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BLOG: Getting it right is about reading the signs

Amber goes back to groundwork with Wrangler in order to establish her role as leader. © Elsa Roberts

Amber goes back to groundwork with Wrangler in order to establish her role as leader.

© Elsa Roberts

 

Missed Lara's first two blogs? Catch up on blog one here and blog two here.

The process of building a solid foundation for our Brumbies is not just about ticking boxes. I believe a good teacher can recognise when a student is actually learning and at what point they have reached sensory overload. When your student is a horse it’s not always easy to spot! Sometimes a horse can keep on giving and giving and we just continue to build and build. But we also run the risk of ignoring subtle signs that our horse is no longer in the right frame of mind.

Three weeks into the Brumby challenge, Amber was working with Wrangler on her daily program. We were in the roundyard, he [Wrangler] was all saddled up and Amber was about to embark on their first ride together. But as we contemplated that moment, Amber quickly recognised that Wrangler’s body language was telling her in a subtle way that he was not ready. His posture had become braced; he had stopped blinking, and he was taking a shallow breath.

 

Moment of realisation - Amber, Wrangler & Lara observing Wrangler’s body language. © Elsa Roberts

Moment of realisation - Amber, Wrangler and Lara observing Wrangler’s body language.

© Elsa Roberts



Each and every day we had cause to celebrate that such a willing young horse was giving his very best and might now be ready to move to the next level. However, a major setback was about to happen if we had just ticked the boxes and ignored warning signs that he was not yet ready to move on. 

This experience reinforces the message that our horse must remain present in order to establish our core foundations. The lesson for us on that day was about taking a few steps back before Wangler could once again travel forward with us.

Good leadership is about recognising the warning signs before taking the next step. This means re-visiting previous lessons but the ultimate reward is being able to reconnect with your horse in order to progress to the next level.


Lara Beth Poynton
 

For further updates go to: Brumbydiaries/Lara Beth

2018 Naming Rights Partner, McDowells Herbal Australian Brumby Challenge

EQUITANA Melbourne, 15 to 18 November

Missed Lara's first two blogs? Catch up on blog one here and blog two here.

 

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