Lately I’ve come across quite a few articles and blogs claiming to ‘debunk’ Natural Horsemanship, as being a bit of a hoax. I’d like to clear a few things up.
First off, as with almost every other realm in the world, Natural Horsemanship has it’s fanatics. Those who bring the basic concepts to an all to high extreme of spirituality making it sound like we think we can get down on all fours and whinny to communicate with our horses.
I’ve got news for you, we don’t actually think we are horses, and we are not trying to pretend we are. We are merely trying to mimic them the best we can. Take for example if you go to the hardware store, but can’t for the life of you remember the name of the piece you need to fix the shower. Are you going to stand in front of the sales clerk and pretend you are a plumber and you know everything, or are you going to try and explain the piece you need the best you can. “You know the little silver arm the connects the shower head to the copper pipe?” In this situation you are simply ‘mimicking’ someone who knows more about plumbing in order to get your point across.
This is what we do with horses with Natural Horsemanship, we are not trying to convince the horse we are also a horse, just like we where not trying to convince the sales clerk we where a plumber. We are just trying to communicate the best we can.
Horses have a way of communicating that we can attempt to mimic, this results in the horse noticing we are trying to communicate with them, and they will make an effort to understand. Because they are instinctually inclined to want to communicate, they have to be to be in a herd environment.
Just as any Joe-Shmo can walk into a hardware store and buy anything a general contractor would, anyone can pick up a lunge line and stick and string and claim they know what their doing. Just as one bad handyman should not reflect on how professionals work, one bad horse person should not reflect badly on the rest of the Natural Horsemanship world.