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Liberty Training

liberty training connection with horses Liberty Training with its 8 connection exercises is the foundation of Horsefulness Training.  The goal of Liberty Training is to develop a true connection between human and horse based on how horses interact and communicate within the herd.

During Liberty Training you work with a horse that is set loose in a big riding arena or even in grasslands. You don´t hold the horse but you give it the freedom to leave your side when it feels the need to.

This enables the horse to not feel any form of pressure or force. Because the main goal of Liberty Training is to strongly bond with your horse and for a real connection between you and your horse to arise, and that can only occur when the horse feels free to express himself.

People often train horses too fast without there being any opportunity to really get to know one another or build the foundation for a good relationship. However, when you take your time to work with your horse at liberty, play into your horse’s natural behavior and do all of this in a kind and friendly way, you will really connect and eventually feel the deep bond needed to enjoy pleasant problem free training sessions.

liberty training with ulysseIt is important to convey good intentions, give off a right attitude, empathize with the horse and understand his natural characteristics and behavior. During Liberty Training you take the time to get to know each other.

Horses first need the opportunity to become curious about “their human”. Trust and friendship grows from there. At liberty we also establish hierarchy and develop our leadershipskills.

If the horse notices that you can lead him in a grounded, calm and assertive way his trust in you will grow even more. Liberty Training is a first step to partnership and natural leadership*

* Horsefulness Training uses the term “natural leadership” to emphasize the fact that this method responds to the nature of the horse and it accounts for the natural needs of the horse. For this you need to understand the psychology of the horse and look at everything from the horse’s point of view. That is what makes leadership natural. Methods based on fear and intimidation might succeed in making the horse obey but will not spark trust. However, you are only a leader if the horse follows you out of trust and not because it is forced to. That is why I don’t work in a round-pen or square picadeiro, at least not in the beginning.  In such a small area the horse cannot move far away enough from me when he feels the need to. When there is enough trust and friendship it is a possibility for some exercises but not a necessity.

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5 thoughts on “Liberty Training


By Kas on 22 October 2014

Wow I really like how you explain liberty training. I started with my horse and I can see the difference. When I start training horses this is definitely how I am going to train them.


By Karine Vandenborre on 8 January 2015

Hello Kas, I'm very happy you can allready see the difference!


By Kylee Peters on 31 October 2014

Hi my horse Phoenix is a 8 year old quarter horse paint and is so lazy and does not like to lope! I wanna start him on liberty riding but just gets annoyed with me. If you have a cell number I would like to text you and tell you about him and was wondering if you could tell me what to do with him! Please and Thank you!


By Karine Vandenborre on 8 January 2015

Hello Kylee, it's very difficult for me to give you advice as I don't see your horse ridden. It could be that you make some mistakes with your aids (seat, legs, hands). It could also be that your horse is croocked, out of balance, and therefore gets grumpy when you don't support him with the reins (I suppose you mean by "liberty riding", riding without a bridle). Then the solution will be to gymnasticize and straighten him.
I am planning to open an English facebookgroup, for everybody who wants to learn more about Horsefulness Training, so if you make me a friendsrequest on facebook, then I will invite you to come in this group. If you want, you can then post a video there and I will take a look!


By Serenity on 16 May 2017

It might be a problem with his back. Have you gotten him checked by a vet? Most horses won't lope for no reason. He just may not be comfortable either. Our mare did that and with time she loped on her own one day on a ride.

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