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About the Equines At Liberty & Horse Agility Forum - Plus, Hello & Introduce yourselves!

Horse Agility Equine clicker training Positive Reinforcement Natural Horsemanship Liberty work

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#1 Equine Tourism

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Posted 23 February 2011 - 09:47 PM

Welcome to the Horse Agility Forum & Equines at Liberty!
This dedicated Equines at Liberty & Horse Agility forum has been created for enthusiasts of liberty work with horses, both on the ground and ridden, and positive, trust-based methods of horsemanship - from across the world! :smile:

We will be bringing you regular news, updates, articles and info about horses working at liberty, liberty sports and Horse Agility. We welcome your discussion, chat, thoughts and input into the forum. This is a forum for everyone involved and interested in working with horses at liberty and in Horse Agility - enthusiasts, competitors, trainers, centres, venues and spectators!

Please also feel free to post your Equines at Liberty and Horse Agility pictures and videos.

Equine Tourism promotes equestrian activities, horse and pony breeds and good horsemanship.

You can find us on Twitter @EquineTourismUK @EquinetourismUS @EquinetourismAU @EquinetourismEU
also @EquusAtLiberty

And on facebook www.facebook.com/EquineTourism

#2 Alice Purvis

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Posted 16 March 2011 - 02:46 PM

Hi Dawn,

I would very much like to know if you will be holding another Horse Agility thing at yours as I didn't know about the last one and would love to come and watch and maybe even have a go? I will join the club. Please could you let me know? Many thanks. Alice.

#3 Dawn Westcott

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Posted 16 March 2011 - 03:44 PM

Hi Alice - really good to see you on here! One of the reasons this community has been launched is to help people spread the word about their equestrian events and activities and it will hopefully make it easier for you and others to find out what's going on!

I hope you'll also share some information about your own work with your horses on here as I'm sure people will be really interested to hear about it . Are you going to the Rodrigo clinic in April? :smile:
"Two professors are walking towards each other along a narrow path. One professor stands firm and says 'I never make way for fools.' The other professor stands aside and says, 'I always make way for fools.' "

#4 Equine Tourism

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Posted 17 March 2011 - 03:29 PM

Hello There!

Welcome to the Equine Tourism Horse Agility & Equines at Liberty Community - Please introduce yourself!

Equinetourism.co.uk wholeheartedly supports and promotes Horse Agility because, at the heart of this sport, there is a strong foundation of Good Horsemanship. Handlers are encouraged to use positive, trust-based methods of horsemanship, where the horse is treated as a partner rather than an object. No sticks, pulling or shouting are allowed, and trust and confidence develops in even the spookiest horse. From this acorn an oak tree can grow - and at the end of the day - the handler and horse have transformed into a quiet, calm, confident team, who have both achieved more than they would ever have thought possible.

Horse Agility puts people on the road to true understanding and partnership with their horses. And this continues into ridden work, when suddenly - the horse that spooked at just about everything, is now able to contemplate flapping plastic bin liners, unexpected brightly coloured objects and even big traffic, with more contemplation, confidence and self-control. The groundwork also frees up the physical and mental tensions, blockages and 'issues' that can manifest themselves into ridden problems - so the sport has an all round benefit for horsemanship.

So this is why Equinetourism.co.uk is delighted to offer Horse Agility enthusiasts a Community to meet, discuss, explore and celebrate this new sport.

Welcome to everyone - and we look forward to hearing all about you, your horses and your involvement in Horse Agility! Please introduce yourself... :smile:

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#5 Vanessa


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Posted 17 March 2011 - 05:12 PM

Hello Everyone,
My name is Vanessa Bee and I was fortunate enough to think of The Horse Agility Club!
I must confess it has taken over my life, in a nice way, and I have met so many wonderful people and horses through it.

Yesterday I went to meet Robyn Hood and Sarah Fisher of TTOUCH and TTEAM (the Linda Tellington Jones method of interacting with horses) and what a fabulous day we had they are very keen to be involved with THe Horse Agility Club which is great news. Today I had a phone call from a Swedish Horse Agility Club who want to join the International Club it just goes on and on. I never know from one moment to the next where the next communication will come from.

What is SO exciting for me is the positive effect it's having on the horses as well as the people I knew when i started it this would be powerful stuff but this is a really 'deep magic'. Even if you don't want to join a Club please do look at the website (www.thehorseagilityclub.com) on the How to get Started page there's lots of free advice and the equipment page gives you ideas on what you might need to get started. THe OLHA! (On Line Horse Agility competition) is on there too with plans of the current month's course, photographs of the obstacles you need to build (they are very simple) and video of me doing it with my horses. All free and available for anyone to play around with.

This is about relaxing with your horse so there are only two rules Be Safe and Have Fun!
If you have any questions please ASK!!

#6 Les Kiger

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 03:45 PM

I'd like to start with a couple of thanks:
Dawn, thank you for creating this community where we can all come together from so many different locations and backgrounds to share the joy and knowledge we have gained from our horsemanship!
Vanessa, as you say, we've many of us been doing Agility for years. However, it took a great vision and some real hutzpah to create the international phenomenon that is now Horse Agility. Thanks for giving us a flag to rally around!

