How Mindful We Are – NOT

October 10th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , , |

It was possible, I thought, that such distractedness arose from some evolutionary necessity. But I could not figure out how such fractured focus would have served us in the wild. In any case, it never fails amazing me how often during a 20-meter circle we riders drift off purpose. It seems like a small, clear task [...]

Ride and Breathe at the Same Time

September 11th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , , , , |

There are many reasons for the breath to be free while riding. One is that you stay connected to your parasympathic nervous system – that is where calm lives – so not only will you stay in a good place emotionally, but your horse will sense this and stay calm too. Another is that breathing keeps [...]

What Did You Call My Horse?

September 6th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , |

Our barn visitor offered her comments good-naturedly, but still I bristled. She had chuckled at one or another of Corazon’s antics and then called him a male diva. A what? I didn’t share her chuckle, puzzled as I was that anyone could see this leggy Andalusian as anything but majestic and regal, maybe even brawny. Her [...]

Space for Improved Training

July 16th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , |

If my horse, Corazon, wore a Fitbit, or other daily activity tracker that have become popular devices for people aiming to more active lifestyles, I imagine this is how it might read: 200 steps chasing neighbor’s black cat around pasture; 50 prances along perimeter fence next to a mule deer; 150 relaxed ambles moving from one [...]

Its All in Your Hips

June 28th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , , , , |

If riding were easy it wouldn’t be an Olympic sport.  Two brains, two personalities, a million moving parts, and gravity – where do you begin to bring it all together so both horse and rider can enjoy balance and comfort? The answer is:  your hips. Apart from the fact that that is where your body meets [...]

Gallop to Better Training

June 8th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , |

Here we go galloping - gulp. I tried to work up the nerve to let the reins out another inch or two as we cantered around, but I was having a really hard time doing it. First of all, my horse might run off. Second, if I got lucky and she did not run off, she [...]

Our Horses Sometimes Send Us On Unexpected Paths

June 7th, 2018|Categories: Advice|Tags: , , , |

Written by Alice MacGillivray, PhD. In my work world, managers often believe you can plan everything.  And if things don’t go as planned, then you didn’t do a good enough job planning.  Of course we know there are so many possibilities, it is usually impossible to plan anything in detail accurately.  That is certainly true in [...]

WARHorses Easy Guide to Choosing the Right Colors for You and Your Horse

May 31st, 2018|Categories: Advice|Tags: , |

"I told you to get me a Hunter Green blanket!" When your horse disapproves of your color choice, you’ll know it. Choosing colors can be a conundrum--do I want the light blue or indigo pair of jeans? Does this red top go with these orange sandals? There is a great deal of pressure [...]

Here We Grow Again

May 8th, 2018|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , , |

It never gets old. Maybe it owes to some obsessive wiring I have, but I could find satisfaction schooling shoulder-in every day. The finesse and precision and challenge of it never tire me. Fortunately for my horses, though, I’m prudent not to indulge that satiating sameness day after day. I’ve come to accept this as a [...]

Herd Dynamics Heard Loud & Clear

September 26th, 2017|Categories: Advice, Training|Tags: , , |

Alice MacGillivray, PhD, is author of “Riding Horseback in Purple” written for “women of age” who maybe considering horse ownership – first timers and re-riders alike.  Alice guides readers through scenarios that help dissect the reality of horse ownership from our childhood fantasies. An expert in adult learning, Alice explores ways we connect with horses as [...]