January. 22, 2020 – Ask Monty Newsletter

Question: How do you train a horse for a vulnerable rider?

Common sense tells us that there are certain breeds/temperaments that would be better suited to these [vulnerable] riders, even having taken this into consideration, are there any extra measures you like to put in place when starting horses when you know your riders will be little more delicate or vulnerable?

Monty’s Answer:

Believe me, to read your words once more with even the slightest assumption that I would agree with your early comments in this segment, the first comment has to do with breeds. While it’s true that a final reading of the history of some breeds will prove to be less apt to act out dangerously with the first rider, every horseman should assume that every horse, no matter the breed is apt to act out dangerously with the first rider. All of Equus is related, and all of Equus has experienced 50 million years of acquiring their natural tendencies. It is scary that any one who has dealt with horses would place the humans described in the early riding of any breed of horse.

Please understand that I haven’t taken this into consideration because, in my opinion, that would be the definition of insanity. There are hundreds of extra measures that I use with every horse I put a first rider on. For me, sincerely, it would be a book. Join-Up would be the first chapter. The second chapter might describe the dozens of equipment objects which I use on every horse I start. Then there might be a chapter on the various ways to use that equipment. This would likely include the horses’ response to the equipment in question.

There would likely be a chapter on the spacial requirements for starting a horse. The footing, the fence, the size and many other elements which would speak to both safety and efficiency. There would be a chapter on the number of times the horse would be considered in the starting mode and not yet ready for even a slightly inexperienced or health hampered rider. It is my opinion that you can now see that this question would require as many as two or three books in order to promote the safety that I am referring to.

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