Higher level movements with horses, when they are done well are beautiful, with softness, lightness, balance, rhythm, symmetry and show harmony in the horse and human relationship. It is easy to feel daunted – or even intimidated at the prospect of trying to learn how to take our own horses to that level.
The start of this path is often slow, but the start is the most important part of all, because unless the very first committed step is taken, the goal will remain out of reach.
If we are not patient and do not take time for the horse to understand what we want, the result will not be beautiful, because force will have to be used. If training is rushed, force must be used. If force is used, the horse will be always be diminished and more likely to break down in body, mind or spirit. Xenonophon knew very well in his horse training experience even in c350 BC that anything forced was not beautiful.
The biggest problem horses have with humans is the humans lack of patience and sympathy.
Take the first steps, go slowly, study carefully, learn your craft well, be sympathetic and be patient.
Bent Branderup and his Frederiksborger, Zarif aged 18
Myself and Sunny Boy, Welsh X aged 21