Training here at GHH begins with simply starting with the right horse. If they are not calm, well grounded horses by default, then they're not a part of this program. They MUST start with the right temperament. Horses can be taught and schooled many things, but we passionately believe the horse, at its core and in its DNA, needs to be good natured.
Upon choosing the right horse, then the training can begin. All horses must pass strict requirements and there are no exceptions. Even aspects of training that are seemingly insignificant are addressed. For example, our horses follow you on the lead rope with respect, stop when you stop and walk when you walk. Our horses also stand tied quietly for hours, nobabysitting required. Even catching a loose horse - who wants to spend even 2 minutes trying to catch an evasive horse? So many horses are not taught basic manners. Drives us crazy!! Just like you, we want well trained, mindful, willing equine partners.
On the ground, horses are taught all basic manners and beyond. In addition to respecting your personal space and reading your body language for cues, they are also taught how to side pass, pivot on the forehand and hindquarters. Flexion and softness are also started from the ground. In addition to that, horses are taught ground tying, hobbling, loading and unloading in/out of trailers and how to stand quietly for bathing, brushing, clipping, trimming and de-worming. Young and mature horses are also introduced to crossing obstacles and other 'scary' objects from the ground first in order to gain confidence and trust.
Under saddle, again even the most basic aspects of training are established. For instance, standing still when mounting and then only walking off when given the permission. Mount or unmount from either side. Beyond the basics, is training for a soft and responsive mount that is happy to accommodate your requests. Leg yield, side pass, open and close a gait, drag a log and enjoy smooth, rated gaits.
When horses can execute a variety of commands, no matter how simple or complicated, it truly expands your areas of enjoyment. If you want to ride in the arena one day or out on the trail the next, our horses aren't boxed in to certain procedures. Sort cows one weekend and then go compete in an obstacle course challenge the next. It is so much more enjoyable when your horse is willing and open to new ideas and experiences.
In addition to all that is above, our horses are also exposed to as many different situations and environments as possible such as: ACTHA rides, team sorting / penning, off-site trail rides all around N. TX, horse shows, obstacle course challenges and desensitization clinics.
The goal with each and every horse to create a versatile, peaceful mount. Each horse of course will have their areas in which they shine, but we believe exposing them to different scenarios, riding styles and environments creates a more flexible and open mind. All horses will gain confidence and knowledge so that they are safer and so much more fun to ride!