By developing a clear way of communicating, Andrew helps horses and people to overcome conflict and create authentic relationships.
I wasn’t born into a ‘horsey’ family and to this day I still live in a suburban neighbourhood and have a corporate job from Monday to Friday. Horses are a big part of my life and I can’t picture it without them, but at the same time I don’t let them consume every part of my life.
When I first started riding, I spent many years struggling to understand my horses and constantly feeling like I was more of a hindrance to their lives than someone of value. Eventually I stumbled upon liberty training and this changed the way I thought about horses forever. I started listening to them and what they had to say, rather than simply doing things the way I thought they should be done.
Andrew’s Training Philosophy
When you think about it, a horse could kill a human in a second if they really wanted to. They are so much more powerful and faster than us, yet they let us drag them around and do all sorts of crazy things to them. So I think it stands to reason that they are generally good natured animals. But why do so many people have so called ‘problem horses’ that are aggressive and/or unpredictable? I think that a lack of communication is generally the root cause of most problems we experience with horses. If only horses could verbally speak to us, we could explain to them that we will look after them and take care of all their worries, provided they listen when we ask them to do something. I’m pretty sure most horses would take that deal!
This is the basis of how I train my horses; by developing a clear way of communicating, so we can speak to one another without conflict or misunderstanding. Once the lines of communication are open, you can begin to create an authentic relationship with your horse. It’s not something that you do just in the arena, it’s in everything you do with them; from the way you feed them to the way you lead and groom them.
This simple philosophy provides the basis of how I approach anything and everything I do with horses; because if we can’t speak to each other, conflict is inevitable. Beyond this philosophy I have a set of guiding principles and general training methods that I use with horses. But I’m always flexible about how I use them based on each horse that I work with. This is also how I teach my students. I don’t advocate a specific method or process that works for every horse and rider. I teach people to equip themselves with a wide variety of knowledge, but then be flexible about applying that knowledge.
Watch Andrew’s series on Horse Training Mindsets on the EquiLivin App.
You will learn:
- How to have fun with your horse
- How to prevent boredom and undesirable behaviours
- How to create a positive mindset towards working in the arena
- Much, much more…