Horse Agility Training
with Sheila Reed
Are you interested in a spook-busting / horse agility day?
What's involved ? Who would it suit ?
It's all done in hand and starts with basic good manners- leading, standing still, avoiding barging, toe standing, getting in your space etc. It then moves on to the obstacle course - tunnels, tarpaulins, streamers, ramps, see saw and much more.
This is like a basic police horse training course and although most horses are a bit surprised at first, they seem to really enjoy it. The aim is a well-mannered, confident horse and to develop a respectful partnership between horse and handler. Horse agility is similar to dog agility and has its own competition league - however, you don't have to be interested in this to get a lot out of the training. It's suitable for anyone - minimum suggested age for horses is 2 years.
At the end of the training session is a little competition using the course, just to check you have been paying attention !
If you are interested and fancy a go at the above, please contact Judith Wilson by email findJudith@aol.com or mobile 07771 914447 for more information.
We successfully held a full day with Sheila back in May - as per the report below but if we have enough interest we can certainly run another day later in the year.
Rauri in the scary corner and Heston emerging from the plastic tunnel!
Agility day report
If you judged by the shouts of delight as a previously reluctant horse found the courage to go through a scary obstacle, the agility day could be declared a success.
On a very hot day in the lovely setting of Castle Barn Farm we had a great turn out. Bryony and Jasper, Pip and Heston, Jo and Rauiri, Nats and Paris, Caro and Iona, Laura and Star, Jane and Lucy with Miffy. Only Annitta didn't make it as Emily was lame.
Sheila Reid started off by demonstrating some basic handling and leadership techniques, she noticed that everyone was itching to get out onto the course. By now it was quite windy which added to the spookiness of the flapping flags and balloons and the "tunnel of satan" ( Iona's view apparently ). Add to that, a tarpaulin, a bridge, see saw and all manner of scary things and you can see why the first 30 minutes looked like mayhem to an observer.
With Sheila's guidance, all settled well. Very professional performances from Iona and Paris who were both in their element and not surprisingly finished first and second in the competition. Heroic bravery from Rauiri demonstrated what faith he has in Jo. Jasper tackled everything but did not like doing things slowly and Bryony was noticeably unsound in the trot up due to an earlier incident. Heston was truly amazed by it all but turned out to be pretty brave when he got over the shock. In fact , he managed an excellent piece of freestyle ( no lead rope ) as a finale. The two youngsters, Star and Miffy settled in well and did everything that was asked of them.
It wasn't all hard work, we had a lovely picnic in the shade of a big tree.
For those who missed out on all the fun. Sheila runs courses every couple of months including Spook busting mornings. She also deals with all manner of behavioural issues and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org