Equine Agility Facts and Humor
Horse - Equine Agility, right now, is not that much different than "Obstacle Course Class" or "Trail Classes" that have been going on at Horse Shows for as long as I can remember...and I am NOT young. Most of the "Equipment Pieces" are the same ones many of us having been using, our grandparents had used, for training horses, again, for as long as I can remember.
But now. Horse or Equine Agility is a Sport. And It is FUUUUUN! Just keep safety above all!
One of the best things about the Sport Now is that you can compete from home using a Video Camera and sending in your film to Agility Clubs that you will find On Line.
Keep in mind. Just like Dog Agility did as it grew in popularity, NEW Equine Agility Clubs will form with bigger and better Equine Agility Equipment, with Different Rules. And the Sport will continue to grow. So IF you do not like the fact that, right now, Horse Agility is not really like The True Sport of Animal Agility, get in there and change it! Work your Equine and Build New Equipment.
And if you and or your children or 4H Group like to color or doodle, Don't Miss Our Horse Agility Coloring Pages, check for it at the right in the Navigation.
Years Ago I came up with an idea for teaching Dog Disc/Frisbee with a bit of Humor. The response was incredible. People Loved It! It was included in a Dog Magazine and a Disc Dog Newsletter...in full. But the thing was, people remembered the photo and text. It helped them on the field training. You can see the page from our sister site herehttp://dogstarkennel.com/?id=195 I still, now and again, get notes from people that are finding the page for the first time.
It hit me one evening as I was falling asleep. I should do this for Horse Agility using the same technics and using my Breyers Horses. Now mind you. I am not as talented as many people are with their Breyer Horse Set Ups....but I think you will get the ideas I am trying to put across for people to have a Fun and Safe Time when they are working with their Equines with Horse Agility Equipment.
But Again I say: Your Personal Safety and the Safety of Your Equine is ALL UP TO YOU. I will not be held responsible for the way you handle your horse or misunderstood how to train it. I won't be held responsible for the way you set up or trained your own equine where you chose to work with it, or the items you decided to use to train it.
We are giving you ideas and suggestion. The Information on these pages in intended for your to stop and think about how you might enjoy this sport in a safe and responsible manner.
It is/this idea going to take some time for me to set all this up, so bare with us and visit this page often. The contents of this page for Equine Agility is still under construction.
We hope you will enjoy this page, we hope you get a smile. But most of all we hope you will take to heart the ideas we are trying to get across to you about the Sport of Horse - Equine Agility.
HOW HORSE and or EQUINE AGILITY STARTED!
Did YOU know that Animal Agility all started with Dogs at a Horse Show? Yes. Really. The Crofts Show in England, in the 1970's needed a Half Time Show. One of the Horse Officials came up with the idea of Dog's Running a Big Obstacle Course. The built equipment, trained dogs, and the CROWD LOVED IT! So it began, and off it took from there, it took off that very day. The Sport has grown and now includes any type of Species you can name... check our Sister Sites at the right to see some of our own animals enjoying agility and read how you can train yours.
ON WITH THE SHOW!
Equine Agility is for ALL Equine. Everyone that owns an Equine, unless there are Medical Reasons, is able to set up a few, inexpensive Pieces of Equipment and work with their equines.
UNLESS! You have a particularly Mean Spirited or Just Extra Spirited Horse. Or, If you do not have the skills to work with Equine.
Safety, Safety, Safety. Not just yours and the horse you are working with, but those all around you and the area you are in.
Or You Could Just... Grab your Breyer's Horses and or other Equine and Set Up a Display. Take Photos, move the equine and Set Up Your Next Display.
SAFETY ABOVE ALL!
No Matter What! When Talking about equipment, he words, "That'll Do.", or "Yeah, Just Try That", or "Should Work.", is not exceptable. Make sure. Dog Gonned Sure, that all equipment you use is Sturdy for the equines weight and working abilities, as well as have no sharp pieces or such, BEFORE YOU EVER EVEN THINK ABOUT USING IT.
much more to come new page and page being built - photos being taken.
EQUINE TAIL BOWS! USE THEM!
Have you ever been out on a Trail Ride with other riders and have your seen Bows in the Equines Tails? Did you think they were just decorating their animals?
Actually. Ribbons in Equine Tails have meaning. There are Five Colors You Should Look For AND KNOW WHAT THEY MEAN!
RED = EQUINE KICKS, STAY BACK!
BLUE = STALLION
PINK = MARE IN HEAT
YELLOW or White = EQUINE FOR SALE
GREEN or sometimes purple = YOUNG OR GREEN EQUINE. STAY BACK AND DON'T RUN YOUR EQUINES BY AT A FAST CLIP.
