Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Making it a Game
It's only taken 9 years, 3 horses, 13 clinics/workshops, 2 trips to the ISC, taking countless lessons, auditing numerous clinics and thousands of dollars to figure this out.
Yeah, I can be slow.
Here is my realization: You cannot avoid something that was never coming in the first place.
Let me translate that into Parelli-speak: If I never intend to offer my horse a phase 4 then she cannot play the "ha, ha you missed" me game because you cannot avoid something that was never coming in the first place.
If you do not intend to go to phase 4, your horse cannot make a game out of moving first.
I finally get it.
I noticed a huge change in Cricket after camp. I started thinking about phase 4 before offering phase 1. I got very focused on phase 4 as I offered phase 1, 2 and 3. And Cricket started offering more at lighter and lighter phases.
Sure, my intention and focus was better but the promise of phase 4 was now real.
And my phase 4 is not a "whack her, beat her, how hard can I hit her with the popper" kind of phase 4. It was about delivering a kiss to the tip of the hair with a smile on my face.
The last time I played with Cricket, she offered me a soft, true canter at phase 1. She offered me a soft flying lead change at phase 1 and she finally hooked onto my idea of cantering circles and settled into a beautiful forward canter. It truly was a game.