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Author: Lynn Reardon Page 2 of 3

Horse Wise Creates Special Prize for 4-H Youth

I’m excited to announce the launch of the HorseWise® Horsemanship Buckle for 4-H Youth Groups!

The Horse Wise Horsemanship Buckle will reward junior equestrians for learning good ground work techniques, becoming more aware of their horses’ physical signals and understanding how to prepare their horse for performance work.

It also gives participants with green or less experienced horses an opportunity to win a buckle (while giving their horse more training during the show season).

Best of all, it’s FUN – and encourages camaraderie, sportsmanship and good horsemanship!

Goal Setting in Spring 2020: Part III of III

So if you’ve read the last two posts, you now have a 90-day goal for your riding and horsemanship. You might be wondering what to do next, given this whole inconvenient pandemic at the moment.

First, write that 90-day goal down at the top of the page. Let’s say your goal is to do smooth canter departs on both leads with your young, excitable and very green horse.

You have 90 days – or 3 months – or 12 weeks to accomplish that goal. Write down the numbers 1, 2 and 3 on a vertical line on the page under your goal. Each number represents one month. Write down what you would need to accomplish by the end of each month in order to reach your goal at 90 days.

Goal Setting in Spring 2020: Part II of III

Photo deliberately chosen with sole aim of making you smile.

So if you read the previous post, hopefully you’ve come up with a goal for your riding and horsemanship. One that you love and are super excited about. Maybe it’s the Olympics. Or maybe it’s being able to quietly w-t-c on trail rides with your sometimes nervous young horse. Or to compete in a team sorting competition. Whatever the goal — here’s the next step on reaching it.

Look at that goal and decided on a reasonable time frame for it. Is it the Olympics? Your deadline for that will probably be 2024 (unless you are 12, in which case you could pick a much later deadline lol). Quiet w-t-c on trails with skittish young horse? Maybe one year is a good deadline.
Ok — so now you have a deadline.

Goal Setting in Spring 2020: Part I of III

A fun strategy for right now is to set a 90-day goal. Make sure it’s one that you find genuinely exciting — and that fits in your overall horse plans for the future. What are the things that you always wished you had time to study or learn or get better at? Because what’s good about now is that we ALL have lots more time on our hands. And we have the luxury of slowing down. So many big gains in performance come from slowing down to get things right first.

Not sure what to pick as a goal? Try this exercise. Sit down and write out ALL your goals related to horses and riding. Every single one. Even the one about riding in the Olympics or the Calgary Stampede. Put them all on paper. Then read them over and pick the three that excite you the most. Don’t worry about the current weird spring break — just pick those three.

Simple Goals for 2020

“In all the things, the supreme excellence is simplicity.”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“The secret in riding is to do only a few things but to do them right.”

Nuno Oliveira

What is the key to simplicity? Awareness.

Simplicity and awareness go hand in hand. You get to the essentials, the only things that matter. There is a confidence in that. For you and your horse.

If you are aware, you can see the heart of the matter. The foundation becomes clear.

Just like in a house. You could look at a house and see many things. The porch design. The décor. The color of the shutters. The size of the bathrooms.

Thankful for Horses

“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”

Gilbert C. Chesterton

For me, Thanksgiving is the holiday of food, fellowship and good cheer. It’s a day where I give myself full permission to sit back and enjoy the things I love the most. When I had a full-time office career (back in my Washington DC days), Thanksgiving meant a day with my horses. Back then, a trip to the boarding barn meant a two-hour round trip (often longer, thanks to DC traffic). To fly down empty roads on a weekday was a rare treat.

Things have changed since then. My commute is a five-minute walk to my own barn. Horses fill my days. They are my office now. My job is all about working with horses, helping horses and taking care of horses. But they are still in my life entirely for my pleasure – for my learning and delight.

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