Sunday, September 27, 2009

where to start?

mmm, not sure where to start really. It's been a busy few days, lots of time spent with equines (Lydia now has a lesson at the club on Friday evening and Saturday morning) and even more time with the brain in overload.
As I said previously I have been searching on the www to fuel my interest in bitless riding. As a result of this I have joined a French forum of bitless riders/trainers. So far so good, bear with me dear readers.
Having joined this happy band of bitless bods I was somewhat taken aback to find myself castigated for using a hackamore, oops!!  In the spirit of learning, I asked for advice, one of the forum members, Donald , was very kind to suggest I try working on the ground with a cordeo (rope around the neck) and so here are the 'photos and some brief vids (thanks very much to Lydia) they are not of great quality as they were taken on my camera.

OK, bear with me some more. It was amazing! We could actually achieve quite a lot and he was just very chilled and listening. It's quite weird because you can really do nothing with the cordeo, no directions, no halts, it's just like an umbilical attachment that holds you together. We walked, trotted, reined back, lateral work basics and it was so much fun.
Bolstered up by our fun session yesterday, today I decided to try riding in the cordeo. Again my daughter was on hand to capture our amateur attempts. I started out in-hand, just reinforcing the halt voice aids (mmm, well it's pretty important when you have no reins, lol)
Then I got on and we walked, halted, changed direction, reined back. OMG it was so revealing! It highlights all the holes in your training but at the same time is really uplifting and I just know that I couldn't have done this last year.
The bitless write up is therefore still in the planning stage, each part is there in my head but it's going to be quite a lot of work to commit it to words on the page. I can say I'm very happy to have 'stumbled' across the cordeo and although it won't be part of my daily routine, it will be a regular session to check our progress.


Di said...

You say you couldn't have done it last year.
Moo looks so relaxed and "with you" I think it highlights your growing partnership that you can do this with him and the fact that you probably wouldn't have wanted to do it last year.

Claire said...

can't see me ever doing that! not the ridden work, anyway.

i think a lot of bitless people think more natural horsemanship, which a hackamore ain't, of course! :-)

trudi, can you read my second post of yesterday please? about treeless...

Kate said...

I don't have a problem with hackamores - they're a good option for certain horses. Enjoyed your cordeo explanation and demos - very interesting. I like to see people trying to do new things with their horses - as you say it tends to tell you where the training is and where it isn't pretty quickly.

trudi said...

Oh I shall go look Claire...two posts in one day! I missed that.

I do strongly believe that a hackamore is fine but I also see their side and it does seem a lot of 'action' with the shanks being quite long, however, any system is only as good as the hands that use it, lol and now I know where I need to work on mine. It's so exciting.

HorseOfCourse said...

Was it scary? Riding I mean.
I don't mind riding bareback, but I must confess that I get a bit anxiuos contemplating to ride just with a loop around the neck.
I am very tempted to try though...It is so boring to get old and sensible.
Well done both to you and Moo, and to Lydia the photographer!
Thanks for sharing!

Mandeigh said...

Blimy! He looks so chilled, not sure I would have the nerve to ride without a bridle, would love to though.

Cabruze said...

This is so interesting Trudi! I really look forward to your further posts on bitless. But my thoughts from your vids are - you'd've had the same great result without anything attached in front of Moo's withers. He's really listening to you! Lovely result which can only be due to (your) good training!

trudi said...

Thanks Jane. HofC, not scary but weird, think of the feeling you get when skinny dipping, slightly scary but at the same time the best release ever!! Try it and report back!
Mandeigh, I doubt I'd try it with your gales or without a school, I ain't THAT brave, lol.

HorseOfCourse said...

Oh what a lovely comment, Trudi!
I guess I will just have to try after that...
Will have to wait until next week though, we have the Danish trainer coming up, I'm to start lessons tomorrow.
As I had to ride bareback last time, he would probably think I've totally lost it if I turned up without a bridle this time!!!