NH type human starting question, where there is no trainer version
I couldn't search up with a thread for this exact question and we've been discussing various people over the last few months, so here goes. Hopefully we can avoid a trainwreck, please.
This is another one of my 'It's best to work with a trainer but I live Where There Is No Trainer' questions. I was taught very basic horse handling and groundwork skills way back when. It was based on the "reward for obedience, scaled discipline for disobedience" approach. It really didn’t teach the good horse reading, equine psychology, and pressure-release training skills that the approach sometimes called “Natural Horsemanship” has done a good job of spelling out.
On vacation/ trimming training I got a good look at that ‘NH’ type of horse handling and there are definitely tools there I should have in my toolbox. Pepo pony and company might phrase it as ‘learning Horse as a Second Language’ or ‘Human Starting’. Clinicians might call these class sections ‘basic groundwork’ or ‘colt starting’?
There isn’t anyone available here who can be a hands-on trainer so I’ll have to resort to DVD’s to get a clue or at least buy a vowel. Among all the clinicians/ others with DVD series whom we have discussed on COTH, what would be the best series to get if you can’t go over the DVDs and your own groundwork with a hands-on trainer? I have some ideas but would like to hear suggestions before I mention them.
I am not really sure what he put out for a "series," because he is kind of before the super-slick marketing so many NH people have now...but my vote would be Ray Hunt. I just did a quick Google and only looked at one site but I didn't check Amazon, HorseBooks, or any Western tack stores. I think that was Ray's own web site and the most obvious how-to DVD I saw was colt-starting, but that might not be what you want. I'm pretty sure there are others, though. Good luck! I can truly sympathize with your situation. Even though I am on the east coast of the US, I'm about three hours away from most trainers and I don't have a trailer, so I might as well be on the dark side of the moon.
You might try True Horsemanship Through Feel, a book written by Leslie Desmond in conjunction with Tom Dorrance. It has an excellent write up of a step-by-step way to get a horse to lead.
I think Leslie Desmond has some DVDs, but I don't know much about them.
The book is excellent because she just wrote down what Tom said. I haven't seen her DVDs, but I have seen her work with more than one horse and it is incredible to know that she spent more than 5 minutes with Mr. Dorrance. My advice is to steer clear of Leslie herself.
Buck's "From the Ground Up" (I have the VHS, but it must be on DVD by now). There is also one called simply "Groundwork". Or anything done by Ray Hunt, Joe Wolter, Bryan Neubert...