Patrick is continuously adding to this list of articles. Ranging from dressage to natural horsemanship, mechanics and anatomy, theory and self reflection, the list of topics is always growing. These articles are based on Patrick’s years of experience and study, helped along by the tens of thousands of horses that he has ridden, and the hundreds of horses he meets and works with each year throughout his clinics.
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Check back often for updates.
Be sure to also check out the TALKING ABOUT HORSES podcast for interviews and insights.
with Patrick King The following are the “6 Rules of Horsemanship” I teach my students. Incorporating these six deceptively simple rules in your everyday horsemanship will prove to maximize the time you spend with your horse, increase your rate of progression, and eliminate much of the frustration you may experience in training your horse. RULE … Continue reading 6 Rules of Horsemanship
THE TRAINING PYRAMID: ONE PIECE AT A TIME with Patrick King RHYTHM & RELAXATION Many riders struggle with physical and emotional relaxation in the horse because they jump too quickly “up the scale” into contact/connection before the horse has learned to manage his own emotions. Until a horse can prove that he is relaxed in … Continue reading Rhythm & Relaxation
with Patrick King When we think of Dressage, we tend to think of riders in white breeches and top hats mounted atop leggy warmbloods performing high level maneuvers like canter pirouettes, tempe changes, piaffe, and passage. Oh yeah…. and they’re riding in long-flapped black saddles that keep them held snug into the perfect position and … Continue reading Dressage in a Western Saddle
A topic that comes up frequently at clinics and during lessons is the rider’s aids. How to ask for this movement or where to put the hands for this maneuver… it seems many riders get very stuck on how much to use which aid, where and when. Without getting into specifics about each particular thing … Continue reading The Ideal Ratio of Aids
with Patrick King Regardless of discipline, preferred breed, or level of training, some riders consistently improve themselves and their horses while others languish. The degree of success can be measured by the habits the riders form; great horsemanship comes down to a series of great habits. Amongst the riders that aren’t making improvements or are … Continue reading 10 Important Habits for Every Rider
with Patrick King When it comes to riding and handling horses, safety comes third. Yes, you read that right. Safety third. Surely some of you are shaking your heads at me for such a suggestion, but don’t misunderstand my intentions, please. Safety is a pretty big priority – sorta like breathing and eating. The truth … Continue reading Safety Third
with Patrick King Horsemanship is a Journey… and it’s a journey unlike any other. It’s all about personal discovery, increased awareness, and self discipline. When I say personal discovery, I’m talking about knowing what our limitations really are, instead of what we think they are. Fear – or compliance – or laziness – or social acceptance – or whatever else – … Continue reading Horsemanship is a Journey
with Patrick King More Leg, More Leg, More Leg…. It’s a trap! When seeking refinement and precision in our horsemanship, we desire a horse that is light and responsive to the leg aids. It takes seemingly no effort to guide them, control their energy, or position their body. However, we often see riders kicking and … Continue reading It’s a Trap!
There’s a new discipline that’s taking the equestrian world by storm and changing the face and future of western horsemanship. Have you heard of it? Are you competing in it? Maybe you’re riding your horse with these principles in mind during your everyday training but don’t even know it. Heck, maybe you’ve been doing it … Continue reading The Future of Western Horsemanship
THE TRAINING PYRAMID: ONE PIECE AT A TIME SUPPLENESS Suppleness refers to the horse’s ability to bend without tension or stiffness. Tension in any place in the horse’s body causes a disruption in the natural flow of energy or movement throughout the rest of the body. It is important to understand that often, tension and … Continue reading Suppleness
From what I see in barns and arenas all around the world, the rein-back seems to be the most underutilized and improperly ridden gaits/movements that the horse has to offer. When developed “properly,” (meaning, with understanding from the horse and biomechanically true) both on the ground and under saddle, the rein-back: improves our connection, improves the … Continue reading The Rein-Back