PostHeaderIcon Horsemanship Clinic Reflections-Journey to Parelli Level 4

Three day Horsemanship clinic with Tony and Jennifer Vaught was amazing. I have some advice and training instructions upon which to reflect. I’ll be keeping this in my inner self.

Cisco and I are back being “together” when I ride. Our relationship is stronger. My ability to communicate with Cisco has improved. This is both on the ground and in the saddle.

The magic started this weekend. I rode a lot without using the reins. I didn’t ride without the bridle. The bridle was a safety net during some of the patterns we did Friday afternoon. One of these patterns was the barrel pattern

Remember my last blog when I wondered if someone was training Cisco at night because I couldn’t be “that good of a trainer”! I found out this weekend that Jenny had trained Cisco to do the things that had amazed me. He already knew this stuff! These horses keep secrets from their owners!

Cisco is sensitive and he worries about things. My body can get too loud or too big and this terminates my communication with him. He goes into right brain survival. keeping him confident and mentally strong is my goal. Neither Sage nor Velvet were as sensitive as Cisco. They just snorted on me when my body language was too strong.

Both Tony and Jenny are amazing instructors. The explanations, their exercises, their attention to all the riders is beyond my ability to explain. I’m so thankful to be their student! They teach humans and develop horses at Harmony Horsemanship Riding Center in Hiawatha, Kansas. I urge you to contact them and start taking lessons. Join us for clinics and lessons.

Cisco wanted to be a Halloween horse on Satuday afternoon. I asked him to wait until all the riders in the clinic were confidently riding their horses. He agreed. I got the mask and treats out. This is what people saw when they diverted their attention from the riding task.

Cisco the Halloween Horse

Cisco and the Halloween Monster



I vowed that Cisco and I would jump the bigger barrels this weekend. There they were this morning. Two blue barrels nestled together. The barrels spent all morning tempting me. Finally, the barrel call was too big to ignore. I asked Cisco to do a slow trot to the barrels. My body language urged him on when we arrived at the barrels. Cisco had a moment of indecision, but decided to go for it. Three legs sailed over the barrels! One back leg did not sail over the barrels. Instead, that back leg decided to step on a barrel. A loud crash reverberated throughout the arena as the two barrels knocked apart. Cisco recovered and we remained upright! Tony came over to the siren barrels and separated them. Their call was silenced, but my goal had been met. The Level 4 task is to jump a set of barrels and then another set of barrels while holding a carrot stick in each hand. No hands jumping! Piece of cake!

It was a great weekend. I would like winter to stay away for a couple more months! I wanna ride!

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