Horse Starting (Colt Starting)
Hall Place Stables at Noverton Farm has been a family business for over 70 years (40 as a DIY livery) so when it comes to understanding our customers and their horses we have had a lot of experience. Hundreds of horses from race horses, dressage, ponies, quarter horses and jumpers, have been brought to the farm either for livery or for starting, training or a re-education all have been handled by one of the Sinnett horseman.
Brian’s philosophy of passive horsemanship has always been one of an end result, the basic concept is to work with nature and to influence it as opposed to any notion of trying to change the natural order of a well-disciplined control. A passive invitation is offered by creating a situation where making the right thing easy and the wrong thing difficult creates the right sort of energy to initiate a desired reaction, by presenting the horse with the opportunity to make the right choice. This empowerment develops an autonomy and purpose for the horse. Their fight or flight instinct gradually become controlled and the horse adopts a more positive outlook to the creation of a working symbiosis. All horse behaviour is dependent on creating the required dominance, it is only then that any training can start this perfect practice could consist of any element of training from ground work, ponying, riding out, to even roping. It is this sense of controlled liberty which attains the most out of a young horse and provides a solid foundation in its future development.
Starting - Behavioural tendencies that are frequently addressed include;
- Crowding (barging)
- Foot handling
- Catching /Turning out
Age, discipline and breed characteristics can all highlight potential obstacles and behavioural tendencies, which may or may not come to fruition when working with a horse. However we will appraise the horse either at you premises or at Hall place stables.
If feasible we will observe the horse and rider together within a controlled area, to assess both together. This helps identify any areas of weakness that may need addressing, whether it manifests itself under saddle or from the ground. From this point we are able to make some initial recommendations. At no point will we ask a rider to work with a horse if we feel the animal is either potentially dangerous, they are lacking the necessary skills or confidence to work the horse. Both the riders and horse safety are paramount and always at the forefront of our minds. To achieve a symbiosis with the horse it is fundamental that both equitation (the technical aspects of mounting and riding the horse) and horsemanship skills (the ability to move around your horse and to engage with its natural movement) are developed. Our opinion is that it is crucial for both horse and rider to embark on the journey together and that the if rider is lacking that they must also develop their skillset to enable them to communicate with the horse in a way that will enable them to take the horse home at the end of the period instilling confidence in both parties.
It is always difficult to give in an exact time period for the length of a horses stay as this is dependent on the horse’s individual temperament. Although on average both starting and schooling vary from 8 to 12 weeks, during which period we encourage the owners to be part of the process.
At Hall place stables we offer a range of facilities including:
- 200 acres – pasture, woodland, gallops
- 65ft Round pen with carpet/rubber service
- Inside square barn/arena
- Hay Barn
- Fenced paddocks
- Tack rooms
- Arena 80 x 30m
- Veterinary services