Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout. Equine Research Foundation
Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout.
Home > Horsemanship  
Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout. Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout.
Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout.

Horsemanship Vacations - Immerse Yourself in Horses

See what people do during their equestrian vacations and internships at the Equine Research Foundation. These photos provide a sampling of our horsemanship activities, including horse training and handling, riding, and care. These horses and participants have learned our horsemanship methods and so know what to do. Please do not try what you see here unless you have been properly instructed and your horse has been properly trained.

For photos of ongoing research activities, visit our horse research pictures page.

HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Groundwork For Good Relationships

Driving through cones.
Target for head lowering.
Games on the ground.
Working on lateral flexion.
Circling a horse.
Ball desensitization.

Groundwork.

 

Good horsemanship starts on the ground. Equestrian vacation and internship participants learn how to get their horses to respond to them using body language based on equine behavior.

 

 

Horses can be taught to perform all sorts of behaviors and be light on the lead rope. The Pinto is walking figure-eight patterns around the cones while the trainer stands still.

 

 

With positive reinforcement and target training, behaviors such as lowering the head are taught easily, with no force or pressure.

 

 

Groundwork helps teach respect. Once a good human/horse relationship is established all sorts of games can be played, which exercises not only the horse's body but also the mind.

 

 

Horse behaviors that are useful in the saddle, such as lateral bending, can be taught from the ground first. This makes transfer to the saddle easier and safer.

 

 

Circling the horse a few times in each direction and in each gait allows the rider who strives for good horsemanship to look for any potential problems, either physical or mental, before getting in the saddle.

 

 

Desensitizing horses to all sorts of unusual sights, sounds, and smells on the ground better prepares them for the trail.


HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Horseback Riding Through Good Horsemanship



Horseback riding in the surf.
Horseback riding on the beach.

 


Once good on the ground, horse riding becomes fun and relaxing.

Trail riding becomes more pleasurable once good relationships are established and bonds form between horses and their riders.

 

 

Optional beach excursions for horseback riding occur along the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The ride starts off in the sand dunes where an assortment of flowering succulents grow. There is always a chance of seeing deer or a fox crossing these dunes. From the dunes we head for the wide open beach. This is a good opportunity to see dolphins, porpoises, sea lions, harbor seals, otters, an assortment of seabirds, and even the occasional whale.

 

 


HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Horse Training Clinics

Horse clinic.
Horse clinic training.
Horse clinic frisbee.
Horse clinic crossing tarp.
Horse clinic overview.
Positive reinforcement tools.

Horse clinic group.

 

The Equine Research Foundation conducts positive reinforcement horse training clinics in the western states. For more information, please see our positive reinforcement clinics page. With positive reinforcement, all kinds of behaviors can be taught including behaving politely around food, lifting feet for cleaning, standing quietly for farrier and vet care, trailer loading and unloading, the possibilities are endless. Horses become highly motivated and eagerly seek the "right answer." Training becomes enjoyable, exciting, and stress-free.

Equine Research Foundation clinic participants and their horses learn about positive reinforcement and good horsemanship in this Oregon facility.

Equine Research Foundation clinician, Jerry Ingersoll, leads a discussion on horsemanship during a positive reinforcement clinic.

 

Horse clinic talk.

 

Positive reinforcement horse training clinics help horses better deal with unusual situations. Horses learn to follow and focus on a target (an object attached to a handle), which helps them accept strange objects, such as fuzzy purple bunnies.

Not only is target training the start to teaching horses to play Frisbee, it also can be used to train horses to go to a stationary target and remain there until called off.

Positive reinforcement works wonders in helping horses overcome fear and resistance and become braver.

Clinician Dr. Evelyn B. Hanggi and her Missouri Foxtrotter demonstrating following at liberty after positive reinforcement training.

 

Horse clinic trotting at liberty.

 

The Equine Research Foundation positive reinforcement training tools: a closeable belted pouch, a handheld target, a clicker with wrist coil for initial training, a stationary target (not shown), thin leather gloves, food that horses like and, most importantly, knowledge. The training tool starter kit is available to participants through the Equine Research Foundation. Please contact us or check back in the future to see when kits will be available to nonparticipants.


HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Having Fun With Horses

Fun with horses.
Fun with horses. Fun with horses. Fun with horses. Fun with horses.
Fun with horses.

Fun with horses.Fun with horses.
Fun with horses.

HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

More Positive Reinforcement Training

Horse entering trailer.
Horse leaving trailer.
Horse lifting feet.Horse playing Frisbee.
Horse overcoming fear.

Fun and useful behaviors for training, handling, and care can be taught through positive reinforcement.

 

It's an excellent method for training behaviors such as:

  • trailer loading on only a hand gesture - no whips, no ropes, no force

  • unloading just as easily using a target

  • lifting feet on a verbal cue

  • playing games

  • becoming braver around all sorts of odd things

 

The possibilities are limited only by imagination.


HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Habituation and Desensitization

Horse overcoming instincts. Because horses are prey animals they are naturally wary of the unknown. This instinct, although a lifesaver for horses in the wild, can be hazardous for humans. Proper training helps horses relax around the unexpected. The result? A much safer partnership.

HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Eclectic Horsemanship

Horsemanship - haltering.Horsemanship - side pass crop.
Horsemanship - jumping.
Horsemanship - group knee halter.
Horsemanship - group games.

Techniques based on natural horse behavior and animal cognition make training from the ground fun and rewarding.


These interactions are based on herd behavior, equine language, and psychology.


Understanding through communication rather than intimidation through fear is the basis of the Equine Research Foundation's philosophy of horsemanship.


HORSEMANSHIP Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout. Top of Page

Some of the photos on this page were taken when the Equine Research Foundation was associated with the research-based Earthwatch. Today's programs include a greater emphasis on horse behavior, horsemanship, training, and riding.

If you'd like to learn more about equine thinking, perception, and behavior, building relationships with and training horses or working through human-horse problems, we invite you to:

Copyright Notice: All literature and photographs on this website are the exclusive property of the Equine Research Foundation or the scientific journals in which articles appear. The literature and photographs may not be downloaded or reproduced, copied, used or altered in any way without the written permission of the Equine Research Foundation.

Equine Research Foundation - colored dot used for page layout.

Home
Site Map
About Us

Horse Vacations

Internships

Volunteering

Schedules & Prices
Accommodations
Clinics
Consultation
Publications
Donations
Employment
People Say
Horsemanship Pics
Research Pics
Contact Us
Equine Blog

Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout.

Site Accessibility Information
Site design is by Equine Research Foundation and naftatrade.com and accessible.org,
specialists in practical accessible website designs.
Equine Research Foundation - transparent dot used for page layout.
Copyright © 2001-2014
Equine Research Foundation
P. O. Box 1900, Aptos, CA 95001
Tel: (831) 662-9577, Email: EquiResF@aol.com