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Most of my clients are self-motivated, goal-oriented, results-driven, time-management people. Everything a horse is not. So it would be fair to say that sometimes getting the acceptance of FOUNDATION before SPECIALIZATION can be a tough sell. And this makes UNDERSTANDING UNDER SADDLE more dificult for you and your horse.
But if we you truely want to create a bond with your horse and begin a training program based on a solid foundation without the introduction of fear you need to use a building block approach that begins in an area just outside your horse’s comfort level and slowly begins to expand that bubble and in order to create courage, confidence and competence.
You must become the better horse by PLAYING HORSE GAMES BY HORSE RULES.

If we take the time initially to build a good foundation then when it comes time to teach more advanced lessons it will be a win/win situation because your horse will be both mentally and physically ready for the challenge, the training at that point will proceed at a faster rate and you as the rider will be more confident because you know what to expect from your horse. You are also beginning to understand how Under Saddle uses the Foundation Training both you and your horse have learned.
My name is Dave Hickman and I am an Equine Canada Competition Coach and a Chris Irwin Certified Trainer. My goal was to build a website to help horse owners start their horses or continue and advance the training based on the building block approach that I spoke of earlier.

I believe there is not enough time spent on groundwork and foundation training on both the young and the not so young horse before we begin riding. Everything I am suggesting you teach your horse on the ground would be used once you are in the saddle. When we begin Training Tips under saddle you will see how the Foundation ground work will give you a more relaxed, willing horse who understands what you are asking him/her to do. Even if you have riden your horse for years I am positive these ground training exercises and lessons will improve your confidence when riding and help your horse understand what you are expecting of him/her.

At any time you can TEST YOU TEACHING by taking a quiz based on the TRAINING TIPS lessons.They are completely interactive, free, fun, and self-marking.

Take the time to understand your horse’s condition, training level and knowledge base. You will gain confidence because you now know what to expect from your horse. You will improve your training skills and your horse will have widened his/her comfort level, learned to moved relaxed, and begin to build a bond, trust and respect for you – THE BETTER HORSE.

Your horse will thank you.

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FOUNDATION before SPECIALIZATION

Proper Foundation Training will prepare both you and your horse for work under saddle.

Your horse will be both mentally and physically prepared for this work because you took the time to use the Building Block approach to his/her training slowly widening the bubble of comfort building courage, confidence and competence.

Your level of horsemanship and confidence will rise because you know what to expect from your horse and you have learned to Play Horse Games by Horse Rules.

Spend Time with Your Horse

You may have to compete against someone who is more talented and you may have to compete with someone who is better mounted BUT you should never have to compete with someone who is better prepared

Understanding Under Saddle

By applying the Foundation work Under Saddle your horse will know what you are asking of him/her because you are talking in a language he/she can understand with no grey areas. Because you have taken the time to put a good Foundation on him/her your horse will be more relaxed under saddle and therefore able to learn.The fight or flight instinct will have been replaced by a learned response. You will feel much more confident because you know what to expect from your horse. It is a win/win.