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Nature, Nurture and Horses: A Journal of Four Dressage Horses in Training-From Birth through the First Year of Training Hardcover – May 18 2012
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“This book takes a look at the day-to-day life with horses and the work that goes into them .... [A] valuable read for riders of any discipline.” —Jennifer Roberts, Equine Journal
About the Author
proponent of classical equestrian ideals. Belasik has ridden and trained at every level in dressage, from young horses to beyond Grand Prix. He also has had extensive experience in eventing, which encompassed the early part of his career, before turning solely to his first and true love of classical
dressage and the art of riding. Belasik has sought wisdom from great riding masters such as Dr. HLM van Schaik and Nuno Oliveira, and his wide-ranging studies include the concepts of Zen Buddhism and martial arts. Belasik has authored seven books, and he gives clinics, lectures, and demonstrations internationally, while training a wide cross section of clients at his Pennsylvania Riding Academy at
Lost Hollow Farm (www.paulbelasik.com).
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The is a particularly relevant production for me at this time since I am in the process of buying my first PRE Andalusian who I met on the day of her birth. I am already analyzing each of the for foals highlighted in this book toward how they behave as a newborn as to what they become as an adult horse. At first, I was disappointed that more was not said as to the foals heritage and birth size but I quickly decided that the authors intent was to focus on purely on behavior-both hereditary and learned rather than sell a breed or suggest any influence from size. At all times, the subtle progress is kept as close to what nature defines as possible. I say this even though aids such as side reins are used because at no time are their harsh influences. Aids are applied in a supportive way which will ultimately support future evolution between the horse and its human partner.
This book follows four horse -three fillies and one stud colt- through their early, formative years- from birth to quite pleasant mounts. Their progress and the supportive techniques are followed throughout the erly life. I think that the key point is that the foal is unique and each one must have his or her own training program while still observing the goal of producing a sound partner for the experience of classical training.
In a sense, this work is a continuum from "Lost Quixote" in that natural dominance and leadership within the herd are considered while training. I have witnessed such with my own limited experience as a trainer. Just today, I applied this philosophy in an approach to helping my Haflinger mare get over a fear or wish not to do something. She is a leader in her group and I allowed for the fact that she was having difficulty giving decision making to me. From this, I took a sit and wait approach which allowed her to see the wisdom of what I was trying to guide her through.
There is a great deal of beauty to this approach to bringing a horse along. One who can do this is almost guaranteed to have an easy partner. Equestrians from any discipline -Western, English-can benefit from this classical approach. The horse is permitted to evolve into its role rather than having its spirit forced into compliance.
So very unfortunate that all horses cannot enjoy such guidance!