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Horse Tips and Tidbits

using leg Using Leg: A Confusion of Terms: Feature Article - 4/15/2014

An online chat about an article that discussed how to get the horse 'in front of the leg' caught my attention recently. The students argued whether the writer was right or wrong. When I read the article, I realized that their disagreement arose, in part, because of the bewildering use of terminology in the horse industry. People use different terms to mean the same thing. Or they use the same term but with different shades of meaning.

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Relaxation can be achieved on the ground and in the saddle 36 Techniques to Relax the Horse & Rider: Feature Article - 2/6/2014

Relaxation is basic to everything we do with our horses. In the moment when a horse's muscles tense and he feels like he wants to run or buck, most riders unconsciously join the horse by tensing their muscles, too. The reverse situation occurs when a tense rider makes the horse uncomfortable and tense. It helps to have a tool kit to reach into when relaxation just is not happening.

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Relaxation is both a Mental and Physical Game Relaxation is both a Mental and Physical Game: Feature Article - 12/16/2013

"Drop the reins. Trust me, JUST DO IT!" I addressed this command to a more advanced student mounted on a 17-hand Thoroughbred known around the barns for his sensitivity. It was the student's first ride on the gelding and she later admitted that, between the horse's reputation and his size, she was terrified.

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Tips on Establishing Relaxation with your Horse Three Ways to Master Relaxation: Feature Article - 9/24/2013

One of the reasons relaxation sits at the base of the riding and training trees is that it is the first element you must establish each time you work with your horse. Until both horse and rider have achieved a point of relaxation in body and mind in their pre-ride interactions and warm up, any subsequent work will be inconsistent or inaccurate.

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Tips on Establishing Rhythm with your Horse Tips on Establishing Rhythm: Feature Article - 8/6/2013

Rhythm and relaxation create an endless information loop that is the basis of everything else we do with our horses, either as trainers or riders. You need both to communicate clearly with your horse and you cannot have one without the other. Think about how this combination feels in your body as you ride. Relaxation makes it easier to set rhythm, and rhythm makes it easier to relax. On the flip side, tension in either horse or rider disrupts rhythm.

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Tips for dealing with horse show jitters Show Day Warm Up Routines: Feature Article - 7/2/2013

Professional trainers and riders understand that the warm up routine they choose for each individual horse can be the deciding factor in whether they win or lose their class. Some novice riders, on the other hand, misunderstand the importance of this pre-competition step. They may not think about how they will ride their warm up until they put their foot in the stirrup. With a little planning, riders can avoid wasting this crucial prep time.

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Tips for dealing with horse show jitters 4 Tips to Plan Your Warm Up Before Show Day: Feature Article - 6/1/2013

Winning rides depend on a pre-class warm up specifically tailored for the individual horse. At the very least, a warm up routine establishes rhythm and relaxation while creating a connection to the aids. Trainers and seasoned competitors understand that one of the best ways to win classes is to plan the right warm up. Put another way, a poorly planned and executed warm up risks losing a class before they even go through the in gate.

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Polo Wraps and Boots: Video Tip - 5/8/2013
Polo wraps and boots

Sam describes several types of equine leg protection and how to put them on the horse. She covers polo wraps, brushing boots, splint boots, open front boots and sports medicine boots.

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Tips for dealing with horse show jitters 9 Tips for Managing Horse Show Jitters: Feature Article - 5/1/2013

Horse shows are games people play with their horses, and showing gives horse-minded folks a chance to socialize and have some fun. But showing can be a stressful game for both horses and riders, especially if you are unprepared. Follow these nine tips to minimize show day stresses with some thoughtful preparation.

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Ask the Students: What do you think of Meredith Manor? - 4/22/2013
What do you think of Meredith Manor, Reviews?

Current students respond to Sarah Candee's question: "What do you guys think of the college? I have been looking into Meredith Manor for a while now, and it seems perfect." with their reviews of Meredith Manor.

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How to Perfect Your 20 Meter Circles: Video Tip - 4/17/2013
How to improve your 20 meter circles

Sam presents an exercise to improve your 20 meter circles.

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Ask the Students: Should I bring my horse to MM? - 4/15/2013
Bring your own horse to Meredith Manor

Graduate Claudia Boyle responds to Tiara Peterson's question: "Should I invest in adopting a horse now and board there- or use one of the schools horses/students horses? (I don't own a horse)"

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Spring Shedding: Video Tip - 4/10/2013
How to deal with Spring shedding

Sam shares some of her favorite tools to help your horses shed this Spring and get rid of that Winter coat.

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Ask the Students: Do any students live off campus and have families? - 4/2/2013
Live off campus at Meredith Manor

Students respond to Kathleen Tyrrell's question: "Do any of the current students live off campus because they have families and kids? If so how do you balance it all, and are there any good daycares or in home child care providers?"

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Differences Between English Saddles: Video Tip - 3/27/2013
How to properly fit your helmet

Dressage, Jumping and All Purpose saddles, what's the difference? Find out in this Tip of the Week.

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Ask the Students: What is a typical day like at Meredith Manor? - 3/25/2013
Typical Day at Meredith Manor

Students respond to Kenneth Klein's question: "Are the hours like 12 hour days?"

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Helmet Fitting: Video Tip - 3/20/2013
How to properly fit your helmet

This tip describes how to properly fit your riding helmet.

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Ask the Students: Where can I get tack on a limited budget? - 3/18/2013
Find horse tack on a limited budget

Students respond to Amber Ratliff's question: "Where is a good place to get the required tack on an extremely limited budget?"

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Training Braids: Video Tip - 3/13/2013
How to use training braids

This tip describes how to use training braids to tame your horse's mane so that it lies flat and on one side of your horse's neck.

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Ask the Students: Do any students get four-year degrees prior to attending Meredith Manor? - 3/11/2013
Four-year degrees prior to attending Meredith Manor

Students respond to Jordyn Clutter's question: "Do any students get a degree at a traditional four year school, then decide to go to Meredith Manor and make a career of the horse industry instead?"

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Fitting the Bridle to Your Horse: Video Tip - 3/6/2013
How to properly fit the bridle to your horse

This tip describes the differences in the three most common types of bridles used by students at Meredith Manor: Cavesson with Flash, Drop Noseband, and Figure Eight, and shows you how to properly fit each style to your horse.

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Ask the Students: Can someone attend MM with limited riding experience? - 3/4/2013
How much riding experience do you need to attend Meredith Manor?

Students respond to Autumn Marie Morris' question: "Do any students go into Meredith Manor with little riding knowledge or experience?"

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I miss Meredith Manor often and am forever grateful for the foundation you gave me and the dedication forever engrained in me for the horse industry.
Carol Brown: 1974 Riding Master IV Graduate