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Monty Roberts Books

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    Monty Roberts Books

    I read an excerpt from Monty Roberts Book, The Man that Listens to Horses, and I added it to my amazon cart because I wanted to keep reading. I began looking around at his other books and read an excerpt from his ShyBoy book. They were similar, so I wondered...how different are his books, did he add a little to some but keep them all essentially the same?

    Which book, out of all the Monty Roberts books out there is your favorite and why? Is it worth getting and reading more than one?

    #2
    I don't recall having read his other books, but just wanted to plug your local library, which, even if they don't have it locally, may be able to retrieve the book(s) you want via inter-library loan within their network.

    Then you can decide which ones you want in your personal library

    While you're reading in this genre, Mark Rashid also has some good ones.

    --
    Wendy
    ... with Patrick and Henry

    Comment


      #3
      If you do a Google search. He was sued by his family because of his lies.

      He says he learned by watching wild horses. They said this was not true.

      Also it is not true what he said about his childhood.

      I do not like the way he does join up. His way the horse is chased and he uses tiredness. That is not training.

      If you ask on COTH, there are other trainers they seem to like better. Not Monty or Parelli.
      It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.

      Comment

        Original Poster

        #4
        wsmoak I just read the first 30 pages of Rashid's book, Horses Don't Lie, and I added that to my amazon cart as well.. I live rural and don't have a library close by, so buying through amazon has always been a good option... though I'll admit, I hadn't thought of using the library... I'll have to see if the one in town has a copy of these two books. Thanks!!

        As for the Monty lies claim/scandal, I dont think that takes away from the book taken and read at face value, at the very least for the sake of enjoyment.
        Most of the big trainers I can think of (PP, CA, among others) all have horrific things or scandals said about them. Granted I've never practiced nor read their preachings...

        I think one can take ideas from here and there to apply in their own way for their own situation..doesn't mean you have to only drink one trainer's kool-aid and shun/discount the others..
        plenty of ways to go about something.

        I just enjoy reading about people's ideas for living kindly with their horses, communicating effectively and forming a good partnership with their horses.

        Comment


          #5
          Have to plug the Buck Brannaman biography the Faraway Horses. He has had such a challenging life/childhood, and he is absolutely a genius with horses. His colt starting DVD series, 7 clinics, is worth watching a dozen times. Just to see his timing and how the horses respond to it. He is the real deal, not PP or CA. There is no magic carrot stick there, just impeccable reading of the horse.

          For books about training, True Horsemanship Through Feel by Bill Dorrance is very very good.

          Comment


            #6
            Monty Roberts has been very successful with his methods over decades with racehorses at the highest levels of the sport, both nationally and internationally. And with other horses as well. Both starting young horses, and solving problems with mature horses in a gentle fashion. Unlike some of the other publicity trainers, for most of his career his primary business was training numbers of performance horses every year, most of them destined for racing. So his gentle methods were practiced and proven time and again, and passed on to other trainers who worked with him.

            Above all, he was an instrumental voice in that world for changing an old culture that used force and punishment on horses. While his method does use a great deal of physical activity on the part of the horse, and is undoubtedly tiring for the horse in the end, it rarely causes injury and the horse rests and recovers quickly. It is much milder than many of the traditional methods of training that were common when Roberts started as a trainer. And his practices have strong similarities to several other big-name 'natural' style trainers, even if they don't practice his specific 'join-up' steps.

            The family lawsuits were not filed by family members who were closely involved with his program or his life as a child. Their reasons for the lawsuits aren't known. Any public life will always have some people who cause difficulties and even distortions in public perception, it's just part of being well-known in any field.

            Each person who sees this type of negative information about Monty Roberts or any figure with a public presence will have to decide for themselves what they choose to believe. There is some hard evidence supporting Monty's version of his early life, but there won't be CSI-type evidence to prove anything either way.

            Just because someone posts strong statements on social media, pro or con, does NOT make what they say true. I would not give much credibility to absolute statements that don't show any personal connection to what happened in Monty's life.

            For myself, I have drawn my own conclusions from his books and clinics (I attended one of his clinics as a spectator back when he was at his full strength). His approach was a game-changer for me. Very much for the good for me and for my horses. And for every friend with which I shared his story.

            Monty's book, clinics and videos were not only instrumental in changing the way I thought about and practiced horse training, but they were also a strong positive influence on friends who were not horse people, but absorbed their influence about a gentler, more fair way to handle all of the animals in their lives.

