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Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance

January 23, 2011

Endurance Blurbs: Preparing the Endurance Horse (a mental perspective)

This has to be one of the most insightful articles I've read in a long time.  Using your LD's, really using them as a training tool rather than as an end goal of just completing.  Building the horse, and shaping the horse's mind first, body second.  Love, love! this article.

A fun short 100 mile rider interview, so if you want to hear what these riders have to goes.


  1. Oooooh, another one I don't like! (I love it when you post links I disagree with - most of the time I skim your links, go "yep sounds good", and have nothing to say in your comments.)

    re: The Hought link
    There are some horses who get more amped if you let them "run it out." They might do better if you back up, slow down, start over, like the article is indicating. But some horses need to move to be able to stand still. I've discovered this with Dixie, and I've read it in a lot of TB blogs. If she spazzes for some reason and I try to slow her down to get her attention back on me, it spirals into a horrible fight. If she spazzes and I let her speed up, just for a few strides, then I ask her to come back to me, things go much better. I don't let her "run it out of her system" - I just let her flee for a couple seconds, then ask her to come back to earth.

    I also have a totally different tack on self-confidence. I let Dixie stumble. I let her stumble a lot (admittedly, only at the walk or trot). I want her to learn to use her brain and watch where she's going. Now when she sees rocks, she slows down, drops her head way down, and picks her way through them. I think that's actual self-confidence. If I were making her dodge rocks or slow down, she'd have confidence that I know what's right for her - but honestly, I don't. Especially at night. I want her to watch the footing!

  2. Yeah, Phebes gets more amped to put it mildly. I won't even consider a canter with her unless we are completely alone or paired up with a non-dominent horse (behind) us.

    I'm OCD about where she puts her feet, and honestly she isn't the brightest bulb when it comes to tree roots. She is pretty good about spotting holes and such.

    I haven't tried night riding yet. Not sure that I can with my balance disorder, which means even if I manage the 50, I won't EVER go any further. Not sure I want to anyway. At this point in our adventure I'll be happy to learn to do 25's and 30's and eliminate the "B" scores on muscle tone.

    We all have to do what works for each of us. It is definitely not one size fits all.

  3. a p.s.

    Phebes stumbled on a tree root at the extended trot, dropped her shoulder, and I did a somersault off onto the trail our first LD. I really watch roots now days....I had me a whopper headache after that one.