Amateur: one who has a taste for (something)
from French amateur "lover of"

How to Retrain the Hard to Catch Horse

29 August, 2014

The most important thing to keep in mind when working with a horse that's hard to catch is he has a reason for wanting to avoid being caught. It doesn't matter what his reason is. What matters is to work consistently and systematically to change his mind. This is a training problem, not a horse deliberately being 'bad.'

This catching exercise should always be done with no time constraints. It's important not to think of success or failure in terms of how long this takes. It might take almost no time one day and two hours another. When applied with time, patience, and consistency, this method will always work. Over time, it will produce a horse that's easy to catch, and will often come to you.

In the photos below, we work with two difficult to catch horses.

how to invest in the right gear

01 November, 2013

Horses can be a black hole as far as money is concerned. With the way the expenses can add up, it can be easy to want to take a frugal approach to gear. But there are a few things we feel are worth their weight in gold as far as horse longevity and handling go. Natural materials (leather, wood, rawhide, wool) can be kept clean and cared for so they will last for years and years. Well-made tack and gear are a big cost up front, but in the long run can work out to less cost over the course of a lifetime because they don't break down or lead to vet bills.

if it’s important, do it every ride

01 October, 2013

It's easy to lose track of things while you're riding. It's easy to focus on problems, or cultivate new skills. And yet, horse learn through repetition, so the only way to ensure they learn something and remember it is to practice it all the time.

The Authors

Hopefully we've made it clear we're not professionals. The truth is, we both have careers that overlap not at all with our interest in horses. Robin owns a web design company, and Brian works at the University of Iowa.

That said, we consider ourselves amateurs in the true since of the word. We love learning about horsemanship, and are constantly attempting to refine the way we handle our horses.

We have noticed there seems to be a gap in the horse world between people whose entire lives revolve around horses and people who are recreational riders. We feel this is unfortunate, because it leads to nonprofessionals thinking they need a trainer to train their horse, which in turn suggests that what they do in between that training doesn't matter. This kind of thinking causes a lot of problems.

In our years of not being professionals at this, we have learned a lot and come a long way. We now have a pretty good thing going, even though we don’t get to the barn every day. These articles aim to address problems we have worked through ourselves and now often see other people struggling with.

Atom ·