Alexia Cook Jumping | 41 Questions | 37 Answers

How to establish a strong relationship with a school horse?

How to establish a strong relationship with a school horse?
4
Extra treats at the end always seems to win them over(not too many) but as Kareen has said there is probably a lot of riders. If it is a horse you lease/loan from a riding school then things like ground work(free schooling/jumping) can work well to build up a bond
Of course he will remember you (horses have very good memories) but most students are just part of the crowd, and so he may not exactly distinguish you. If you treat him well, and especially if you ride him well, in balance, with light and consistent aids, he may look forward to your lessons.
I hate to say this but no, he won't remember you. But, if you are kind to him each time you ride him, currying him before he is saddled, giving him a pat or even just thinking that he is the best, most gorgeous horse in the world, he will appreciate it.
While you are riding, try hard to communicate, not just order the horse around. Learn to release your aids as soon as the horse responds. This doesn't mean throwing your reins away. It means releasing the pressure of hand, leg and seat as an instant reward for a correct response. Say thank you, scratch the withers, remember that it's "the release that teaches." :)
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