Click the logo to go the International Horsemanship Association or IHA website.
In my years of competitive riding and training, I learned many things including how to make a horse run away with you. After mastering this, I had numerous experiences in which the trainer told me that I needed to try a different bit. I eventually had an entire closet full of bits, and not one of them "FIXED" my horse. During one particular lesson, the instructor said, "The more bit the less knowledge the rider has."
which was an immense ego blow, but exactly what I needed to hear. After recovering a little, I asked the instructor how I should stop my horse from running away with me if a bigger bit was not the answer. He had no specific answer, but told me, "I am sure that you can ride as fast a he can run."
I later realized that the struggles that I was going through were due to a lack of communication.
I am grateful to the recent "Natural Horsemanship" movement. Relationship Based Horsemanship is the future. Really taking the time to learn how horses communicate will fast forward your progress. All good horse-man teams, no matter the discipline, have the same basic foundation of good communication. Once you have developed a language, you can both understand, you and your horse can play any game you want, whether it is a competitive sport, or trail riding.
If you are brave enough to "Take the time it takes, so it takes less time.." you will enjoy every moment of the journey! "Listen" to your horse by learning his language!