If you have an equine that needs a Bow in it's Tail, USE THEM! Let people know if your equine kicks or is for sale.
Here is a Hard Cold fact for you! If you are going to "Work Your Equine in Hand" learn how. Read Books. Read. Learn. Stay Safe.
The idea of Equine Agility is to get to the point of working your Equine at Liberty (loose without lead or halter) but to get there, you need to know how to work with your equine ON LEAD first. You need to know how to Cue your equine. You need to teach your Equine some Words. Those Words need to mean something to the Equine before you can move on from "on lead" to "liberty".
more coming soon
LEARNING MORE ABOUT HORSE AGILITY
Read all you can. Look at photos. Do Internet Searches. Learn as much as you can about Equine Agility BEFORE you grab your equine and start.
DRESS FOR THE PHOTOS!
Unless you are Lady Goldiva, you need to wear clothing. And clothing is a great idea for safety of skin with outdoors and around equine...
You don't have to get ready for a Ball or Fancy Dinner.
But you are not going to be pleased with photos if you are in your Barn Clothes either. Wear nice clothing when photos are taken. Down the road, in time that is, you will be much more proud of how you looked with your equine if you dress nicer.
IF YOUR HORSE IS SLEEPING OR LAYING IN THE SUN WHEN YOU ARE READY TO START WORKING IN THE EQUINE AGILITY COURSE...
If you are all ready to train and or video record your equine and your equine is taking a nap or laying out in the sun...give your equine a minute to "wake up". Go get your equine, but slowly. Give it lots of petting and praise. Then walk it in for a good grooming, lots of brushing and such before heading out to the Course. You will be glad you did.
Just think of how you are when someone wakes you and wants you to jump up and do something straight away...most of us "need a minute".
GROOMING YOUR EQUINE
Ever so important!
WORKING WITH OTHERS
Be kind to everyone that you come in contact with...you would think I would not have to say that.....but.
You never know. Anyone with the same interests as you have might become your best friend, a friend for life, or even your Spouse.
WORKING WITH ALL OTHERS AND THEIR EQUINE
Don't be an Equine Snob. Learn to enjoy everyone else that loves their equines as much as you love yours.
You might be surprised at who will become a very good friend if you would just talk to people and enjoy the Sport of Equine Agility together.
I am always surprised at the amount of Sbobbery in the Equine World. Stop It! People, and you never know who, are watching you!
You can make your own Horse Agility Equipment...just make sure it is safe to use and made to the size of the equine you are working with.
EQUIPMENT SIZE MATTERS!
Trying to squeeze a Draft Horse through a Tunnel made for Ponies?????!
more coming soon
ITEMS AROUND THE BARN THAT MIGHT BECOME HORSE AGILITY EQUIPMENT
There are all sorts of things a person COULD use to start Horse Agility. I have said before, I am not sure while Horse Agility has so many Trail Class and Starter Ground Training items....but it does. For now anyway. So look around your place. Make sure the items are safe to use and horse friendly (another way to say safe again) and start the fun.
more to come
YES. Training your foal on an Obstacle Course or even SOME of the Agility Equipment can be a very good idea and good for fun ground Training.
Teaching a young horse, equine to come to you, like to be with you, eating from your hand is all good for the young equine.
HOWEVER! And why do we have to keep repeating this to people that know better...but we do!
Do NOT let the foal Bite, Kick At, Rear Up On, Stand Up On Your Shoulders with their front feet. Do NOT let your foal or yearlings or any equine, push past you, push into you, grab you by the clothing.
While some people think this is cute...you are building a dangerous horse. Teach the young early to be respectful and how to behave around people.
So starting a colt or filly out on Agility Training...a very good idea...that is, right after Ground Training. Always work on Manners Training any time you are around a young equine, or full grown, equine, that needs to be taught or reminded.
HORSE "HEELING" OR TRAINING THE HORSE TO WALK BESIDE YOU
If you have ever done any Dog Training, you are steps ahead of the person that has not when it comes to Training Horse Agility. If you have Trained a Dog to Run An Agility Course, you are even further ahead.
The first thing you need to start, if your horse does no already, is to teach the horse/equine to walk with/beside you, on your right side.
THE LOOPTY LOOP
This is what you do when your equine refuses, or shies away from an object, keep walking calmly, go in a circle, small or large, and come back around to try it again. If your horse KNOWS what you want and has performed the Obstacle before, Loop around in a small circle and try again until they perform it again correctly....THEN PRAISE!
