Have you ever heard of the saying, “Built from the ground up.”? Essentially, the same goes for horses. Groundwork is an important aspect of training and working with horses. It can enhance your relationship, communication, and trust between you and your horse. Here are some reasons why groundwork is an important element for any level.
Safety for both horse and rider should always be a priority. Horses are independent thinkers. The more precautionary work you can put in, the better. Desensitizing your horse on the ground is a huge factor in groundwork and handling. Allow your horse to adapt to sounds, unknown objects and specific scenarios from the ground. This will allow for a more controlled and safe horse on the ground and in the saddle.
Manners on the ground and while handling set the tone for demeanor in the saddle. Whether your horse is fully trained or is freshly started, ground manners are equally as important than manners under saddle. Day-to-day handling of your horse is safer and easier with a respectable horse. Standing quiet while tied, giving feet for the farrier, being calm while saddling and so many more are all important manners to have on the ground for any level of horse.
Trust & Communication
Groundwork is a great way to strengthen or create a bond with your horse. Groundwork allows for clear communication. This is why it is easier to create a bond and gain trust with your horse from the ground. Trust and communication gained during groundwork transfers over to work in the saddle. By educating your horse on the ground, you’re introducing the basics that can improve performance and safety in the saddle.
Groundwork is also a great way to get your horse moving and mind thinking. It allows for the horse to exert energy both physically and mentally. Physical and mental challenges keep horses emotionally sound and prevent boredom.
Groundwork is where training begins. It is the foundation for the future of your horse. Horses are attentive and sensitive learners. Teaching them to learn from the ground will allow them to listen, learn and respond in the saddle. Horses, young or old, can learn or re-learn from the ground. Building trust, manners and safe habits on the ground will enhance your ride and training process.
Groundwork can improve your relationship with your horse and lead to safer tendencies in the saddle. Building from the ground up can be a powerful tool with many benefits for both you and your horse. Stay tuned for more ground working tips.