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magpie4me

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About magpie4me

  • Birthday 09/10/1959

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    emcunnane@hotmail.com
  • Website URL
    http://www.metalfreehorse.com
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  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    IRELAND
  • Interests
    Horses and Learning

Previous Fields

  • Is a
    Level 1 Graduate
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    Group Organiser
  1. Going out for a long hack tomorrow, no rain forecast, but will definately be sporting thermals!!

  2. Hi Meredith I would like to pencil in the weekend of 15th & 16th August 2010. There will be a mix of level 1 and hopefully level 2 riders (me hopefully!!). I would also like a Colt start for Harley either before or after depending on what dates Helena wants for her course. Regarding training I will ask around to see if anyone is interested. What costs are we talking about for Colt Starting and Training so I can make some enquiries. What is the minimum horse age for training? Thanks a million. We are looking for to seeing you all next year!! Liz
  3. Delmation

    I have a wicklow collie who is my riding companion. She comes with us every ride. She is so good on the road and often lets me know by ducking into a ditch that there is a car approaching before we can even hear or see it. She will stick close to the horse are never bothers to even look at other dogs we pass, in fact she will avoid them. She will also round up the odd stray cow if wandering out on the road when we are out. She will always put them into the nearest gateway. In the mornings if the horses are out of site she runs out to get them and within a minute or two you see them coming with Tilly following up behind. I would definately get another collie.
  4. Hi Meredith I would like to have another clinic for Ireland next year for the North West of Ireland and hopefully Helena will be able to organise another for the South. If possible I would like a weekend clinic and tag on a Colt Starting for Harley. I have 3 definates (100%) so I just need to get another 3 (minimum) and we are set to go. Can you let me know what dates you can pencil us in for and I will start getting deposits organised. Thanks Liz
  5. RELEASE FOCUS TRAINING CLINIC, IRELAND

    Hi all, I have finally managed to upload videos from Day 1 at the Irish RFT Clinic. Title: RFT Clinic 22-23rd August 2009 Here are some pics taken during the weekend Thanks to Kathryn and Donijka who were in charge of the cameras I have just uploaded EVERYTHING that was snapped/filmed (UN-EDITED). Day 2 videos should be uploaded in the next day or two. (check the difference between Day 1 and Day 2!!)
  6. Thoroughbred's and barefeet

    Hi Fiddler As you know I prefer barefoot where possible. But in my quest to be totally barefoot I have spoken to a lot of traditional farriers and barefoot trimmers. Even the traditional farriers that I have spoken to in the past have indicated that the horse be de-shod for a period of time in any one year (varies from farrier to farrier) to allow the hooves to recover. Maybe the winter time when the mud tends to pull the shoes and cause problems to the hoof walls would be a good time to let the hooves rest and recover. You can use the boots for any trail or arena work during the winter months. I have used Old Macs on the Cob mares and Epic bares for a Thoroughbred. In my personal opinion the Old macs are too round for a Thoroughbred's feet but the Epic's seem to fit quite snugly. To make the Epic bares easier and quicker to fit you can add easy-up buckles I agree with stable time to be limited. Mine live in the sand arena in the winter and are only stabled in absolute dire conditions or if one of them gets sick and need space away from the others. They walk around in the concrete yard, have free access to the sand arena and the walkway (under cover) inside in front of the stables. PS. Have just updated to notes for the Irish RFT clinic and hope to post the videos this weekend. Liz
  7. RELEASE FOCUS TRAINING CLINIC, IRELAND

