When Plan A Does Not Work...

...keep calm, take a deep breath and remember: the alphabet for sure has one or the other letter left for you.



We all have been there: we have a trainer, we have some knowledge and we are trying the best job we can do to train our horse. And still, from time to time there are moments when you say to yourself: that does not work! You feel your horse being against the good idea you just had and you try harder to make it work just to find out that plan A simply does not work this time. So what should you do then? Here is a list of five things you could do:

1. Ask your trainer

Hopefully, you have a good trainer who can always help you with some good advice. A good trainer also has not only one idea to solve a problem, but a whole tool box. The chance that any of these work should be pretty high.

2. Ask another trainer

Still, sometimes you work with a trainer for such a long time and you have talked too much such that there are no alternatives left from your trainer's side. In some cases, your trainer might not have seen similar situations. So, why not ask the trainer next door? No matter if the trainer is a trainer of your choice or you do not know him at all: you can take advice from everyone because you never know, he or she might hold the solution to your problem - of course, I am talking about horse friendly solutions only here! Abusive methods are never okay, even though the trainer might be an Olympian, his students might be the most successful around. Use your common sense and give new input a chance.

3. Ask your friends

All of us have issues. Nobody can go for a ride every day and never ever face difficult situations. It might be very likely that one of your horsey friends had a similar situation with his before and a good advice for you at hand.

4. Read books, articles and blogs

There is such a huge amount of knowledge out there, for sure, with some exceptions, you should be able to learn something from the crowd off- and online. I cannot even say how many things I read about horses every day and there is still tonnes of information and advice to be discovered. A very good read is Patricia's The Dressage Tipster blog for example. Look at the right sidebar, there are some more that I can recommend.

5. Watch videos

I guess in the meantime there is at least a video on every horse problem somewhere on the internet. Videos are also a good way to be able to visualise what a certain movement or a certain aid should look like. I love to watch videos and use them especially when preparing for a test: I then search for somebody who scored at least 70% on this particular test and watch closely what they did to get that score right.


No worries, there is a solution for every problem. And if plan A does not work, try B, C, D,...

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