Updated: May 19, 2021
Your horse has no idea what your goal is for the ride. They are in the moment. They aren’t planning to be naughty. So if you are struggling with a concept, obstacle, or movement its ok to stop. It’s not “losing”. You don’t have to keep going until you “win”. Don’t create unnecessary battles with your horse. That does not create a confident trusting relationship. When you start feeling like you are battling, stop. Go back to the last thing the horse was doing well. Wait for relaxation to return. Evaluate the communication. Try to determine where the misunderstanding is. Once relaxation occurs you can ask the question again. It’s also ok not to approach the question that caused the problem until a later date. Not creating or continuing the battle will get you much farther in the long run even if it feels like a set back in the short term.