PRINCIPLES of LEARNING THEORY in EQUITATION
Updated: Feb 6, 2020
1) Safety First: Understand the horse’s strength, speed and power.
2) About Horses: Know horses need their 3 F’s (Forage, Friends, Freedom). Understand the flight response and what it looks like (and what to do about it)
3) Moods and States: They think differently to us and we shouldn’t under or overestimate their abilities
4) Emotion: Keep their arousal levels low, be consistent and avoid anything that causes pain or fear
5) Desensitisation: habituate the horse to things gradually
6) Operant conditioning: use negative and positive reinforcement correctly. No punishment!
7) Classical conditioning: use alongside operant conditioning, but know its limitations
8) Shaping: train behaviours gradually, step-by-step.
9) Signals: One signal must be given at one time. Each signal should be something different to another
10) Self-carriage: ensure the horse can maintain behaviour without being held or nagged
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