An important aspect of natural horse care is how you work them.
It goes without saying that your riding, even when learning, should be sensitive and sympathetic. Horses, as prey animals, are far more sensitive than most people realise. Treating them accordingly will reap its own rewards.
Your aim should be less about using your horse than about partnering with your horse. Try to connect and feel and be at one with your horse. You will both benefit enormously. Check out my Other Resources for natural training
Whichever tack you choose to use, make sure it fits comfortably and allows for free movement. A tight throat-lash will restrict breathing at the faster gaits. An incorrectly fitting saddle will cause pain leading to behavioural issues.
I prefer bitless bridles or the use of halters. A bit is all too often misused which causes great pain to the horse. The mouth is full of nerves. Insensitive hands have been known to break jaw bones.
A bit can compress the tongue, restricting blood flow. In any event, if your riding skills depend on the use of a bit, maybe a change to more sensitive riding would improve your relationship with your horse.
For compelling reasons NOT to use a bit, you may like to check out Robin Cook's research on Other Resources
Few horse people respect a horse or their space. How would we feel if someone walked up to us and put a gadget on our heads, without so much as a greeting? Yet we do this to horses all the time!
Standing outside the horse’s space and waiting for a signal to come closer shows that we respect their space. This may take time to perfect, but time well spent, that your horse will appreciate.
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