Of Kids and Horses

I've noticed that many of my philosophies on training colts mirror what I've learned about raising kids.  Here's a few of those parallel ideas:

  • If you're always hanging tight onto the reins, they will never know how to guide themselves.

  • Hold steady and wait for the response you desire.
  • When you see what you're looking for in behavior, be quick to reward.
  • If you over use your aids, they will become numb to your cues.
  • When bad behavior comes up unexpectedly, rule out illness or pain first.

  • Change the environment; change the mind.
  • Sometimes, they really just need a lot of wet saddle blankets.
  • Don't take it personal.
  • A gentle touch will go much farther to produce the desired response than a jerk of the reins or a jab of the spur.
  • If you are anxious, they will be scared. If you are over riding, they will be bracey. If you are soft, they will melt into your hands.
  • Do the groundwork and you'll enjoy the fun stuff later.
  • Common sense will get you far.
  • Ride with people who are better than you.
  • Sometimes, you gotta just let them be horses.
  • Be a student of learning.
  • Be a trainer first so you can be a friend later.
  • Although you are the trainer, your colts will likely give you the education.
  • One you've lost your temper, you've lost the opportunity for teaching to occur.
  • It takes a lot of years to make a good one.
  • Just when you get them where you want them, they're gone.


Momza said...

I loved this!
I grew up with horses, and this rings so true! Never thought to compare kids to horses, but now thanks to you, I see the comparisons and they are awesome!!!

Well said!!

Saimi said...

Amazing and so true, every word! I am indeed a horse woman and you analogy is perfect!

I'm going to share this with my husband I think he'll get a 'kick' out of it! :)

Silcox Stories said...

This is really insightful. I don't think I can relate kids to dance; hmm I'll think about it. Hope all is well, can't wait until you are here!

Hatch Family said...

hey traci! i didn't realize i'm raising two colts in my home. i would love to send them to board at your house for awhile for some training....

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What started as a way to communicate with far away friends and family has become a place for this horse trainer/HR manager turned stay at home mom of 3 girls to hold on to a bit of her own identity. It's my take on the ins and outs, the ups and downs, the thoughts and feelings, the mistakes and triumphs of this family as we bumble our way to eternity.