A common question I get is “how do you teach your horses to drop their head on their own? How do you release pressure without having control over the horse?”
The answer is simply this, I do have full control of the horse’s even though you see no ropes or contact they get their release the way I’ve taught them from the beginning. Having them move like this takes many stages not just one technique other than consistency and method change when they are ready to progress.
There are many steps the horse’s learn before being under saddle. This foundation also sets them up to move correctly under saddle. Their bodies are well conditioned and prepared before their first saddling and first ride.
The benefits of the “low and slow” at liberty like this teaches them control without restraints, respect and I use body language with them so they feel comfortable communicating in their “own language” per say. This adds comfort and understanding-which is the foundation of bonding and partnership. The low head set lifts their back and strengthens their back or “top-line” this helps them build proper muscling to carry a rider. The slow is good to teach for them to realize they have a few speeds instead of just go and stop. Controlling the horse speeds, having them transition into other speeds as you cue it. This helps when they are under saddle with a rider so there’s no confusion of what the rider is asking. Most of my youngsters jog naturally right away under saddle I rarely have to school them to have a nice slow trot just because we work on it from the ground first.
Ground work, patience and praise! A well prepared horse is a willing partner!