            So I have no idea about all the recriminations being hurled Monty's way. I do believe in the great good that Monty accomplished in his life, and his credibility is high with me.

            Comment


              #7
              I have no opinion on his credibility or truthfulness, but I do have at least a couple of his books packed away somewhere. I’m not sure where you are located, but you are welcome to them if there is a reasonable way to pass them off. Feel free to PM me if you’re interested.

              Comment


                #8
                I liked his book, The Man Who Listens to Horses, it was the first NH book I ever read. But I also really, really like Mark Rashid. I think I've got all of his books. I love the way he tells the stories, they really make me think.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by OverandOnward View Post
                  Monty Roberts has been very successful with his methods over decades with racehorses at the highest levels of the sport, both nationally and internationally. And with other horses as well. Both starting young horses, and solving problems with mature horses in a gentle fashion. Unlike some of the other publicity trainers, for most of his career his primary business was training numbers of performance horses every year, most of them destined for racing. So his gentle methods were practiced and proven time and again, and passed on to other trainers who worked with him.

                  Above all, he was an instrumental voice in that world for changing an old culture that used force and punishment on horses. While his method does use a great deal of physical activity on the part of the horse, and is undoubtedly tiring for the horse in the end, it rarely causes injury and the horse rests and recovers quickly. It is much milder than many of the traditional methods of training that were common when Roberts started as a trainer. And his practices have strong similarities to several other big-name 'natural' style trainers, even if they don't practice his specific 'join-up' steps.

                  The family lawsuits were not filed by family members who were closely involved with his program or his life as a child. Their reasons for the lawsuits aren't known. Any public life will always have some people who cause difficulties and even distortions in public perception, it's just part of being well-known in any field.

                  Each person who sees this type of negative information about Monty Roberts or any figure with a public presence will have to decide for themselves what they choose to believe. There is some hard evidence supporting Monty's version of his early life, but there won't be CSI-type evidence to prove anything either way.

                  Just because someone posts strong statements on social media, pro or con, does NOT make what they say true. I would not give much credibility to absolute statements that don't show any personal connection to what happened in Monty's life.

                  For myself, I have drawn my own conclusions from his books and clinics (I attended one of his clinics as a spectator back when he was at his full strength). His approach was a game-changer for me. Very much for the good for me and for my horses. And for every friend with which I shared his story.

                  Monty's book, clinics and videos were not only instrumental in changing the way I thought about and practiced horse training, but they were also a strong positive influence on friends who were not horse people, but absorbed their influence about a gentler, more fair way to handle all of the animals in their lives.

                  So I have no idea about all the recriminations being hurled Monty's way. I do believe in the great good that Monty accomplished in his life, and his credibility is high with me.
                  I got introduced to Monty in the early '90s. On the surface he looks good. But if you watch his early videos where he "validates" his methods they are quite fraudulent. The basis of his approach, the round pen work and the "join up," are used in the world of Spanish horse in the late 18th Century and, in fact, may predate that time by several centuries. He did nothing new; he just introduced into the English speaking world practices used in the Iberian world for a very long time.

                  The notion that all was cruelty and force before Monty is another really big lie. In some cultures and tradition force WAS the primary method of training. But not in all.

                  To get a better view of the historical world he so dramatically argues against I commend to you Conquerors: The Roots of New World Horsemanship by Dr. Deb Bennett. She very specifically addresses these issues and demonstrates the claims of Roberts are bunk. Not the claims that the system works; but rather the claims of invention of the system. And the WAY it's used by Roberts.

                  G.

                  P.S. Get the book here https://www.amazon.com/Conquerors-Ro.../dp/0965853306
                  Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Haters goin' hate

                    OP To answer your question on book similarity, yes. I thought his second book rehashed a lot of the first. I enjoyed The Man That Listens. I'm like you, I like to read or watch videos of lots of trainers. From that I can pick and choose methods that seems to be the best for the horse. The last couple of years I've gotten hooked on Warwick Schiller videos. If I was young again I'd want to train with him (and Laura Graves). Even Craig Cameron has some good training ideas. I watched a video of his on developing the canter. I used it on my trained horse and it was still amazing.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I enjoyed reading the Man Who Listens to Horses.

                      More recently I’ve subscribed to Warwick Schiller’s video site. His new work regarding focus and relaxation is fascinating and effective. I would recommend him as a superior teacher of how to listen to what your horse is saying

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I think Monty made up a lot of the autobiographical periphery (such as how he "roped" and threw a chained convict in a jail cell, his father beating a black man to death, and most of the Hollywood stuff). Can't speak as to his techniques except to say he didn't invent them, just gave a name to something other trainers had been doing long before Monty showed up on the scene.

