10 BASIC PRINCIPLES OF GOOD HORSEMANSHIP

There is no magic recipe to being a good horse trainer. Most people can learn to be brilliant horse trainers with a knowledge of learning theory and by following a few simple principles which ensure a good horse/handler relationship and good communication.

10.Always Put the Horse First

Photo by Laila Klinsmann from Pexels
Photo by Laila Klinsmann from Pexels

With the right handling, a horse can be more than a tool for riding or competition; he can also be a true companion and a partner in any activity. The horse is an intelligent creature, capable of physical feeling and experiencing at least basic emotions, and should be treated as such during training. The horse’s welfare should be the primary concern of any trainer. It should also be the endeavour of the trainer to make training enjoyable for the horse. The horse

should co-operate with the trainer out of choice, not force. Never sacrifice the trust of the horse or his welfare to gain a quick result or the approval of peers or experts. Partnership between horse and handler should be based on training which is productive, consistent and pleasurable for all involved.

These principles should be maintained regardless of what technique within learning theory you employ to train your horse. The rest of this book is dedicated to explaining how horses learn and how to apply this knowledge to ensure your training is most productive and enjoyable.

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