What is Clicker Training ? Part 6

What is Clicker Training?

Here’s the final installment of the article: “What is Clicker Training?”

Part 1 defined What clicker training is.
Part 2 looked at the basic procedures of clicker training.
Part 3 looks at reinforcers.
Part 4 asks WHAT we teach.
Part 5 returns to How we teach.
Part 6 concludes with what it means to be a good splitter.

Splitting Apart to Build Great Things

If you are used to conventional riding, you might not recognize the early lessons in the clicker training teaching progression.  Because we tease every lesson apart into very small component pieces, the beginning steps will look very different from conventional training. From a clicker trainer’s perspective where most people begin is at a very “lumped” stage in a teaching progression.

My personal riding niche evolved out of classical dressage.  I have learned to use the movements of dressage to help horses find their own beautiful balance.  It is this balance that promotes lifelong soundness.

The building blocks of this work can also be used to ride a dressage test, develop your jumper or cross country horse, train your western performance horse, prepare your trail horse etc.  Whatever your riding goals are, The Click That Teaches training program will help you achieve them.

What Kind of Horses Benefit From Clicker Training?

All horses.  No matter the breed, age, size, or training history, clicker training is good for horses.  The starting point is not always the same.  A very young foal can certainly be clicker trained, but you’ll be using scratches instead of food for reinforcement.  Aggressive horses will need to begin with more protective contact.  Very fearful horses may need you to be clicking for any sign of relaxation.  Food may not be a strong reinforcer for them yet.  They’ll appreciate much more having you look away to give them more distance.

Super reactive horses may need you to spend a lot of time clicking for any outward sign of calmness.  And starved horses may need more time settling in to the idea that food is not something to become anxious or overly excited about.  They are now living in a world where food will not be withdrawn or denied to them.

All of these horses can be worked with using the principles and methods of clicker training.  The Click That Teaches provides a thorough, detailed training program that will help you train the horse you have.

What Clicker Training is NOT

Clicker training is not a recipe.  It is not a one-size fits all form of training.

What Clicker Training IS

Clicker training is an approach to training that empowers YOU the handler to find the solutions that will help you and your horse develop a super relationship.  It is a dynamic, creative, FUN process.  Sometimes you will have to go have the proverbial “cup of tea” while you have a think about a particular puzzle your horse is presenting.  You’ll get ideas from the books, DVDs, on-line course and other material.  You’ll also get ideas from others who are using clicker training.  But remember this is not a recipe driven type of training.  You’ll be using the principles and structure of clicker training to develop a training plan that is tailored to your own horse’s needs.

Have FUN!

To read the full article visit: http://www.theclickercentercourse.com/what-is-clicker-training.html

Alexandra Kurland

To find out more about your UK Approved
The Click That Teaches Instructor
Visit www.smaarthorses.co.uk

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