I'm often asked my opinion on martingales, tie-downs and mouth shutters. All three are counter measures to overcome a horse's resistance to a command.
I will start with martingales, they are used for control and establishing a headset on a young horse. The biggest problem I have found is the angle of the pull on a martingale is so different from the angle of the pull on my reins without a martingale. The angle is different from the bit to the reins as well as from the reins to your hands. After the use of a martingale I have had to reteach my horse because of the change of the angle. The angle of your pull is very important when you teach a command, the horse will learn what they are supposed to do when that angle of pressure is applied. Therefor we want to use the same angle every time we ask for that command. Instead of using a martingale, I teach them to establish a head set by building pressure with my hands and focusing on releasing when my horses head is down, rather then pulling it down.
My next subject is tie-downs which are intended as a barrier to stop a horse from lifting their head too high. A high head indicates resistance from the commands, meaning your horse doesn’t fully accept the command. In my opinion it should only be used as a barrier and your horse should respect it by staying away from it. If your horse is constantly resisting them, tie-downs can cause soundness issues. Think about what it does to the spine when horses are running, turning and stopping while pushing on the tie-down. They can also be dangerous if adjusted too tight, causing the horse to rear over. If adjusted properly tie-downs are useful in speed events where fast corrections are made.
Now we will move on to mouth shutters, cavesson and nose bands. These are used to stop a horse from opening their mouth to resist a command. These cause more wear and tear on their TMJ's from the horse constantly trying to open their mouth against pressure. It's been proven that this will eventually wear out the cartilage and cause nerve damage. I found slowing down the pressure and pinpointing the release of your command solves the problem. If a horse knows what body part and movement I'm asking for, he won't open his mouth. I use the open mouth as a gauge. If they open their mouth then I'm pulling too fast.
Since I have been asked my opinion on these training tools countless times I thought maybe you guys might want to hear my input! This is just one mans opinion on these particular tools and everyone has one. Please leave your input below we would love to hear it.
That's my two cents
Enjoy the journey!
Im not sure there is many of you that even want to hear how amazing Arizona is, but Im going to let you have it anyways. We are staying here at the South Buckeye Equestrian Centre where there is pretty much everything you need on site. Equipped with two indoor arenas, five outdoor arenas, two covered round pens, two outdoor round pens and more stalls then you can shake a stick at. We don’t long for much. They host weekly roping practices and jackpots along with barrel races. The pub on site has a jukebox, pool table, roping dummys and a live band on the weekends. Needless to say I am currently in heaven on earth and having the time of my life. This weekend they had the Pro Rodeo here which was lots of fun, I watched steer tripping live for the first time. We also went to Mesa to a massive swap meet with around 200 vendors, this was probably a bad environment for me because I have a mild shopping problem... In addition to all of the playing we have been doing, dad is hosting his month long Apprentice camp. In the camp this month we have a great group pf people Regina, Ethan and Ramona. The camp goes on from Monday to Friday from 9:00am to 5:00pm depending on when they finish working the horses. We have a pretty nice pen of training horses for the students to learn this year. We have some rope horses with box problems, blown up barrel horses, a mean miniature pony and un-touched yearlings. Its amazing to watch the same steps fix such a wide variety of problems. We only have a few weeks left here which literally makes me want to cry. First chance to move I am jumping all over it. I highly suggest everyone come down here during the winter if you want to escape the snow. Im planning on winning the lottery and never seeing a snowflake again. I hope everyones winter is going as good as mine! I will keep you guys posted if I happen to move to a different country.
Who doesn’t love a good road trip? However as soon as you add horses into the mix things can become a little more stressful. Whether its a 30 minute drive or a 30 hour drive there is so many more things to have on hand and to think about. In my case anyways, those creatures in the trailer are my entire life and I am constantly thinking of ways to better their training or health. I am a sucker for a slick, shiney and happy horse.
I am lucky enough have some incredible professionals in my life to learn from and ask questions. Kathy Knies with Blackwing Equine Therapy and Shelly Nyuli with Sciencepure Nutraceuticals are not only my guidance councillors but have become our family. We also rely heavily on Back on Track products not only for our horses but for us. I can personally say without their knee brace I could not accomplish what I do in a day. I have instant relief with their products.
Besides my two therapists on speed dial, I am going to start with some of my favourite items to have in the trailer in addition to your standard vet kit.
Feed products and health for your horse is a topic I could go on and on about. Having a healthy horse plays a big part in hauling, just completing a 30 hour drive I can say it definitely look a lot out of them. I keep my horses on a custom feed program designed for each horse by Kathy Knies and Shelly Nyuli. I will list their numbers on the bottom and highly suggest giving them a call to set up a feed program for your horse. I truly feel every horse is different and what they need changes a few times a year. Its amazing the difference you will see in your horse when they are happy and healthy, something both of those amazing women can help you achieve.
Routine is another thing I want to talk about. We don’t generally take our horses out of the trailer until we arrive at our destination which is at most 10 hours. We like to water them in the trailer and they have feed in there of course. We have found it causes more stress unloading them in a strange place for a few minutes and then loading them back in the trailer. Unless you have an hour or so to take them out and let them settle down, we find it more effective to just keep them in there. I have been known to go a little overboard on the routine side of things... I mean I can't honestly say applying a travel blend of oils to their poll or using shipping boots is necessary but I sure love to do it! If I'm just going a short distance I like to put on a Back on Track blanket and boots so their muscles are warm and ready to go when I arrive.
Now a days there is a million products and different ways to do everything, I am by no means pushing anything on anyone or saying the way I do things is the best way. Different strokes for different folks. I am just sharing what has worked for us. Feel free to comment and let us know any tips you guys have, you can always learn something from everyone.
Kathy Knies-Blackwing Equine Therapy Shelly Nyuli- Sciencepure Nutraceuticals
Well for those of you who don’t know me, be prepared for a little bit of sarcasm coming your way.
I am a 23-year-old girl who is living her dream, thanks to her amazing parents who have created a horse training method that has paved the road of my life. I am one of four incredibly talented horse training children. My brothers Kyle, Kade and sister Kaylee are all involved with horses and teaching, as well as two my amazing sister in-laws Justine and Danielle. I also have an incredible brother in-law Jim who is handy with a horse and even more talented with a car.
I currently own 8 horses, I know it’s a problem, all of them I have used the Training Thru Trust method to fix their issues. My goal with them is to turn them into kids’ lesson and rodeo horses, making them safe for every level of rider. My passion has always been in rodeo, it wasn’t until this past year I learned how much more fun it is with kids involved! Well… other people’s kids anyways. I work in the office for Training Thru Trust as well as teaching lessons, training horses and riding my own.
My intentions with this blog is too inform you guys of upcoming events, news in our industry and any tips and tricks of the trade that we may have.
Doug, Lynette and I have just arrived in Buckeye, Arizona. It was a long drive with many ups and downs! Here in Arizona mom and dad will be hosting their Apprentice Camp, Training Horses and doing some roping of course. I personally plan on running barrels, training, and updating you guys of anything exciting that happens in between.
We have spent the last few days unloading and getting settled in. Today will be the first day of 2017 that I ride without insulated coveralls, I’m sure it will be the best one so far. Hopefully reading this blog can bring a little sunshine into your day as well. Feel free to leave comments we love to hear from you!