I'm an artist, author, and horsemanship coach from Central Oregon, USA. I share my journey to create joy through horsemanship and help others on similar paths at Equuality. I pursue horsemanship as an medium of artistic expression, which makes me an EQxpressionist, building on my foundation as a university trained painter. I teach families and kids to be horse whisperers as one of the co-founders of PonyPros. I'm helping to change the face of equestrian competition as a Horse Agility Accredited Trainer. I practice and teach Yoga for every body(and mind) as a Registered Yoga Teacher. I am certified in the use of TAGTeach for crafting fun, meaningful learning situations.

All that is a long way of saying this: I love horses, I love people, I love life, and I try to make art with everything I do. I'm so keen on Agility because it gives me somewhere to bring all of these facets together.

My partner Koa is a 6-7 year old mustang mare. She's feisty, fun, and always keeps me on my toes and honest about my horsemanship. I'm lucky to have such an amazing teacher and partner. I fell in love with Koa at first sight on the first day of the year of service Kali(my wife) and I donated to creating a volunteer training program at a large multi-breed rescue. While she was likely bred in captivity (she has no freeze brand), she is clearly descended from the Kiger mustangs of Eastern Oregon. If you'd like to read more about how Koa and I became partners, check out the essay Practice from my book Equuality: Reflactions on Life with Horses.

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Create a Joyful Life with Horsemanship

#7 apricot


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Posted 25 March 2011 - 09:28 PM

Hi, I am Jo, a big horse agility fan. Before Vanessa created agility as a competition I used similar courses with my youngsters to kind of spook bust. I use clicker training to teach my lot and really enjoy watching the horses work out puzzles that I create for them. When the light bulb comes on you can really see the joy in their faces knowing that they are going to be rewarded for their efforts.
I have eight horses for my sins atm. Theo my 14yr old trek horse, he is a liverchestnut welsh cob gelding., Punka my traditional 3yr old skewbald cob gelding who loves agility and has the most increadible personality. Storm is a 4yr old section c welsh pony of cob type. He has a real food obsession, he is very protective over his grub and you would think clicker wouldn't be good to use for him but I think it actually helps. Ruby, my welsh x tb mare, 7yr old who has a lovely personality, brought on slowly and is coming on well. Tamagin is my very troubled 5 yr old exmoor who has taught me so much and the reason I found clicker training in the first place. Mickey, Pablo and Puzzle are colts that I bought as weanings last year that I intend to bring up using as much positive reinforcement as possible. So far I am happy with their progress. I will try and sort pics at some point. Just wanted to say hello.:rolleyes:

#8 Dawn Westcott

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Posted 29 March 2011 - 09:43 PM

Welcome to the ET Community Jo! Very impressed with your HA demos and work so far. And also very interested to hear more about all of your horses and ponies, especially your Exmoor.
"Two professors are walking towards each other along a narrow path. One professor stands firm and says 'I never make way for fools.' The other professor stands aside and says, 'I always make way for fools.' "

#9 Brenda K

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Posted 05 April 2011 - 06:58 PM


My name is Brenda and my horse partner is a Morgan mare called Highland Park or High for short. She has had three stages to her life. The first we don't know much about:: she was ridden by a young lad. The second was as a dressage horse and it was as such we bought her. My daughter competed with her and although they "did very well", we never really felt we understood her as well as we did our two geldings - nor as well as we would like. At times she obviously felt she needed to shout at us as we weren't getting the message - and this lead to some very hairy moments! Our need to understand her better lead us to Natural Horsemanship and then to Horse Agility.

High is now seventeen and has one or two physical problems. I too am no spring chicken and can say the same about the physical problems! HA is a wonderful way of keeping us both thinking and progressing, and has become a big part of the third stage of her life. We had already started playing with obstacles and I discovered just how much my little horse responds to joy and enthusiasm, but my imagination was obviously a bit limited! The club has opened up new vistas for us and introduced us to some lovely and inspiring people.

There are many aspects of Horse Agility and the Club that I love. The fact that in competition good horsemanship is rewarded seems to me quite radical and powerful as this blurs the edges between training, competition and building a relationship with your horse in a very healthy way. I like the fact that you can't bully your horse round a course and get good marks! I think this will protect the sport from becoming another stick to beat our horses with. And of course, we can get positive feedback through our horsemanship marks even when an obstacle is still pretty tricky for us. I also like the emphasis on working towards liberty - and boy, does liberty work give our horses a chance to give us feedback!

So here's to Vanessa for getting the club off the ground in a big way!