    Notes, Part 2...... We need to discover that the true flight distance of the horse is. It would determine how far you let your horse go before checking lateral flexion. IMPULSION PROGRAMMES: 1. Circles: Big circles will lengthen the flight disctance, small circles would shorten it. You don't want to shorten a young horse; you need to lengthen them first. To lengthen a short horse you'd cicle him at speed and stop at spped. The stop release while fast will teach him speed. If your horse bucks or messes and you stop you have taught him to buck with your stop. You have rewarded his behaviour. Ignore the behavious and move on. If it is very problematic then go back to basics. If he won't go then smack him but NEVER/DONT stop. 2. Point to Point: Comfort spot to Comfort spot. If hacking have a comfort spot at the halfway marker, ie. have a picnic and wait until he is relaxed before coming home. If he is still fast going home go back out. For a short horse put the comfort zone just outside their range and vice versa for a long horse. 3. Transitions: Laterally flex your horse through the transitions. 4. Sideways and backways: It shortens a horse. It takes the power out. 5. Simple lead changes: a lot would shorten your horse; less would lengthen your horse. 2 rein exercise.
  8. RELEASE FOCUS TRAINING CLINIC, IRELAND

    Here are the notes taken by one of the auditors at the RFT clinic in Ireland. Videos & pic's will follow very shortly. (Maybe this weekend as weather is promised bad on Sunday) Quantum Savvy Notes - Taken at Ireland RFT Clinic 22-23rd August 2009 by Donijka DAY 1 Synaptic Marker: Auto Pilot 3 principles of QS 1. The horse should always have options 2. Horses learn when release is offered (comfort) 3. To follow a repeatable, progressive programme These principles mean that we have to look at what is morally right If your horse is giving you an answer that you don't want then you need to re-evaluate your question. We need to ask ourselves better questions. We want horses going to comfort rather than away from pressure. You have to be in charge of everything, the horse should not be anticipating. The difference between trick and training: TRICK v's TRAINING Cue and response, an automatic process. It trains the instinct part of the brain rather than the logic side. No thought process, conditioned. Tricks don't calm horses, under pressure it will fall apart. Did the horse think about it? We need to be able to recognise this. Thought process is variable - can be done slow or fast, ie. if you lead your horse halfway into the box then fully in it's a thought process. If you can only get your horse in fast then it's a trick. Make sure it's communication. Look at what happens at a presentation/demo if something goes wrong. Do they have to go back to a start point or can they connect up while moving? It doesn't take horsemanship skills to trick train your horse, just pressure, release, cues and responses. Reinforcement comes after the action. Give the horse direction (no pressure, but feel). Give the horse a chance to go to the direction. If the horse doesn;t go the cause discomfort. You need to give good clear direction. Give the horse the opportunity to go to comfort before you bring in the phases of discomfort. Otherwise you get a horse that moves away from pressure rather than goes to comfort. Need to work on a progressive programme. You need to be consistent. Transitions are claustrophobic for horses. Horses are naturally claustrophobic. Frequently check your foundations. You need to have a balanced strength in the following four: GROUNDWORK - contact and no contact RIDDEN - contact and no contact Task 1 Desensitise your horse, rub him all over. Make him move in 6 directions (forward/back, left/right, up/down) with contact and no contact Horses live longer with natural horsemanship - mentally and physically stimulating. It teaches them how to deal with stress. PERSONAL SPACE: Your horse should be a sticks distance away When establishing your personal space hold your ground Don't walk back, he'll think he is dominant Don't walk forward, he'll think you are agressive Hold your body posture up When he moves back relax your body posture To come into your space he must ask politely by lowering his head. You can also ask by the rope LEADING FORWARD BY THE NOSE: Make sure he is desensitised first From an instict point of view having something grab your nose is like a predator Does he trust you enough? Important excercise if you want him to steer better Bend your horses head around. Walking sideways not backwards move your bum towards his bum Alternatively, push their nose towards their hind If the horse is nervy about having his nose touched, then as soon as he stops shaling his head let go This desensitising lasts as long as it takes for the horse not to object to your hand on his nose Leading by the nose teaches the horse to not always yield when pressure is applied It also teaches us to have good hands, ie. how much pressure is actually needed If the problem is in the stable, start work outside first, otherwise it removes the flight option and only leaves them with the fight option. Use the stick for personal space issues. TWO WAYS TO