                        I think he's a whole lot better than Parelli, though!

                        Comment


                          #13
                          If you do eBay, check horse books there, too. There are several book resellers who list up to millions of titles. I've bought many hardcover, originally expensive horse books there for under $5. Just search by title or author, or just type "horse" into the search bar of a big used-book seller--you might find something interesting.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I don't follow MR social media to see everything he or his representatives have ever written or claimed. But of his material that I have seen (mostly the earlier stuff), nowhere did he claim to have 'discovered' or 'invented' his methods. Rather, he discusses at length the horse people that introduced him to and taught these methods, and even says that it was a change for him as well.

                            None of the 'natural' trainers 'invented' what they do. Yes, these are very old principals, and they survived alongside some harsher methods that had become widespread for many decades in this country, particularly in the western regions. I was able to witness an impressive impact on some set old-school minds.

                            People choose how they want to perceive anything, and that's everyone's prerogative.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Yes I think the western horsemanship folk position their "kinder gentler" methods against some worst case bronco version of breaking wild horses fast. Also of course against the casual violence of ignorant backyard owners who lose their tempers.

                              I've always been bemused by the claims to "break a raw mustang in 3 days" or whatever. Who needs to do that anymore these days? Anyone starting young stock can take a couple of months to get a horse going. It's not like we need to add a dozen horses to the remuda before the big round up next week, or whatever.

                              ​​​​​​

                              Comment


                                #16
                                Originally posted by Scribbler View Post
                                Yes I think the western horsemanship folk position their "kinder gentler" methods against some worst case bronco version of breaking wild horses fast. Also of course against the casual violence of ignorant backyard owners who lose their tempers.

                                Remember the "breaking" scene in John Wayne's "The Cowboys?" That is what most folks think of when they think "cowboy training." And to be fair there was some of that. But that won't produce a calm, reliable horse in most instances. So we have to remember that Hollywood epics are entertainments, not documentaries!!!

                                I've always been bemused by the claims to "break a raw mustang in 3 days" or whatever. Who needs to do that anymore these days? Anyone starting young stock can take a couple of months to get a horse going. It's not like we need to add a dozen horses to the remuda before the big round up next week, or whatever.

                                ​​​​​​
                                The WORST equine "entertainment" today is the "Road To The Horse" foolishness where the breaking takes place in hours, not days. And it FILLS arenas with people who'll pay to watch it!

                                The U.S. Army Remount Service by the '20s was purchasing three year old's bred through their program (hundreds of good stallions stood at hundreds of locations around the U.S.). They would be taken in, evaluated, and then placed in training programs. Around the age of five they would be sent to a regiment and usually issued to a longer service trooper for initial training. Once the full training curriculum had been completed the horse might be re-issued to a less experienced trooper (under the theory of "green soldier, experienced horse). The cycle would then repeat. This produced a VERY well trained horse but it was not "natural horsemanship" as is envisioned today. From the first day the horse was treated with an expectation of willing obedience.

                                In peacetime the time from induction to fully trained horse would likely run around four years. In wartime that time would drop sharply as the Army expanded and losses were suffered.

                                I've never looked at it in detail but it would be interesting to look at the British, French, and German equine training programs but pre- and during WWI. I suspect the time to train would be similar, pre-War, to the U.S. Army's program in the Remount Service. And when the shooting started it was seriously compressed.

                                The fundamental trouble with "natural horsemanship" is that it ignores the reality that the horse is a prey animal and the human being is the most successful predator of all time. The most NATURAL thing for a horse to do if a human tries to climb on its back is to do what it would do if a cougar were to do so, i.e.: buck or throw it off and run like HELL!!! That's natural horse behavior. The best humans involved in horse training know this and work to overcome this natural and instinctive behavior by intelligent breeding (selecting the most adaptive equines) and then intelligent training (and we know that Kirkuli the Hittite and Xenophon of Athens were doing this hundreds of years before the birth of Jesus). So all the claims of "newness" and "naturalness" for modern "natural horsemanship" are just a pack of lies.