#10 blackjack


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Posted 06 April 2011 - 12:20 PM

Hello all,
I just received an email from Vanessa about this place and thought I would come on over and introduce myself.
My name is Sue.I live on the edge of Exmoor with my OH and our little gang of pets. We are down to one cat now, a couple of guinea pigs, and the ponies. I have a Fell pony called Jack, he is 11 years old and built like a brick outhouse. His companion is Yoshi, he is a Dartmoor Hill Pony, seven years old, and he's on loan to me from the Mare and Foal Sanctuary. You can read about him here where there are also some extremely cute pics of him from when he was tiny.
I just started doing a bit of horse agility with Yoshi and we enetered the March competition. I realise from looking at the winning films that we have a long way to go but my goodness we are having fun! It's so good to have something to do with Yoshi that he enjoys so much.
I'm off to have a look at the rest of this board now, nice to find somewhere to talk about HA.

#11 Equine Tourism

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Posted 06 April 2011 - 05:14 PM

Hello Brenda and Sue and welcome to the HA Community. Horse Agility is attracting some of the nicest people! :) Brenda, you've highlighted some really poignant reasons why HA is so valuable in developing a good relationship with your horse. The fun thing about getting involved with the HA Club at the start is that we are all learning the ropes together.

You're welcome to create photo albums in the Photo Gallery, and you can then click on the 'Image Link' code next to the picture and paste it into your forum threads.

#12 Wendy


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Posted 07 April 2011 - 02:28 PM

Hello, I'm Wendy from Kent

I discovered Horse Agility last week via Primrose Hill on Facebook. I am now absolutely in love with the idea and can't wait to get started at it!

Time, finances (and a non horsey family) don't allow me to own a horse of my own, but over the years I have been fortunate enough to help a couple of owners look after their horses. At the moment I help a lady who owns 3 horses. The original plan was always that I share her 16 year old 16.2hh bay thoroughbred cross. He's lovely to ride, but does spook at the silliest of things. Apart from him she has a yearling Appaloosa that she has big plans for and a 3year old rescue pony who was found wandering by Kent police at the Dartford crossing. He's a typical skewbald cob gypsy pony. I adore him!! He was named Aladdin, his hooves were badly curled up when he came to her a year ago and he was full of worms. Now he's in lovely condition, healthy and happy.

Discovering Horse Agility was a bit of a light bulb moment for me. I've always felt I'm really good with young horses, teaching them to work a little in hand, nothing big, just obedient catching and leading. When asked, I would immediately say I love riding, and I do! But I'm just as happy, if not more so, when working with horses and ponies in hand. So I have big plans for Aladdin! I'm getting together some bits and bobs to make obstacles and really looking forward to entering him in an OLHA competition one month soon, (don't think we will quite make April's).

I've been reading through Vanessa Bee's website and I love the whole idea of perfect horsemanship, I feel really inspired and am looking forward to having something for Aladdin and I to work towards.

I've added at the top that I'm in Kent, I'd love to hear from others who are near me.

#13 Equine Tourism

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 08:05 PM

Wendy, welcome to the HA Community - sounds like a lovely combination of horses and ponies! HA is like a breath of fresh air with its positive, trust-based approach and friendly crowd. We look forward to hearing your progress! :)

#14 Shelley


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Posted 19 April 2011 - 12:19 PM

Hi, my name is Shelley and I live in the beautiful hills of Perthshire Scotland. My husband and I have 5 horses, 4 workable and 1 companion and they live on 7 acres of hill with it's own stream at the top which keeps them fit. I am a Freelance Horsemanship Instructor (www.horsesavvy.co.uk) and was very eager to try out HA and was so chuffed when Ann at Easterton Farm, Auchterarder became a HAAT and started us on the pathway for events. I also compete with the OLHA and am very pleased with winning the first two events with my special boy Solly.

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Solly also has his own blog (our other horses pinch the spotlight now and then on this) and I regularly update this with what we're working on with play, riding, HA, logging and other fun things we find to do here. His blog is: www.sollysjourney.blogspot.com

Am thoroughly enjoying the HA events on line and in person so far, it's fun, it challenges your horsemanship and the partnership you have with your horse and also nice to be around other like minded people ;-)

Shelley & Solly

'Horses ALWAYS remember the GOOD stuff' SNC '11

#15 Amber Lee

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Posted 30 April 2011 - 11:27 PM

Hi all,

I'm Amber from Texas, and I'm eager to get started in Horse Agility. I currently have 3 horses, 2 of which are retired seniors. They've been pasture ornaments for 10 years or so, and I was looking for something non-ridden to do with them to give them something interesting to do, to keep their minds working and give them (and me) some fun exercise too. One is a 25 year old Quarter horse who used to team pen before I got him. We used to have a lot of fun trail riding, taking lessons, and going to playdays, but he had an early retirement due to my college, work, and other life events. His companion is a Shetland/mini cross who was kept as a stud before I got him. I had big plans of driving him some day but never got around to it. I love the idea of Horse Agility, training and competing from home via OHLA, and learning to communicate with my horse pals in a new way. I think it'll be a great way to get my confidence with horses back too, from a place of better understanding. Hopefully I can transfer the things (and confidence!) I learn doing HA to my interactions with my riding horse, who is kind and willing but tends to be on the spooky side!

Looking forward to learning from others! Thanks for such a neat new sport!

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Horse Agility, Equine clicker training, Positive Reinforcement, Natural Horsemanship, Liberty work

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