The Art of Natural Dressage

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 Post subject: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2015 1:33 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 8:45 pm
Posts: 3
I nearly forgot to introduce myself, because I´m so busy with reading everything :green:
But now T thought of it, so: hello everyone! I came here because of Romys very interesting diary in another forum and i´ve decided that i want to read more :smile:
I will probably read a lot more than wirte things down... i dont like to write, when i allready know in my head what to say, and while thinking of it i often find some answers for myself. But we´ll see :D Just don´t wonder if you won´t read a lot from me.

Now to myself. I come from Germany, Lower Saxony an have a German Riding Pony which is 11 years old now. I have her since she´s 4 years old and at the beginning we were riding the classic way, dressage and jumping, a few turnaments... she is my first own horse (I´m 26 now) and i always wanted more than just the riding thing... so i started searching and we´re still on our way. I began with groundwork an al little bit of parelli trainig sessions a few years ago... maybe 3 years ago. I went on to Clicker-Training maybe 1 year ago and now I´m here :) a stopped riding everyday since my horse has the chance to go to the pasture everyday. 1,5 years ago she moved to a stable where the horeses went outside in a big herd (22 horeses) everyday. But in the winter ist was only for 4 hours, so i decided to move again, and since the beginning of 2015 i´m in a new stable. Since July she is in a free stall barn, but I´m not quite sure if she really likes it. The other possibility is to be in a big box for a few hours and be on the pasture (in summer) or paddock (in winter) most of the time (at least 10 hours in winter). So I don´t have to ride everyday because she could move on her own. With that I made the experience that my pony is really happy just being with the others horses and does´nt want to do something with me anymore.
Now I´m thinking about riding (because I really like it!) or not and what to do instead... going for a walk ist mostly eating grass and other time being afraid of being alone.
I already started reading Allas diary and it kind of made me happy that I´m not alone with a horse who prefers beeing in the herd and not interacting with me. I´m just not sure if i will be happy with that anytime. But I´m not through with the diary yet, so i´m interested in how it goes on.
I´ll keep reading and thinking everything over.
Yesterday it was just raining so I went to the stable with an umbrella and clickered my pony not beeing afraid of it. She came to me on her own after the other two horeses where bored and liked it to getting food for coming under the umbrella. So this worked well.

Now I´m looking forward to read a lot in here and getting inspired :yes:


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2015 3:19 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6067
Location: Dresden, Germany
Hi Elin, how wonderful that you have joined us! :) The forum has become a bit of an archive with only a handful of active members at the moment. But if you prefer reading anyway, I guess that will be no problem for you - and if you have any questions, I am always here to discuss, or to give you links to discussions about almost any topic. :smile:

Elin wrote:
I already started reading Allas diary and it kind of made me happy that I´m not alone with a horse who prefers beeing in the herd and not interacting with me. I´m just not sure if i will be happy with that anytime. But I´m not through with the diary yet, so i´m interested in how it goes on.


I am sure that it won't stay like that. Lots of people have this difficulty when they start interacting with their horses based on free choice, but usually the horses get interested as soon as they see that humans are fun and have something to offer, not only to ask.

Enjoy the forum! :f:

Best wishes,
Romy


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2015 8:37 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2013 7:25 am
Posts: 58
Welcome Elin, I'm sure you will get a lot of ideas and tips here :)

Romy, can I ask you, in which other forum you have a diary? :)


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2015 11:13 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6067
Location: Dresden, Germany
So nice that you are back, Marlene! :sun:

Marlene wrote:
Romy, can I ask you, in which other forum you have a diary? :)


Well, it's not a real diary, more like a place to post pictures and videos and discuss a little. I started it when the diary section of that forum got separated into a part for children and a part for everyone else (which was not accessible for children), but as there was only one child, this meant she was all alone. So I thought I'd keep her company by starting another diary... Now that girl is gone and the diary somehow turned into a place where sometimes I write down some general thoughts, post some pictures or discuss things with other people. But at least concerning my own contributions, there is almost nothing over there that I haven't written here, and usually in much more detail.

