What can a Bucket teach us about Horsemastery.
How a crisis in water caused me to think about the simple bucket and some things are unchanged over the centuries.
The loss of 15,500 gallons of drinking water disappeared – gutting. It took me a few days to recover from this awful situation. Thanks to kind people who came to me with buckets, jerry cans and gave me enough water to drink & cook and took my laundry home with them and expecting me to visit for a proper shower. After spending one day having a “nervous breakdown,” I remembered how I swam in the dams as a kid, so I started not showering (showers do not work unless water is coming in), but “bucketing” to wash. Every morning I was organising the water situation for the day. Buckets of dam water: in the kitchen for washing the dishes, buckets for the flushing of the toilets, buckets in the bathroom for washing self.
This made me ponder about the “good old bucket” and. of course, I started to think about horses and my dislike for unnecessary gadgets with horses.
What can a simple bucket teach us? Apparently, Yazujsti Ghana, from China invented the bucket nearly 900,000 years ago. Different materials used over the centuries, but the same basic design has been used.
Why is the bucket still designed the same way? Would it be because it is still the best design for its use and because people around the world have all used buckets for centuries?
I am not against creative thinking to a different need or a better way to do something. Sir James Dyson, has proved that with the bagless vaccuum cleaner, he found a different way for a particular problem and found the improvement. In addition, to increase performance, it was a way to save money; bags not needed. This was not a case of of pandering to the current vogue nor was it because the operators did not how to use it. Trains and motor vehicles replaced horses and narrowboats on canals, something new.
Horses have are basically the same as hundreds of years. Of course, over the centuries there have always been badly educated horses and people, BUT with educated horses and riders a simple snaffle (or double) bit still works really well. My experience of Yardah horses and my students around the world have found that all the gadgets and new designs are normally unnecessary, and often hard on the horse. It is just a matter of educating “the operator” (rider) to handle “the vehicle” (horse) correctly; and the horse prepared for his job.
The book Art of Horsemanship by Xenophon is 2,400 years and in those days people depended on their horses for their lives.
Making a small effort in diplomacy, I am not pointing in any equestrian direction. I will talk about “the bucket.” You reader, (hope there is one or two,) can transpose my comments to your horse experience. People need to ask “Why a new thingamajig? Is it necessary? Is there a good reason? Is it because someone is impatient?”
No doubt, someone will try to market the “new bucket” and if there is a specialist use for a new aid that is good. The Waterwheel and similar seem to have a real use in the world but time will tell. Garden watering bucket – it is good for the specialist use of broadcasting water. What about the jerry can with a tap? It is useful for carrying liquids in a vehicle or transfer liquid, but you can still also use a good old bucket for these uses, though you need to take more care in the transport or transfer. The watering can, the jerry can & the waterwheel do not replace the bucket, though they can assist for a specific reason. With horses, a gadget or a special bit may be necessary to assist a child or a physically challenged adult for safety, or a horse in a highly charged adrenaline activity, or a horse with genetic predisposion to be difficult (why bother?) but in the normal use of riding – “simple and less” is much better.
The internet allows people to provide reasons why the “new bucket” is better. It seems that any new idea is natural, recyclable, organic, green, better for the water and the world and for the human and animals and no other buckets have been used in research. (key green words.) It will accompanied by diagrams of why this new bucket is better AND it will be $9.99 with more bonuses. (My satire effort. I have always loved the writing of Terry Pratchett and his gentle satire. But perhaps I need more lessons in satire. Would watching Sesame Street help?)
What is normal equipment?
On the first day of my clinics, which is mostly spent assessing each person and their horse. For that reason, I request that people use their normal equipment so that I can see what has been happening. There are a couple of NOs as they are banned from my clinics. Unless it is really obvious, anyone who is using more than simple equipment, I ask to be told why? Then I will make an assessment. I might suggest that the person should try to “go naked;” that is, a simple snaffle bit and no noseband nor a martingale. On the other side, I might suggest that she does not change any equipment at present.
Why are some people able to train a horse without relying on extra equipment?
I had hoped to complete the “promised” 26 topics on my blog but my priority is to launch the CHI Membership Platform. On this you will be able to watch the clinic tapes -as a virtual spectator and you will see the progression of the CHI warriors. Partnership of horse & human are a unique combination, you will be, I hope, inspired to see over the months, how far they have come from, where they are in the journey and how they can reduce their tack, rather than adding more. Seeing someone in their last clinic, does not mean that their horse is “dressed,” but they are committed to working on their masterpiece and they have a PLAN.
Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel was said to have advised the following: “Once you've dressed, and before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take at least one thing off.” “A woman is closest to being naked when she is well dressed.”
While the virtuoso, was talking about a different “dressed” the same pieces of wisdom applies to both elegance of fashion and training horses.
Have fun dancing with your horse.
Over and out.
NOTE: Only talking about buckets, no equestrian equipment mentioned. I am such a diplomat!!! 🙂
P.S. The good news is that the universe provided me with the full 15,500 gallon tank AND the key dam is now half full– in 24 hours. There is no pasture in the paddocks due to the torrential rain, but that is not as scary as no water. We were so excited to see the water running into the dam.
PPSS. I love bling, leopard print, purple and silk. Can I suggest that next time you wander into an equestrian shop, buy some bling for the horse or yourself (a forehead band) rather than whatever the current is in vogue to control the horse.
A good education for the horse ensures longevity.
PPPSSS! What did you like or not like in this topic?
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