Do you remember how complicated it was learning about horse steps, strides, paces and gaits?
Just when you thought that horses could walk, run and gallop you learned that when horses ran it was called trot and somewhere in there was canter. Great, now you know the four natural gaits of the horse, or are they called paces?
So you consult your trusty horse book only to find that horses have… wait a sec, the other trusty horse book said there were four natural paces of the horse and now this one has included stepping backwards.
You read a little more and find that a horse has steps in the walk and trot and strides in the canter and gallop. Is that right? In human terms a step is putting one foot in front of the other and a stride is a longer decisive step. Yet the stride in horse terms is a single coordinated movement of all four legs.
What do you do when horse books contradict each other?
Talk to horse people from different areas or different countries and they will always have different meanings for the same or similar words or the same meaning for different words.
If you are confused about halters and head-collars, coronets and coronary bands as well as competition rules in different equine disciplines then think about the many instructions that are given when learning to ride.
Once you have the basics on confidence, balance and control then think about the ways there are to continue to improve your ability and your relationship with your horse.
Although there are many variations even within the English language of how to ride, handle and care for horses and countless variations when you consider other languages spoken, there is one thing that doesn’t change amongst real horse people though… “the fundamental desire to improve the quality of the relationship between human ad horse”.
When some-one uses terminology that you don’t agree with or uses a different training method to one you would normally use, have a look to see what they are in the process of achieving.
If they are achieving a better relationship with their horse, challenge yourself to see if you can use their methods to achieve the same or better result.