Recently I’ve had a change of heart in a certain discipline. I loved reining but after researching the horses body and how it is perfect for being exactly how it was intended as a grazing animal. They are meant to graze all day and constantly moving never staying in one spot. They function like a well oiled machine as a herd and a unit. Everyone has their job. It has kept them alive for thousands of years. That being said, I used to love reining I still teach my horses the basics of dressage and reining but I’ve drifted away from the sport due to the strain it puts on the horses body. Horses are not meant to spin hard consistently on their hocks, stopping hard to slide is very straining on hocks and knees. To each their own if that’s your cup of tea it’s beautiful to watch but I just don’t agree with the pressure it puts on the horse. I’ve been an avid 3 day Eventer as a teenager when I lived in AZ, I’ll forever love jumping and dressage but I didn’t prefer the people. I love English and western pleasure and that’s where my heart resides for the fact that it’s not strenuous on the horse if done correctly. Slow, natural collection and communication between horse and rider subtle and soft there’s no better picture in my opinion. I don’t agree with the mechanical lope some circuit horses do but no sport is perfect. Anymore as I get older now in my 30s I appreciate a nice, relaxing trail ride on a good horse with friends enjoying time away from our busy lives. It’s funny how we change as we get older. My horses used to constantly have their tails washed and bagged, whiskers and bridle paths shaved, socks shaved, white socks as bright as they could be but now, happy, pasture potatoes is what I prefer. My horses now have “cactus faces” sporting their long whiskers so they can use them as they were intended. They are bathed once a month (maybe) and tails most times have black berry bushes stuck in them. Natural and happy. That’s my approach to horse care anymore. What makes me happy? Riding on a horse who would go to the ends of the earth for me if I asked, soft in my hands, light to my cues and still has their personality to tell me their opinions as we ride. It’s a partnership not a dictatorship. To be better today than we were yesterday is all I ask. No more expecting perfection and hours in the arena schooling. Short schooling rides that achieve small goals are what we do anymore. Life’s too short. Enjoy the horse and think of your partnership as a relationship not an ownership. You’ll find the beauty I’ve found and love.
Published by Jillian
I specialize in problem horses, youngsters, horse rehabilitation and achieving softness and a better relationship between horse and their rider. I not only train horses but humans as well. Not your typical riding lesson but I can, if you so choose, teach you to train your horse! I’m always available to help answer questions or share photos or videos upon request to better illustrate my advice. I’ve mastered the “don’t break the bank” way of keeping your horse healthy and cared for while on a budget. If you walk into almost any large barn in Oregon you’re bound to meet a horse I trained or sold! I’ve trained over 623 horses and counting! I post updates as I receive them from clients and buyers. Thank you for taking the time to browse and hopefully learn something new! View more posts