Category: Foran-A-Gram: Horse Training & Fun Stuff

Most Important Slide Stop Exercise: Up & Around

The most important part of the slide stop is the approach. Here is a great exercise to help you with that run. We took this video right before leaving to Reining By the Bay.

Feel free to watch how this exercise helped in the show pen. This is Zins Rowdy Whiz’s derby run from Reining By the Bay where he ended up Reserve Champion (tie) in the L1.

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Part 2: Interview with Arek Boulding

Tom and Arek discuss the following:

  1. How to shoe a young horse
  2. How to shoe a horse based on their disciplines
  3. The trend of barefoot vs. horse shoes

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The Road to the Derby: Spin Exercises

King of the Coast (Sleipner LLC) and Daphne Thompson show a great exercise to work on the spin: side pass the box in order to keep your horse’s shoulders up.


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Top 10 Reasons to Become a Horse Trainer

Top 10 Reasons To Become A Horse Trainer

image1 (image from myphonemd)

  1. You love the taste of dust and oddly enough enjoy watching the shower water turn brown as it runs down your leg.
  2. You prefer the smell of sun screen to cologne or perfume.
  3. Teaching people to ride sounds like the easiest job on earth.
  4. You enjoy visiting exotic locales like OKC and Amarillo.
  5. You always got an “A” in grammar school for playing in the sand box.
  6. You were sold by the fabulous retirement plan.
  7. It provides more opportunities to test out your health insurance.
  8. Why work 9 to 5 when you can work around the clock 7 days a week?
  9. You decided you were too squeamish to be a brain surgeon and too afraid of heights to be a rocket scientist so that left horse training.
  10. Who doesn’t want to be a cowboy?

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10 Things Your Trainer May Be Thinking During Your Lesson


photo credit: Roberta McCarty

10) I wonder if they’d notice if I just ran a recording – “Sit back, heels down, keep looking ahead…”

9) I better take them off the horse and just teach them the difference between left and right.

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Horse Wrecks! (Part 1: How to avoid them)

Horse Wrecks: How to avoid them

Step 1 – Hobble Training

 Video below


Art by: Will James

Starting a colt can be one of the most rewarding experiences for a horseman. It’s truly a magical thing taking a wild herd animal with intense instincts telling it to run or even fight, and within a few short lessons, being able to build its trust and confidence and make it a partner. One moment it’s trying to flee for its life and the next, you’re loping around in the arena and teaching it new things.

Still, we’ve all witnessed disasters when starting a horse. Almost always, these wrecks can be avoided with patience and proper horsemanship. Understanding that we are dealing with a herd animal as opposed to a domesticated dog or cat is key. More than anything, the horse wants to flee.

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Tackle Life’s (Lead) Changes!

Step by step:

How to develop a confident and correct lead change with your partner

This video is a sneak peak of what our premium content will contain. Happy lead changing! Please email us or comment below with any questions.

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Baby Steps: Learning to spin

How to begin teaching your steed to spin!



photo credit luda-stock


Electric Spider – 2 year old colt by Electric Code

Stay tuned for more turn exercises and to stay up to date on Electric Spider’s progress!

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9 Reasons To Buy Your Kid A Horse

9) The biggest problem they’ll have is their video game playing skills will suffer, as they’ll be spending too much time outside.

8) The only narcotics they’ll be exposed to are bute and banamine.

7) The meanest streets they’ll have to walk down will be bridle paths.

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Spin to Win

Side-Pass The Box

            Another way to consider what a horse is doing when spinning is: The horse is side-passing at the trot with their front legs while rocking back on their hocks. That is to say, the horse should be crossing one front leg over the other with every step while drawing a small triangle with its inside hind foot.

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Is Your Horse a Democrat or Republican?

Doesn’t matter…

Top 10 reasons your horse should be president




10)  He has incredible influence over people- If he can convince a judge his owner knows how to ride, he can bring peace to the Middle East.


9) He’s a great compromiser- “Ok, if you promise to quit sticking those spurs into me, I promise to quit trying to buck you off.
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Don’t Waste Your Money

Part 3

“Practice Makes Perfect”12825133_10153414951093316_1434809981_n Photo Credit: Mark Blakley


I approach the lead change in two way depending on my horse. Sometimes I will counter canter both ways to really combat his anticipation. Also, when loping through the center of my circle, I will ask him to get straight and will even set him up for a change but then will continue on my same circle. Secondly, I will sometimes change in the middle then continue in the same direction on the counter lead. I don’t avoid changing as I think the lead change then can become the forbidden fruit and therefore a bigger deal than it has to be. I change often and will do so most of the time in my warmups – it helps the seasoned horse think he might be showing and it help the change become common place for the young horse.

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Don’t Waste Your Money

Part Two

“Nail your paid warmup”

IMG_3522 Photo Credit: Mark Blakley


Horses learn through repetition, so the more we show them, the more they begin to anticipate maneuvers. To combat this anticipation, try to stay focused on what your horse is thinking and do the opposite. An easy example is counter cantering through the middle. A lot of show horses can become too “hair trigger” about the lead change in the middle to hold them off with the inside leg and only allow them to change when they’re not anticipating the change. Another example would be asking them to slow down in a fast circle in different spots other then the middle. Keep them thinking about you.

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Don’t Waste Your Money

Part One

Get The Most Out Of Your Paid Warmup

IMG_5379 Photo Credit: Mark Blakley


The biggest bang you will ever get for your buck at a horse show is the five minutes alone with your horse in the show arena. Today’s reiner is sophisticated, and, assuming you show reiners, I expect that you’ve probably spent time doing warmups. Let’s make sure you get the most out of your time in the arena.




It’s very important that your horse believes that he is showing. Take the time to ready him in more or less the same way you would if you were actually competing. Lope him down; do prep for stops and turns; trot him into his face, etc. Some older horses become so wise to the warm-up plan, I even throw chaps on and have someone groom him at the back gate and remove the nose band so I can fool my steed into thinking he’s actually showing. If possible, I try to get a person to sit in the judge’s chair. Horses learn through repetition and many problems they develop are unique to the show pen and can only be fixed in a show pen environment – it’s your job to accurately recreate that when you pay for a warm up.

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Don’t Be Your Own Worst Enemy

Winning The Mental Game


Every equestrian is an athlete and we have a four-legged, thinking, emotional, reactive partner who is very much affected by our mental state. While sports psychology is very important to all athletes in every kind of sport, I think that equestrians take it to a whole new level.

We all know that horses can sense our emotional state. When a rider is nervous, their horse is going to react usually for the worse. If a rider is tense, they’re going to reflect that body language in their movement. If the rider is too intense and too wound up with a desire to win, their horse may over perform as well.

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Back That Thing Up

Back That Thing Up


Improved Backing Strategies

Whether you’re preparing for a horse show or just trying to make your horse more handy, there are three cues to keep in mind when working on the back up.  These cues will help develop a better trained, more responsive horse.  Remember, everything you work on with a horse is connected to another part of that animal’s feel.  In other words, when I work on my horse’s backing up, it is also establishing more connection between my seat and the horse’s stride, it is helping him stay light and responsive to the bridle reins, and it aids in his stopping in a more dynamic fashion.   

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