The Art of Natural Dressage

Working with the Horse's Initiative
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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 11:09 am 
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Thank you Romy! I'm happy you like it :D.

Unfortunately the other post in the groundwork section got lost and I haven't had the chance to see if there was any feedback. I think I will post it again there...

Anyway, I'm not sure if it's specific to the way Mucki learns, but he's very closely paying attention to my body. Just look at him watching my feet right at the start of the video - it's amazing! :love: He's watching and imitating me so closely sometimes, that it's actually putting me under pressure! I'm really having a hard time keeping my own balance and cadence right. I just hope I will learn to walk spanishingly as fast as he does, so I can keep up with him :D. The other thing is that he's crowding me a bit, because he wants to look what I do, so he faces my feet and turns toward me with every step. Well, I think I cannot have it all - all in all his Spanish walk is coming along nicely :cheers:...

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:31 am 
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We have been working on the seesaw again. I really love that thing! And so does Mucki by the way ;)
This time we tried to do a full turn on the board. This combines the benefits of the mountain goat stance and the balance training of the seesaw. This is work in progress of course - I'm posting it here for the record...

http://youtu.be/igdr-l6LcnM

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:55 pm 
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Please don't be mad at me Volker. I so love this video. It demonstrates so many of the wonderful parts of clicker training so very well. Technique especially. I put it on Clicker Training Horses.

Donald

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:39 pm 
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Oh, not mad at all - I'm flattered :blush:

It was a nice session - calm and productive. And strangely Mucki likes me to direct his feet :ieks:.

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 11:53 pm 
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You are using the hand motions I've been trying to establish people to standardize when doing clicker work, and any ground work ... the open palm to send, and the pointing fingers to draw...I wiggle mine, like the mare wiggles her nose on her foal's back.

I've been seeing some clicker trainers and followers suing the open palm to draw the horse to them. A stranger approaching the horse and reaching out to pat him might just get bumped and walked over.

Just one of my little rants. LOL

I did, did I not, see you lead the horse around with your hand pointed finger or fingers, and push, though not touching, the hindquarters away with your open palm?

I suspect Mucki is learning what pointing means. I knew dogs could learn it easily, but not horses. Now I must try pointing to a target. You are an inspiration.

Best, Don

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So say Don, Altea, and Bonnie the Wonder Filly.


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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 7:22 am 
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I'm afraid I have to disappoint :sad:. It'S hard to see on the video, but I also use the open palm to draw and the fingertips to yield. It's been a result of my auto-didactic fumblings ;). Originally I relied on just hip cues - hip bone pointing or drawing. I still use it in combination as you can see on the video. I added the hand cues, because hip cues are hard to do in some situations. On the mounting block for example.

I'm aware of your reservations about that kind of hand cues, but so far I can only say that I don't have any issues. Usually the stance when giving the drawing cue is very different to when you want to pat. I use a straight, extended arm and a slight drawing motion. Also the horse usually stops when it has reached the hand, so it would basically come to your patting hand ;).
Last but not least it comes very naturally for me to use the open hand to invite. I also use the open, cupped hand to let Mucki rest his back of his nose into it. And I wouldn't want him to move away when I want to touch him ;)
It all seems to fall together for me...

Donald Redux wrote:
I suspect Mucki is learning what pointing means. I knew dogs could learn it easily, but not horses. Now I must try pointing to a target. You are an inspiration.
Pointing has become an integral part of our training by and by. It has so many uses, especially pointing at his feet to move them separately. I also use it a lot for targeting scary objects when we are about to go ghost-busting :twisted: I point at the object, suggesting that we might check it out and defeat it. That, combined with nests of apple slices that I point out for him in the grass (by the way nice game to play for easter!), has made the pointing cue to something very interesting for Mucki.

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 6:19 am 
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Thank you for clarifying Volker. Various angles and times your hands are blocked by your body, visually, led me to assume.

In any case you and Mucki most certainly have your danced down to an art form. I could only hope to match it.

I am excited we are seeing bits of sun again here, not much, but a promise, so that I can work with Bonnie and Altea in much the same way.

I surveyed my lumber pile (left from various projects like barn building) today to see how much more I'd have to buy to make a balance bridge like yours. It occurred to me I could get two levels by using two (for safety) 4 x 8s, which I think I have in there somewhere. On one side they would give a four inch rise, but a quarter roll and they would give an 8 inch rise.

Clever, no? But then I'm always inventing things.

I will, as promised, now that I have my new computer and printer problems, and wireless system challenges pretty much solved, put pics or vids or both her at AND to show my new slow feeder trough in action.

Best wishes, Don

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Love is Trust, trust is All
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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:18 am 

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I love the seesaw video! Just great. :cheers: I want one!


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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 7:27 am 
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Thank you Kate! It's actually very easy to build. And so much fun! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:23 pm 
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This is a great. :) :clap: i wanted to return to it to remind myself of how it can be fun to learn about body balance in so many ways. shifting weight is a big thing for us now, i have long planned to build one like this.
can you share the dimensions of your seesaw?

i also just wanted to add how i love the way you integrate into your time with Nepomuk so much varied activities and time sharing - this is definitely an inspiration for me and the horses.thank you.

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:33 pm 
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Hmm. Not sure about the exact size of the seesaw. I'd say it's about 1 meter wide, about 2.5m long and maybe 4cm thick. This one has just a loose log under it, so it sometimes slides around a bit. I also built one where I screwed the log on in the middle, which worked even better.

Ok, now I did a rough sketch of the seesaw - hope this helps a bit:

Image
There are of course a hundred ways to built it, probably some better ways as well ;) This one is simple, but effective...

anat wrote:
i also just wanted to add how i love the way you integrate into your time with Nepomuk so much varied activities and time sharing - this is definitely an inspiration for me and the horses.thank you.
Thank you! Variety is something I really try to emphasise - it originated out of the necessity to keep Mucki interested and engaged.

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 12:04 pm 
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Whaoo!!! Volker, this is a great Thank you so much. :cheers: just what i needed.

i'm gonna order the wood in the next couple of days and build it.
i will put up the images of the Israeli version of your seesaw - as soon as it will be done.
thank you :f:

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 1:01 pm 
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anat wrote:
i will put up the images of the Israeli version of your seesaw - as soon as it will be done.
Oh yeah, looking forward to some pictures! :yes:

You may want to adjust the length of the seesaw according to the size of your horses. Mucki is rather compact...

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 1:31 pm 
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that is a good point! Tequila is also rather medium size, geronimo - well he is 93 cm or so and he is not that long.... but Hercules he has a unique ability to brake down any pedestal i make, he doesn't look that big (an average thoroughbred size) but somehow his size combine with strong body and stiffness can bend down any tree i found :funny: . i'm looking now for an aluminum pedestal since he broke down all three pedestals i build.
anyway - thanks again. :f: this is all significant input for us.

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 Post subject: Re: Nepomuk in motion!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 1:56 pm 
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Oh, a pedestal is the next big thing on my list. If you have any building/buying experiences to share, I would be very happy!

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