DESENSITISE YOUR HORSE: 1. Rhythmic motion - must be rhythmic, must have motion 2. No motion. Just stand still Putting on the bridle: If you put on the noseband first the energy is moving forward. If if goes on from the side the energy is moving downward. If you have a horse that puts his head up so high that you can't get his head down then he is telling you that he doesn't want it on! Get him good at lowering his head. Get creative,ie. put a rope around his neck. Phase 1-4 increasing pressure. Af er 4 go back to 1 and start over until he lowers his head. Don't release, just ease up on the pressure. RELEASE IS WHAT TEACHES If you are using your voice as a cue if could be leading into a trick. Rather than your voice, work on your body language. Position and body language is the horses main communication. Somtimes your voice can give you away, if your saying "it's OK" when you're actually nervous your horse will hear it in your voice MOVING IN SIX DIRECTIONS WITH NO CONTACT: Lean in the direction you want the horse to go and direct using your rope at arms length from the horse. If he doesn't go use your phases with the stick, all the time being aware of your personal space. Make sure you have asked clearly first. Once moving keep the stick on the horses back to help maintain your position. TO STOP: Drive the hind away Lean the rope back to his hind quarters to show direction The use your phases Put the energy to the hind quarters The energy must be directed AT the hind not FROM behind. Use the stick down to the hindquarters not driving them forward with the stick. Your body language has to be what it says Focus your body energy to the hindquarters Walk out and around to his hindquarters.If he hasn;t moved, phases with the stick on his bum. YOUR BODY LANGUAGE MUST FOLLOW THROUGH Don't use your strength on your horse. Don't lock down if he pulls. Either go with him a bit or extend the rope a bit. If a horse barges you don't stand your ground, make it uncomfortable for the horse. You may still get run over but don;t be a push over and don't use your strength. Session times: 1 1/2 - 2 hours. If you are working for 2 hours if should be because you are working on a problem. DAY 2 Close work: Very important to hold your position - don't be on a level with the hip, then you are in the kick zone. Stay level with the shoulder. That's why keeping the stick on their back keeps you in position. There's always a curve going over the jumps - lateral flexion is very important First thing you've got to establish is personal space **Anytime there is confusion of fear DONT use your phases** Shane would start a young horse with 1 rein. 2 reins will give a false indicator of how good your forward is. You don't want a "rubber necked" horse. The horse should lateral flex right through their body. Boxing: Create a corridor of comfort. Don't use phases at the box Bring the box to the centre of the yard Use rope halter Bring the horse over to the ramp then yield the hindquarters back again. Front two feet on and no further, then as far as you can get him. If he barges there is pressure on the rope so there is discomfort even if he's getting away. It's all in lesson 2 If you take too long on level 1 you may trick train your horse through it, ie. more than a year. Ideally it should be 3 months at 2 hours a week. Stretch yourself. Level 1 is a safety one. Until your through that you are not safe. You don't want your horse to get bored, keep it interesting and challenging. A claustrophic horse will go better from the nose than the mouth. A bit will make a horse more claustrophic. Sometimes, if they are foaming without working then they are most probably stressed. You get vertical flexion through lateral flexion! If you do too much bareback and bridleless, you'll hollow your horse out. They'll "run hollow" Too much flat work without collection will prevent them from developing the correct muscles. You can;t just do loose rein work. The bridle gives more accurate communication They need to be able to work on the halter. You can't be depending on the bit for stopping and steering Shane doesn't like the shank bit. Even the bitless bridles take away options unless it's a sidepull. The others clamp. If you are relying on the bridle there's something wrong with your foundations. Level 1ers shouldn't be outside the arena, your not really safe. Horses can do level 1 in 3 days, it's training the people that takes the time! *lateral flex tools until level 3* Shane is pro hackamore - a Bossalimo. Bossalimo means soft. NOT a mechanical hackamore because it is a leverage tool. When riding young horses you need to be doing lots of trotting. It uses both sides of their body. They need to get out and get moving forward. IMPULSION: - Controlled forward movement coming from behind. Lateral flexion - left brain thinking, soft and supple, repaxed. More of a learning frame of mind. Lying a horse down increases ins endophin levels (in preparation for death) so when the horse stands up it can be "naturally drunk". People think the horse is being submissive but it's not. Long Horse - Long Flight Distance Short Horse -Short Flight Distance More to follow......
  9. RELEASE FOCUS TRAINING CLINIC, IRELAND

