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Training Rewards that Work

Show season is looming, the clippers are oiled, you’ve got new training goals for your horse and you’re ready to hit the schooling ring. Before you begin where you left off last fall, give some thought to your training routine and how you reward your horse under saddle to ensure your training is most effective. As humans, we see the world largely from our own perspective. When the rewards we’ve come to rely on miss the equine benchmark, you and your horse may become frustrated, leading you to incorrectly assume that your horse is missing the point. But if your horse seems edgy or the behaviour you are training doesn’t occur more reliably as a result of your rewards, it may be time to change your training routine and find rewards your horse thinks are relevant. The field of equitation science has provided us with insight into when and how…

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