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Using Inner Calm to Influence Equine Behavior

Your example can often dictate a horse’s behavior.  This included both your physical and emotional example.  If your movements are sudden, jerky and abrupt, do not be surprised to see the same type of behavior from your horse.  If you, their leader, is frightened, startled, hyper or even distracted by too many thoughts going through your head while working with the horse, the horse will notice and act accordingly.  Focus on your work with the horse.  Make your mind and body calm with easy flowing movements.  Make sure you consciously breathe in and out, especially when your instinct is to hold your breath from nerves or other factors.  Even if you are not calm, this will help project calm to your horse.  When something occurs that is frightening or abrupt it is your obligation to keep calm and act as a guide to your horse in how to react to the situation.  From the horse’s perspective, if the rider is afraid, the world must be ending and the horse is justified in taking evasive action.  If the rider is calm, maybe the situation is not so bad and by following the rider’s example everything will be okay.  Be the leader, the authority figure, the answer for your horse by maintaining calm inside and out.