    We have a 3 confirmed riders and 1 possible for the North West Ireland clinic for next year. If I get for the South, I will send on to you Fiddler. Between the 2 of us I am sure we can get this organised. It would be great if we could get 2 clinics going. 1 in the North West and 1 in the South. Would give more people access to QS and also make it worthwhile for Shane & Meredith. If I haven't got up to level 3 by the next clinic I would like to tag on a Colt Starting for Harley (who will then be 4) if at all possible.
  10. Hi - from a new member - half breed saddles info

    I am also looking for a halfbreed saddle for a short flat backed horse I live in Ireland and do not have the luxury of having a saddlery close by where I can try different saddles. My only option is to purchase online. I have tried a Wintec GP with interchangeable gullet, Bates with changeable gullet, Torsion Treeless Endurance and now I am using a cheap English style treeless. My problem is that because my horse is so round and almost without withers every saddle slips round and is obviously not very secure and/or safe!! Shane was over here this weekend just gone for an RFT clinic and suggested maybe a halfbreed saddle might fit a bit better than the one I am using at the moment. I guess a halfbreed saddle on a stock tree for a short backed horse? It is only for pleasure riding, no competition work. Any ideas or help on how to select/measure for the correct fit would be appreciated and maybe some suggestions on brands, etc. as I am not familiar with these type of saddles
  11. RELEASE FOCUS TRAINING CLINIC, IRELAND

    Just a quick Ta Dah following the Irish RFT this weekend!! Annalice (a rider at the clinic) came to collect her 2 ponies today, Mollie (also a participant) and Aragon. Aragon followed Annalice onto the trailer, no problem and I brought up the rear with Mollie. I walked into the trailer but Mollie only came as far as the the ramp and parked herself with her 2 front feet on the ramp. I walked out of the trailer, stood beside her. Point with the lead rope into the trailer and was about to use phase 1 with my other hand (only got to raise my hand about a couple of inches from my side) when she just walked into the trailer on her own. Ta Dah! This was a very, into your space, cobby mare at the start of the clinic. Normally if she did pass you, she would make sure she got you with her shoulder as she went past. This time, not even a suggestion of that move. Well done Annalice and Mollie!!
  12. RELEASE FOCUS TRAINING CLINIC, IRELAND

    Just spent 2 days with Shane at our first RFT clinic here in Ireland. Head is still Buzzn!! I learned so much. Now all I have to do is go out there and do it. Untrain all my tricks and start the training. I had my first real BFO moment this morning while I was down feeding my little herd. For those in Ireland who were at the clinic - Thank you so much for being there and for making this first clinic a real success! Hopefully this will be the first of many!! Shane you are a great teacher with a great sense of humour (must have Irish heritage)! Verena you were a star! Hope to see you all again next year with Meredith and the 2 babies. I will post up the notes, videos and pictures later in the week
  13. Introduce yourself

    Hi Everyone My name is Liz and I have four horses at the moment. Magpie, my year 8 year old Mare and mother of Harley. She is the Alpha Mare around here!! Harely, son of Magpie, born 5th June 2006 Polly, also and 8 year old mare. She is a horse on pony legs. Fondly know as my Black Tank. Quietly intelligent. Give the impression of being a bit slow but just takes her time digesting information. Loves to get things right. Would do anything for food, literally!! Baby, is a twelve year old ex-broodmare that I purchased in August to save her going to the abbatoir. She has very poor feet which I am working on to get right. She has a lovely foster home waiting for her when she is 100& fit. I have not done any official levels in any NH but have been quietly watching and practising for the past 5 years since I got my first horse, Magpie. I only recently discovered Quantum Savvy and I am hosting a QS clnic here in Ireland, with Shane & Meredith, next August with the hope of getting more owners to use these methods and give their horses a better quality of life.
  14. PlayDay 2008

    Some pics of me playing around with my three
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