Progressing in Your Horsemanship

Progressing in your Horsemanship
Progressing in your Horsemanship

Something I’ve noticed in the Parelli program are students that don’t progress. People often come to the program because they have a difficult horse. They start at one point in the process, get some tools, have some breakthroughs and then don’t ask for more – of themselves or their horse. The horse may have come into the program an extreme Right Brained Extrovert but as it gains confidence, it will start to become more centered. But the human still thinks of them as an RBE and treats them as such. Keeping both themselves and their horse in that tiny little spot on the horsenality chart.

I see people stuck in level 2, not progressing because they are afraid to scare their horse.

The name of the game is progress. Progress comes in the simplest of forms.

It can be a simple friendly game in which you up the anti. Progress further. Just how friendly can you get your horse with an umbrella?

Be imaginative! Throw things on the ground. Stumble around like a drunk person. Note how your horse handles this and then PROGRESS. Help your horse get brave. Help him move past his fears to that space where he feels safe -where he can see you as an effective leader. Use your imagination and the imaginations of your friends!

In one Savvy Club DVD (Issue 74: Calm, Connected and Responsive – Extroverts – Online) I heard Linda Parelli say that many many people have not won the friendly game. They can play it with their stick and string and maybe they can touch the horse all over. Maybe. But they don’t progress the friendly game beyond that. Then they wonder why their horse is always so nervous.

Pay attention to how your horse feels about the situations you are putting him in and then balance your friendly game! The friendly game can always be expanded on. There is always one more thing you can try, test your horses confidence and then help him gain even more.

Progress is the name of the game. Don’t get stuck in the mud! And don’t blame the Parelli program (or your instructor or you HORSE!) when you don’t progress. It’s completely up to you.


    1. absolutely! i love it when i have a chance to test my friendly game. it also give me a chance to see where there may be some holes in my horsemanship and then FIX them πŸ™‚ it is most definitely a journey of never ending self improvement! thanks for posting emily! good luck with your friendly game πŸ˜‰

  1. My friend is like this. She says she does natural horse man ship, however she only seems to skim the surface of it! When asking for yield of the back legs she accepts as little as one step and has not asked for more than that in the whole six months she has had this horse. She believes this is all there is to yielding, however i believe you have only taught your horse to yield when he does a full 360 after one small suggestion. Same with backing up, she accepts a couple of steps when she should be moving on to five or ten steps.

    1. when we are trying to support our friends on their journey one of the most important things to remember is to not make them feel like we are judging them or to make them feel wrong. when the time is right she will see that what she is doing is not helping. the best thing you can do is be an example for her to see. her horse can only do a few steps of disengagement, but yours can go all the way around. by watching you she may decide on her own that her horse is capable of more. be the change you want to see in the world πŸ™‚ thank you for commenting!!

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