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There’s a whole lot more to riding than just getting on your horse and seeing how flawlessly you can sit, how perfect your horse can be on the bit, and how well he can perform at the walk, trot and canter. There is a depth of relationship that has drawn humans to the love of horses throughout the centuries, a mythic love that we celebrate in story and in art.

Horses are far more aware than humans. Horses are aware of their surroundings, their environment, their spatial relation to one another, their inner emotional state, their outer physical state, etc. Everything you do with the horse matters to him – therefore it should matter to you too. Every motion with your body, every time you notice (or fail to notice) his body language or gestures, you are sending and receiving a message. Just because you weren’t aware of “communicating” something, doesn’t mean that your horse wasn’t aware of “communication” from you.

What you say to your horse, and how you listen to your horse is in your control, if you are aware that your actions, responses and reactions are always sending a message, you are on your way to becoming a better horseman.

Awareness is a necessary skill when working with horses and when we become more aware, we notice an increased willingness and ability to perform in the horses. When we become more aware of how our riding position, influence, and reactions affect a horse’s balance and responses, the horse not only benefits, but a deeper rapport grows between horse and rider.

Awareness is the state or ability to perceive, to feel, or to be conscious of events, objects, or sensory patterns. In biological psychology, awareness is defined as a human’s or an animal’s perception and cognitive reaction to a condition or event.

May the dance improve with your level of awareness…