Anyway, it's here: http://forum.reitwaisen.de and this is the diary: TitSumPiBa und Kinder


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2015 1:33 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 8:45 pm
Posts: 3
Yes, this forum is much more detailed, thats why I´m here ;)

I´m not quite sure what to do right now...
last time I was at the stable I went into the riding hall with my horse to do some playing and to lunge her, because I thougt she needed some training again. I wanted her to get in a better condition, so I decided to do some "work" with her every 2-3 days. She was realy happy in there, and that was new. Normally she wanted do go outside again in the moment we enter the hall. But this time it was different. She could walk outside everytime she wanted to, but she walked insde again on her own, leaving the grass behind her to do some playing. That was really great.
But when I asked her for lunging, she said no. I´m quite sure she knew what I asked her for, she understood what I wanted. And she stood there, putting her feet into the ground and when I asked again tourned her head away and went outside or away from me. This happend a few times and so I decided to put the lunge away and try it free. That did´nt work either. I think she´s happy with all the new things we´re doing, but when it comes to the old things (she had to do even if she did´nt want to) she decides to not doing them. And for the first time I think I accepted her "no".
But now I´m here with the two hearts fighting against one another. I felt that I really did´nt want to froce her to do the lunging. That did´nt feel right. But on the other side she really needs some training again or she will probably get ill. Actually she has definitely too less agitation.


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 7:05 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6067
Location: Dresden, Germany
I guess this is a dilemma that most of us have and nobody can solve while getting the best of both sides. Probably it won't be possible to do purely free choice training and still get the same level of physical fitness that you'd get when riding or lunging for one hour each day. If you are indeed convinced that this physical work is necessary and that your horse will get ill otherwise, then perhaps there will have to be sessions that are not free choice. Or at least for me it was necessary and helpful to make a choice at one point, otherwise I guess I'd spent my life worrying and complaining because I want both at the same time. Personally, I have opted for free choice even this reduces the amount of movement that my horses get.

But then probably for me this has been easier than for some other people as I have never been a firm believer in the argument that a horse (or animals in general) cannot live without being worked by a human. I guess I just know too many horses, cows, sheep, guinea pigs and all kinds of other animals who are doing quite well. And humans too, by the way. I guess if the world worked the other way around, our horses would write in internet forums and discuss whether it is possible to prevent their humans from getting seriously ill without making them go to the gym for at least an hour a day. And they would have a point - movement is good, and most of us get way too little of it. I just wonder how tight the link is between getting less movement than optimal and inevitably getting ill. I am wondering whether these days horse people aren't sometimes losing perspective a bit but make a huge problem out of everything, simply because it's possible to do so (of course I don't mean you, Elin :smile:).


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 4:25 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 27, 2012 9:54 am
Posts: 154
Location: Dresden, Germany
I actually have the same thought like Romy but if you really want to keep her fit you can do it in a playful way. For example running with her across the pasture or riding hall or if you have the possibility go with her for long walks and exploring new things. I think human and horse both have fun and as long as it is fun nobody has to worry.

Welcome here in the forum, Elin :) :f:.


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 Post subject: Re: Hello everyone
PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2015 9:15 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 8:45 pm
Posts: 3
Thank you, Nora and Romy :)

I had the thought with the gym, too. I don´t like it either ;) and I think me and my horse don´t like the lunging, so we quit it at least for a while. Perhaps we´ll find a way of lunging that is fun at some time.
Riding is a bit different. The first time of warm-up is boring, but later when we could do some canter and a lot of different things in a short time we both like ist. So I have to find a way to do an interesting warm up - thats easier to say than to do actually, but i´ll try my best.
Going for a walk is more like going and eat so much grass you can get :D so it´s probably more bad than good for her condition. But i´m happy that she goes for a walk at all, because not much time ago she wanted to go back to the stable immediately. We train on that but we can´t far either. It´s really more a short, well kown round with a lot of grass-eating.
The playing on pasture and riding hall is what we tried, but most of the time she seems to think "Oh, you run? Okay, i´ll be there in a minute, wait" :D not every time, but most of the time. And I feel that this is a bit like with us humans, too - when we´re not trained, we hate running, because it´s so exhausting. We´ll see how we can solve that.
Today I just went to the pasture and groomed her and sorted her tail and she enjoyed the massage :) that was so nice and peaceful :D


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