Liberty Connection Training: How To Improve The Relationship With Your Horse

The Horsefulness Liberty Connection Training program consists of 8 basic exercises.  I call them the 8 Connection exercises, because the most important goal of these exercises is to develop a strong bond with your horse and spark a deep connection. By doing the exercises, your herd of two becomes solid and strongLiberty Connection Training is the perfect preparation for any future training you will do with your horse.

The foundation

Just like a house needs a strong foundation, so does your relationship with your horse! This foundation is built during Liberty. In my opinion, Liberty Connection Training is the foundation of everything you will do with your horse. Because how can you train a horse that walks away from you when it’s free? This horse is actually telling you it doesn’t really want to be with you…

Training a horse that doesn’t want to be with you at all, let alone do something with or for you, is actually very disrespectful towards the horse. Essentially, you are forcing the horse to be with you, with no regard for your horse’s enjoyment or satisfaction. 

Or how can you train a horse that doesn’t show respect for your personal space? There’s a big chance that this horse will push or kick you during training and literally will take your place.

And how can you train a horse that does not feel safe with you yet? This horse will be tense and incapable of learning anything. A horse that does not feel safe with you will be hard to lead, in any exercise.

The truth …

Liberty Connection Training is not only for horses just beginning their training. Even when you have gone through all the at-liberty connection exercises with your horse and have started with groundworklunging, and/or riding, these exercises are a good way to know how much the bond with your horse has strengthened (or not) through your training. 

A horse that always walks away from you as fast as it can as soon as you remove the rope or reins and that doesn’t want to come near to you afterward… well, that horse speaks the truth. Of course, it’s important to look for the reason why your horse wants to get away from you after training and to do something about it?

Together with changing your training methods, the 8 connection exercises will help you to reconnect and strengthen the relationship you have with your horse.


The goal of the exercises from Horsefulness Liberty Connection Training is:

  • To develop a clear 2-way communication
  • To get to know you horse 
  • To develop a deep connection with your horse, but also
  • To maintain this bond or
  • To rebuild and re-establish this bond
  • To solve relationship problems like lack of trust, dominance issues, not liking to be with you, …
  • To help the horse overcome certain traumatic experiences 
  • But also to find more peace and calmness in your work with your horse
  • And even to learn how to play with your horse
  • Of course, it will also prepare yourself and your horse for groundwork –> teaching your horse driving aids (Your Spot My Spot, Easy Herding, …) –> teaching your horse the different lead positions ( Easy Herding, Liberty Leading) –> preparing for circlework ( Spontaneous Circling) –> …

All this is again preparation for successful gymnastic groundwork and riding. Can you see how everything builds onto itself and is connected?

The 8 connection exercises are

1. Bonding Time 2. Greet and Go 3. Greet and Groom 4. Your Spot My Spot 5. Easy Herding 6. Liberty Leading 7. Spontaneous Circling 8. The Boomerang