This mini course is broken down into a few “primary” steps. While these can be many layers deep in their own right, these steps are the “basics” of all of our in-hand work, from the most fundamental work up through the advanced airs above the ground.
We will start with “opening the door” to the horse’s topline and nervous system. Accessing the poll and topline will help us to find places of tension in our horse’s body (physical and emotional), allowing us to release this tension and build both rapport and relaxation.
From here, we’ll work on developing mindful movement from our horses. This is going to be a big key to their body awareness and to the engagement of their balancing muscles.
Once we have mindfulness of movement and a better understanding of a few basic aids, it’s time to encourage suppleness and engagement within movement. BUT this is also a place where we have a tremendous focus on the horse’s BALANCE (again, both physically and mentally). If you only ever get as far as this step, I promise that you will have made some significant changes in your horse’s body and mind.
Moving beyond the basic suppleness and engagement, we come to the next stage in our “elementary” in-hand work, where we focus on more coiling of the haunches and accessing the thoracic sling… which basically helps us to move into more collection later on.
These steps, altogether, will have given us a more relaxed, responsive, aware, supple, and engaged partner in our horse. And they will have helped us to become the fantastic point of reference for balance and position that our horse’s are seeking in a leader/partner.
Find out more information on this course here: https://www.academyforclassicalhorsemanship.com/inhand-mini-course