A Fresian’s Journey on the Path Excerpts from Session III

There is a lot of video footage that comes before the work taped in this session, which you can find

and I am still editing and uploading. If you take a peek at the above video, you can see it is complicated work for the horse, and it may seem like very little progress is happening. In the previous sessions, we worked on softening the four quarters of the horse through yielding exercises. The work in session two is asking the horse to use his body as one orchestrated whole… subtle pressure is put on the hind and forequarters at once, and the horse is being asked to move straight forward without bracing on any of the quarters. You can see that he tends to “waddle” side to side trying to get it right, before he realizes his head has to REACH forward to move forward softly.  Every so SLOWLY, and with subtle cues, the horse learns that this work has something to do with softening in the neck and poll – something to do with whole body movement THROUGH THE BACK AND UP AND DOWN THE NECK AND POLL… and ever so slowly, the walk becomes lengthened, the neck lowers, and the movement becomes soft. THIS IS VERY HARD WORK TO CUE AND VERY HARD WORK FOR THE BRACING HORSE!

Two weeks later, you can see marvelous results in this horse.

First he allows me to help relaz, release, and soften his neck — as he has learned HAPPILY that the work has something good to do for his neck and poll. Here is the warm-up work

We move right into soft circles through the “pentagon of bamboo poles” that I have laid out as visual cues. In subsequent video you will see how the “pentagon” helps the horse point his nose out and down into the circle, making his movement soft and whole through the whole body.

Today is my last session with this boy for a while. I have to have surgery, and am taking a break from life. I will be working on trying to get the video into some kind of format for educational use. But I wanted to get some recent video of him out for you all to enjoy.

Thanks for keeping posted.

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