The Art of Natural Dressage

Working with the Horse's Initiative
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 11:01 am 

Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:54 pm
Posts: 13
Hi from Denmark

I am a huge fan of nature - and natural ways of doing everything. I beleive in trying to pay justice to all natural laws in all communication and interaction, both with animals and other people - an also in a more global context. There are a lot of things on this site that appeal to me and I like the way you guys discuss and try to illuminate all these many questions there are around being with horses. There are also issues and practises which here seem to be generally well accepted but where I have my concerns when it comes to the wellbeing of the horse - but I think that is the interesting part - that we do not all agree in everything and that we can exchange opinions and experiences.

For me horses are exceptionally interesting - in every way ...but I have become very carefull during the last many years. Not because of fear of the horses, but because I refuse to take part in that general globa movement the world of equitation is gliding through. I have worked with a lot of horses in my life - both my own ones and others. But at some point I just felt so unhappy about the whole thing, even thouigh I treid of course to find 'compromizes' with the horses so we got along fairly well - but it was only very seldom that I really felt that magic and beauty which I had dreamed of since I was a little girl. I was very little when that dream was still intact, because I had my first experiences with our own icelandic horse when I was around 5 years, and they were not especially positive because my parents misunderstood the poor creature completely - and I as a little child did not have much other choice than to believe that they were right - that there was something wrong with her because she refused to cooperate - of course there was not!

I have not seen a lot of clinicians or trainers live, but I have studied many of them theoretically. But I did once experience Klaus Ferdinand Hempfling at one of his seminars in Spain many years ago - and that was an eyeopener :love: and made me realize that I had to change direction. So I did try to start all over with the horse I had at that time, and it worked well enough for me to be more happy with the development - in fact the last horse I had was one I bred on an old mare of mine and with him I had not done too much damage before strting with Hempflings ideas, so that was not too bad a relationship. BUT - after he died several year ago I decided not to commit to another horse before I am absolutely sure that I can do it really right. So that is where I am now - thinking that horses are wonderful, beautiful (all of them in their own way :yes: ) and that maybe one day I will be one with such magnificent creature. But until I am sure I will manage that, I prefer to maintain my theoretical 'relationship' with them :) and somehow try to find the key to the whole thing!


PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 1:02 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 7:42 am
Posts: 2147
Location: Vienna, Austria
Welcome Dorthe! :f: Nice to have you here!

I often feel the dilemma of owning a horse in this part of the world and this era and on the other hand wanting to give the horse all the freedom it naturally needs to really be a horse. But for me it's a bit like the question whether I can bring a child into this world without knowing if I can be a good father. My answer is: I cannot know, but it's worth a try.

Same applies to horses in my opinion. I surely have made a lot of wrong choices and I'm sure there are a lot of people out there who would do much better with my horse than I do. But it's worth a try - for me and for my horse.

I am sure that you could give so much to a horse - so why wait? Do you think that a horse would be happier overall with his life, if you are one with it?
I know I'm being provocative here, but what I'm trying to say is that my goal in interacting with my horse is not necessarily to make him happier. That's a nice by-product of course! In an ideal world my horse's needs would be covered by his living conditions and his herd. He would not need me for that. I am just a friend, who gives a little love and receives a little. Nothing more, nothing less. In being that I am definitely not perfect, but flawed like any living creature on this planet. But does that really matter? We can still enrich our respective lives... :f:


The horse owes us nothing.

PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 2:22 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6077
Location: Dresden, Germany
Such a nice post, Volker. :smile:

Welcome, Dorthe! :) I hope you will enjoy the forum and find some things here that will be interesting for you and enrich your journey with horses, theoretically or practically. :f:

Best wishes,

PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 3:49 pm 

Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:54 pm
Posts: 13
Thank you Romy and also to you Volker

Indeed the first thing that happened when I read your reply Volker was that my heartbeat speeded up - so you have in fact provoked an emotional response :thumright: . I see your point - not bad at all, and you could be right. It is also interesting that you choose exactly the question of having a child to state an example, because in so many ways I think having a child and having a horse is similar. To mention just a few: They mirror us unmistakenly, it is an immense responsibility, the potential of making mistakes is enormous and they can have severe consequences, but the fruits of that tree are so very appealing (I dont have any children of my own yet, but my partner has - also with that I have become careful :roll: - they are wonderful children but watching a bit from outside I see so many things that could be different).

But at least with the horses the consequences of our mistakes are mostly less grave. I think we may in some ways compensate for our deficits in making the horse happy, by providing a natural life style for them where they have other horses to be with and of course by being clear but kind. But honestly - for me it would be important to feel sure I could make my horse really, really happy. For example my lovely labrador retriever - he loves when we spent time together, he enjoys when we walk, play, pet - whatever - he is happy when he can just be with me. I know it is a lot to ask for, but that is what I would like to have with my horse! With my last horse it was at least rudimentarily the case - he did like my company, and he did like to go out together with me, but it was not complete and that bothered me because it could have been. But anyway - it is not that I am suffering about it - it is just a decision that I still would like to get a bit further before I go into that again - and to have more time (and money) as well and the last two points tend to grow at diverging times ;) - and I have my dog who is at least not mirroring me that strongly like a horse would do, and that is at the moment I think exactly right - in fact he is influencing me positively with his joyful and smiling mind :friends:

Nevertheless - I thak you :f: for taking the time to give your input - it is in any case worth considering if I am perhaps too determined and stubborn in my approach!

PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 6:53 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 27, 2012 9:54 am
Posts: 154
Location: Dresden, Germany
Hello DK Natura,
nice that you are here in the forum and that you are interested in the forum. I wish you much fun in the forum.

PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:10 pm 

Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:54 pm
Posts: 13
Thank you so much Nora :f:
I am already having so much fun that I dont see how I can get to do any work the next couple of days. I never knew it would be so nice to be a forum member - but I also have to say that this forum is exceptionally positive :applause:
By the way I saw you on video with Pia (at least I think it was you) - what a nice couple you two are :love:

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