repeal it if elected next year.
Labor is also questioning the influence of Cochran, who is a donor to the National Party. Labor has called for the legislation to be withdrawn from parliament and an investigation to be carried out into the former MP’s sway with his friend and the man who holds his old seat, John Barila
Barilaro says he will “absolutely not” take the legislation off the table, and denies that he has done anything wrong, or that Cochran holds undue influence over him.
Cochran also says the situation perfectly illustrates the problem with the long-running brumby issue.
“Some people say I’m doing this purely for commercial reasons, but I’ve been campaigning on these issues since 1972.
“This whole debate has been driven by politics, not practical experience or science.”
He prefers to focus on what he calls the “barefaced lies” about brumbies.
“You can’t even see where the horses have been,” Cochran says.
“It’s a constant barrage of bullshit from the academics and the environmentalists.”
During the horse riding season between October and April, Cochran spends most of his time in the mountains and regularly comes across brumbies.
He believes the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service estimate of 6000 horses in the national park is “rubbish”, saying the real number is probably closer to 4000.
He also says criticism of brumbies as introduced pests is cheap.
“They’ve adopted all the characteristics of an animal living in its native state, which, for a horse, is quite unique,” he says.
“The brumby is part of our cultural heritage. There are books and sporting teams named after them.
“The image of The Man From Snowy River that featured at the opening of the Sydney Olympics has attracted people from all over the world to [Kosciuszko National Park].”
But academics and environmentalists have long argued sentimental cultural attachments should not be prioritised over the environment of the park, which they say has been badly damaged and has left native species under threat.
Among the horses’ chief critics is Australian National University associate professor Dr Graham Worboys, who called the legislation protecting brumbies the biggest conservation threat in 75 years.
“It would lead to the destruction of Kosciuzsko National Park as we know it today,”he says.
Another academic, Ecological Society of Australia president Professor Don Driscoll, says the NSW government’s plans are “dangerously reckless”.
Driscoll says the new legislation will further damage waterways, threaten native species, escalate costs and consign the feral horses to an even crueller fate than culling.
“The brumby bill will inevitably lead to unprecedented horse densities relative to the food available,” Driscoll wrote for The Conversation.
“There would be a real risk of mass horse starvation.
“By ignoring these basic ecological processes, the bill is likely to preside over more horse suffering than would be caused by a cull.”
The National Parks Association has also savaged the proposed legislation.
Alix Goodwin, the chief executive of the association’s NSW branch, has gone as far as labelling it an international embarrassment.
“The Berejiklian government’s foolish policy to protect thousands of hard-hooved animals will wreck the high country, drive many Australian species to the brink, and pollute the clean mountains streams that are critical for downstream users,” she says.
Esther Gallant, who heads the association’s ACT branch, says the legislation has her in disbelief.
“We are absolutely sickened by the whole prospect of turning one of the premier national parks in Australia into essentially a wild west theme park,” Gallant says.
“[Brumbies] have trodden down the stream banks, damaged the sphagnum bogs and they’re eating out the plant life.
“The damage is extensive and it’s very saddening for all of us who have walked there and enjoyed it.”
Jindabyne local Leisa Caldwell has worked with and around the wild horses for decades and heard those concerns, but takes a different view.
The horsewoman shares Cochran’s passion for brumbies, and sees them as one of the last remaining links to the area’s history.
The Snowy Mountains landscape was largely revamped after World War II with the start of the Snowy Mountains Scheme, with towns including Jindabyne relocated after the originals were flooded.
Then, in the 1970s, 135 years of cattle grazing in the area came to an end as what was once a state park was declared a national park.
“The brumbies are pretty sacred now,” Caldwell said.
“They’re just about the only thing we’ve got left now to demonstrate that our history even existed.
“Sure, they can make a bit of a mess, but it’s short-lived, and history shows that Mother Nature can look after herself.”
But, as Caldwell puts it, the issue is “very complex and very emotional”, splitting opinions in a debate that remains as bitter as ever.
AT LEAST 24 HORSES KILLED
MOUNT HOPE – A fire at an equestrian facility Saturday morning in Orange County killed at least two dozen horses.
Police say at least 24 horses were trapped inside a barn that had caught fire at Mount Hope Training Center in Otisville.
The center – a 63-acre facility off Guymard Turnpike, houses seven different barns, according to it’s website.
Saturday’s fire, destroyed one of those barns – the same where embattled trainer Dean Eckley reportedly kept horses. Eckley was arrested years ago for animal cruelty. His license also once suspended after his horses tested positive for drugs.
The Orange County Sherriff’s Office told News 12 that no one appeared to be in the barn when the blaze erupted around 3 a.m. Police are considering lightening as a possible cause.
Harness Racing Museum Director Janet Terhune says the death of any horse, let alone several dozen, is a calamity few can comprehend.
“Every time there’s news of a barn fire, there’s a sickening feeling in the pit of your stomach that horses suffered and died,” said Terhune. “It really it a heart wrenching and sickening feeling.”