DON'T GET IN A HURRY
Seriously. Take your time. Plan on spending about 1/2 setting up the course, 1/2 hour working with the Equines (up to an hour for those that have been at it a week or more) and another 1/2 hour putting all the equipment away. YES. IT IS WORTH IT. Just do not get in such a rush or hurry that it sets your equine's training back.
TEACHING THE YOUR EQUINE THE TARP
TEACHING YOUR EQUINE THE FIGURE 8 WEAVE
This is easy. But go slow. Start the Barrels or whatever you use, far away from one another to start...then bring them in closer each day you train.
more to come
TEACHING YOUR EQUINE TO WEAVE THE POLES (or cones or whatever you have set on the ground)
TRAINING YOUR EQUINE TO JUMP THE JUMPS
Even if your horse Jumps in Competition with you riding, start with the Jumps lower when walking/running over them with your horse in hand (on lead).
Horses normally Jump. This Piece of Equipment does not really have to be taught to them. They jump logs in the field, they jump when they play. But with you walking them in lead, it might be new to it. Train Slow. Don't get in a hurry.
Keep your Jumps low when first training and raise them slower than you want to.
Soon Your Equine will be Jumping SAFELY right beside you. And with more training, more time spend training, your Equine will be Jumping at Liberty (no lead or halter) and on command or cue.
Remember....YOU will be Jumping these Jumps too. It might be a good idea to go out and practice YOUR Jumping without your horse first.
Horse - Equine Agility is a great way for the Human to also get into fitness shape!
THE HOOP JUMP
I laugh at anyone who thinks this is a new idea. It was NOT recently thought of. It is not new. I am sure people have been jumping their equine through hoops since humans first started working equine. Some added Fire, some used other Humans for their Jumps...nothing new here!
Ecclesiastes 1:9 (NIV) "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun."
Nothing about Horse Agility is new. It has just been rearranged again and called by a name we were not familiar with.
However! Keep in mind! Jumping Thru A Hoop IS New To YOUR Horse. Take your training slow and easy. Start with a very large, east to walk through Hoop and after walking near it, then more near it, passing it by a couple of times, YOU go through first, with your equine coming along, on lead, behind you (To the side, do not work your equine with it right behind you, over to the side and behind is correct.). Stop and give the equine time to look it over if he hesitates.
Praise and Reward every time the equine goes through the hoop until later training.
TRAINING YOUR HORSE TO STAND ON THE PEDESTAL
Start Low, use a piece of board, approx. 36" x 36", give or take, and use it for early Pedestal Training. Teach the equine to step up on the board on cue, just as you would a Pedestal. Teach the equine to stop with only two front feet on it, and to stop with only two back feet on it. Then teach the equine to place all four feet on the board on cue.
more coming soon
TRAINING YOUR EQUINE TO CROSS THE BRIDGE
TEACHING YOUR EQUINE TO WALK OVER THE TEETER TOTTER
FUN EVENTS AND HOLIDAYS
I have seen some really cute photos of people that are Dressed Up with Equine that are Dressed Up for Holidays and such, on the Agility Course. Make Agility FUN! KEEP AGILITY FUN!
And if that means you have or hold an event where you want to Dress Up and or Dress Up your Equine, as long as the outfit does not interfere with the equines movement about the course, have at it! Look at the difference in these photos.
However: This is an event, not for everyday or ever event.
IN THE WOODS FOR WILD (some call it Natural) HORSE AGILITY
Wild Horse Agility or Horse Agility in the Wild. There is a Difference!
Natural or Wild Agility is taking your equine out and Weaving Trees, using a Stomp as a Pedestal, using downed trees for your jumps, running through ditches... It is just having fun with your equine in "the Wild or Natural setting.
I would never recommend playing in the open, woods or no, off lead. You never know. A horse is a horse, is a horse, is a horse. Equine are Equine. You don't know just what they are thinking, but for most, a run in the woods, without you, seems like a lot of fun to them.
Just Remember! There is no such place as "In The Woods", as if it were a place of magic where you can play and camp and go to so you can cut Christmas Trees for free. If you do not own the woods you are working in, someone does. DO NOT JUST GO ONTO SOMEONES PROPERTY AND START USING IT FOR YOUR TRAINING GROUNDS. Ask Permission and if they say, "No." Do Not Train There!, Do Not Be There!
BECOMING A MENTOR OR AGILITY HORSE TRAINER OR JUST HELPING OTHERS START THEIR QUINE IN THE EQUINE AGILITY SPORT
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-- The Does My Butt Look Big In The Saddle Team
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 11:44:18 -0400