                                None of the above means you beat horses into submission during the training process. To quote Xenophon, "If a dancer was forced to dance by whip and spikes, he would be no more beautiful." Ditto for a horse. That does NOT mean we don't use whip and spur in the training process. Used as extensions of the human body or to augment human ability or to add precision to the training process they are very useful. They even have their place in disciplining ill behavior. But if you want a graceful obedience you use them intelligently and, probably, minimally. Make your correction, make it effective, and then move on down the road.

                                Roberts, Parelli, and their ilk are sorry specimens of humans. And anyone who tells you that you must "always" or "never" do something or use something is not an example to be followed.

                                G.


                                Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  I read 'the man who listens to horses' and found it interesting in some parts, but not particularly special.
                                  It wasn't a great revelation.
                                  There are things though that many never have the chance to do, like spending hours to watch wild herds. I also found it interesting that he is color blind.

                                  Of course the people who beat their children don't consider it abuse.so I don't give a lot of stock in the 'the family sued him' deal.

                                  the Native American aspect was also very interesting to me.Again, that's something not many people get to experience.

                                  the man has worked at the top level of European racing, and his influence is still there in parts.


                                  The Shy Boy book, I think was a documentation of the taming of Shy Boy. It was a challenge for TV I seem to recall, involved Helicopters and what not. It is less 'system' heavy as a direct line of events. In a revised version, he added an epilogue, where he took the horse back to the range, left the gate open. While the horse went out 'to play' all night, he was back in the morning for breakfast.

                                  those are good books, but by no means the end all to training.

                                  For a really innovative (as of 30 years ago) approach, Linda Tellington-Jones has a very interesting program TEAM and TOUCH (but be careful googeling)

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by BrendaJane View Post
                                    I read 'the man who listens to horses' and found it interesting in some parts, but not particularly special.
                                    It wasn't a great revelation.
                                    There are things though that many never have the chance to do, like spending hours to watch wild herds. I also found it interesting that he is color blind.

                                    Of course the people who beat their children don't consider it abuse.so I don't give a lot of stock in the 'the family sued him' deal.

                                    the Native American aspect was also very interesting to me.Again, that's something not many people get to experience.

                                    the man has worked at the top level of European racing, and his influence is still there in parts.


                                    The Shy Boy book, I think was a documentation of the taming of Shy Boy. It was a challenge for TV I seem to recall, involved Helicopters and what not. It is less 'system' heavy as a direct line of events. In a revised version, he added an epilogue, where he took the horse back to the range, left the gate open. While the horse went out 'to play' all night, he was back in the morning for breakfast.

                                    those are good books, but by no means the end all to training.

                                    For a really innovative (as of 30 years ago) approach, Linda Tellington-Jones has a very interesting program TEAM and TOUCH (but be careful googeling)
                                    Thirty years ago saw the rise of "Far Side Natural Horsemansip" with large numbers of people claiming that they had abandoned "modern" and Classical training methods (which they labeled as "abusive") in favor of a variety of approaches, some valid and some just insane. LTJ was one of more "outer limits" people. She was married to a guy named Wentworth Tellington, a graduate of the last officer class at the U.S. Cavalry School at Ft. Riley. She's a decent hand with a horse but like so many in this period abandoned the "objective" view of horse training espoused by the likes of Xenophon or Alois Podhajsky and adopted the "subjective" approach that characterizes Roberts, Parelli, and Ga-Wa-Ne Pony Boy (among others).

                                    ALL of these people follow the same, well worn path. They reject the Classical methods of places like the Spanish Riding School or the U.S. Cavalry School in favor of some highly emotionally charged attempts to forge a "special" relationship with the horse. They claim, in various ways, that the forging of this "bond" will mean they don't need to create the "sweat equity" that these earlier models required. All you need to do is believe and touch horse in the right place and in the right way and you can take a BLM horse to Olympic Gold without breaking a sweat. That, in my opinion, is just plain fraud.

                                    Read these things if they please you but be aware that time spend in foolish training programs is time you don't have to spend in wise training programs.

                                    G.
                                    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      I have watched him twice.
                                      Extremely not impressed.
                                      He became completely focused on how quickly he could get a person on the horse.
                                      To the point where he had a large clock with the second is ticking hanging above the round pen. It was actually rather disgusting.

                                      There was not really any training going on: the horse was just “flooded”. If you don’t know what flooded means, look up the definition. It has to do with learned helplessness. Don’t waste your time with him, there are far better trainers to educate yourself with.

                                      He is the horse version of an itinerant Bible thumping minister.

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        I am in agreement with Guilherme on the subject of MR and most of the rest of his ilk.
                                        "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

                                        ...just settin' on the Group W bench.

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