State police, the state Fire Investigation Team and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office are investigating the incident.
FEED PRICES THROUGH THE ROOF
The drought is hitting the high end of stock feed users in Australia.
Some thoroughbred horse studs have been considering, and one already implementing, a “drought levy” on horse owners.
One stud manager warned there would be a critical feed situation if there was no decent rain before August, to help get fodder production back on track.
All studs spokespeople emphasised to Fairfax Media that they knew they were better off than most farmers and deeply understood their plight to feed drought-affected stock.
However, they said they had to make some tough decisions themselves.
Horse trainers have also told Fairfax Media they are finding it difficult to source good quality hay for horses.
The prices at Mudgee in NSW have hit $17 for a small lucerne bale.
They are also considering upping feed levies on owners.
Even the wealthy Darley operation was forced to disperse most of an elite Charolais herd at Kelvinside in the Hunter Valley due to the continuing dry.
Most have good access to groundwater and irrigation, but the feed side of operations will become critical by the end of the year.
Yarraman Stud has brought in a small drought levy already because of the high cost of feed, while Arrowfield, an industry leader in thoroughbred breeding, is in the throes of also considering a feed levy for horse owners.
Many studs luckily bought large stocks of hay earlier in the year, including Darley at Kelvinside, who bought 4000 bales out of southern Queensland – almost the last available.
Producers cannot source hay out of Queensland, and very little is available out of NSW.
Almost all hay is now being brought in from Victoria and South Australia. In South Australia lucerne hay supplies are running short.
Arrowfield farm manager Matt Hill said his stud was only in a good situation because it had bought a large load of hay earlier in the year.
“We are very mindful that we are in a luckier situation than many farmers who face very tough times,” he said.
“If there isn’t any rain before August we start to get into a troubling time, and it could be a dire situation for feed.”
He said like any businesses, Arrowfield may have to cover increased costs of feed from owners at some stage.
“We are very mindful that we are in a luckier situation than many farmers who face very tough times.”
Arrowfield farm manager Matt Hill
Yarraman farm manager Scott Norton said they had already brought in a small drought levy for horse owners to cover feed costs.
“We were lucky to buy some large amounts of hay earlier in the year and we think that will get us through to Christmas,” he said.
“There is still some good quality lucerne hay in South Australia, but that is getting low.
“You can’t buy small bales of lucerne hay in the Hunter.”
Mr Norton said most trainers and studs had dedicated suppliers so they would get through.
Owners were asked for a small drought levy to cover the increased costs of the dry. The worry was how much fodder could actually be produced next spring if there was no decent rain.
Darley’s Kelvinside stud manager Barley Ward-Thomas said his stud was well-placed to survive the dry, but they had been forced to move horses to better parts of the stud and also destock the stud’s prime herd of Charloais cattle, that had been at the stud for a long time and were a prized part of the operation.
Kelvinside would probably have used all of its river water allocation by the end of the year at considerable cost.
“We are in a fortunate position but we know many aren’t,” he said.
“The stud bought 4000 bales out of Queensland three months ago. “It is a desperate situation for many as you would know.”
Mudgee trainer Cameron Crockett said his feed bill was going up exponentially, with both racehorses of his own stable and other stables spelling on the Crockett property, meaning he had to keep feed up to 70 horses with almost no pick in the paddock.
“Horses need to chew all day long, so we need to feed them morning, midday and night to keep the feed up,” he said.
“It’s hardly ever been drier and but feed has never been harder to get.
“We had 15mm the other day but I don’t expect any growth out of that.”
Mr Crockett said he would soon have to consider passing on the costs of feed at some stage to owners, with hay bales hitting $17 a bale for him at the moment.
The price is expected to go much higher in coming months.
“You have to give horses something to chew on,” Mr Crockett said.
Markets on many of the Jewels were suspended last night after leading trainers Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen advised the Racing Integrity Unit of their concerns over possible contamination for nine of their starters on Saturday.
The Racing Integrity Unit will now take samples from all nine horses involved in an attempt to clear them of any accidental exposure to prohibited substances before tomorrow.
Nobody involved would confirm the exact nature of the contamination concerns, but the Herald understands the testing is precautionary.
The TAB suspended the markets for most of the Jewels races as soon as they were informed and they could stay closed until tonight but it seems unlikely the tests will result in any scratchings or dramatic changes to the meeting.
HORSE AND CART OVER THE FENCE AND OUT
DEVON, Pa. (WPVI) —
Video from the Devon Horse Show depicts a wild scene, as one of the horses breaks loose, hurdles the fence in the stands and makes a run for it.
The stunned crowd was screaming as the horse ran back toward the stable area.
The horse was later safely caught in the stable area, shipped home and was checked by a veterinarian.
Horse show officials say the horse suffered minor scrapes.
Officials also say the rider immediately dismounted from the carriage and was not injured.
EQUESTRIAN COACH AND PEDOFILE
LA CAÑADA FLINTRIDGE, Calif. — There’s no trace of Jimmy A. Williams, the Show Jumping Hall of Fame trainer, at the equestrian club where he was an instructor for nearly four decades, cultivating young riders, some of whom went on to Olympic fame.
The pictures and paintings of Mr. Williams, who died in 1993, and the sterling trophies he won all vanished without a word recently from the clubhouse where he had spent many afternoons tipping back Champagne with some of Los Angeles County’s biggest and richest names: the parents of his young charges. Last month, the club removed his name from the grand show jumping stadium at the heart of the sprawling property at the foot of the San Gabriel Mountains, once the Jimmy A. Williams Oval. Today it is just Ring 1.
But his former riders cannot forget Mr. Williams. Across the country, in her New Jersey barn adorned with her Olympic medals, Anne Kursinski, one of the country’s most decorated show jumpers, remembered her former coach.
How he tasted of alcohol whenever he pinned her in a horse stall and crammed his tongue into her mouth. And far more. “He penetrated me when I was 11,” Ms. Kursinski said, revealing publicly for the first time the details of what she said became six years of continual rape and molestation. “I was a little kid,” she said. “And he was God.”
The equestrian community has been rocked by the revelations of abuse made by Ms. Kursinski and four other students, the broad strokes of which were first reported last month by The Chronicle of the Horse, an industry publication. It has shaken an insular universe in which Mr. Williams, in life and after, was a mythic figure, revered for his knack with difficult horses and for churning out top-flight riders.
But few have been surprised.
Interviews with 38 former students, trainers, grooms, equestrian officials and members of the Flintridge Riding Club reveal a rarefied social scene in which Mr. Williams groped and kissed young girls publicly and with impunity — though few knew the true extent of the abuse.
They describe a toxic brew of prestige and ambition that led parents, bent on their child’s success in the show ring, to ignore his near daily predations — and persuaded children who were afraid of losing beloved horses to stay silent. What emerged was a world where, for adults, entree to cocktail hour in the Spanish Colonial-style clubhouse and access to a man with movie-star good looks and a legendary way with horses seemed to eclipse whatever it was rumored to have happened back at the barn.
“The unspoken rule was of not saying anything, not divulging anything,” said Karen Herald, 58, who rode there from age 16 to 20, during which time she said Mr. Williams continually molested her. Mr. Williams wielded carrot and stick to ensure silence, she and others said: better horses to ride for those who were compliant, and threats they’d fail in the sport without him as coach.
“For the riders, it was, ‘Oh my God, I want to be the best rider,’ ” said Ms. Herald, who now works in breast cancer research. But for the parents, she said, “It was, ‘Oh my God, I want to be a part of this.’ ”
LETTERS OF THE DAY
QUESTION – AGED HORSE
Would it be ok to start doing low level Eventing on an 18 Year Old Horse and Trail Riding.
Normally we would never recommend one commences with a Horse this Age, however, having looked at the photos and Videos, we can’t see any reason why you couldn’t.
The key however, will be to put in the ‘hard yards’ and to prepare the Horse properly, for 6 weeks and that means a minimum of 5 days a Week, on the lunge, as Per the Running Reins E-Book.
The Horse has been a nice type in Her Day and quite a nice mover.
Due to Her overall well being (apart from Muscle tone and some condition) she should respond well. Make sure you take before and after pictures for us/??
Remember, the ‘Holy Grail’ of Dressage and indeed, the VETERINARY protection and promotion of the Horse, is found in that article I recently wrote for the Premium Portal. Go have a read of it but the key is “Inside Leg to Outside Rein” as well as not allowing any of the other nasties, like flexed off etc. If in doubt, or if she nis rusty, train her the Leg Yield, during her time on the lunging programme.
The E-Book will tell You that the Horse must be carrying the weight on the inside hind Leg always, so no flexed off there either.
She should respond well. We would not flatwork her at all, until prepped. ( Riding at the walk for Leg Yield is no worries or trail riding indeed.)
Any questions, get back to us.
AGED HORSE 2 FOR THE WEEK
Re running reins system purchase for our rising 17 yo mare, out of work for four years. Only wanting to do nh and pleasure riding. You asked for photos and videos, hope we have not overdone it. She was hard to stand square but we did our best.
Sorry for the delay in sending these, she did something to herself in the paddock a week ago and was lame. Vet out, shoulder soft tissue only, he checked her sacrum for evenness too, said it was fine.
My daughter Meredith and I thank you in advance for any advice.
Thanks for the Pics
The Horse is lovely, above average in stature and was no doubt a lovely type when Young.
She is in very good stead for Her age, better than most and will easily respond to your exercise work and respond well.
Certainly no problems riding Her in your intended fashion.
The work will do Her good, rather than ill
She came home off agistment looking a bit thin, and dull in the coat three weeks ago. She has bloomed since coming home.
We will start slowly and build her back up as she has not carried a rider for four years. Had a nice foal and then has been a pasture potato as my daughter has been away, busy with uni, boyfriend etc.
I’ve decided it is time for me to get back into riding, good for her and me. Next step, al ground work and round yard work going well, I will be ordering one of your beautiful saddles!