Does your horse ever not quite stand still, creep forwards so find yourself correcting him repeatedly, or get easily distracted and bumble around when you want him to be still?
Here is a short TrueFlow™ video about how to ask for stillness.
If we correct the horse for moving repeatedly, we might ask the question - why is he not clear about being still?
Correction generally means a Feel of pressure from the person against the horse's idea to move, until he stands still, then a release.
If it's the release of pressure that teaches and we are super careful to time our release accurately to stopped feet, why does he not "get it" and keep doing the same thing?
To me, it goes something like this, when we take a walk in the horse's hooves:
If I put pressure on and move him to a certain spot, then release, 3 things just happened in terms of Feel:
1. My input was "that's wrong" (correction) and a bit uncomfortable
2. The place I put him is also now uncomfortable too because I pressured him there (a bit like a child being made to sit on the "timeout" step - you are just itching for the moment you can get back up!)
3. When I release my pressure accurately to make sure he's clear what I mean, I offer him a Feel of disconnect (and leave him there with his own thoughts about what he should do next)
So, while this is something I did for a bazillion years, I came to realize something very odd, when I immersed into a Feel-based approach. I want my horse to be with me and still, but I get active in correcting him, make him a bit uncomfortable, expect him to stay put, and drop the connection! Hmm. Maybe there is room for him not to be so clear afterall.
So what if instead we just offered a Feel of stillness and connection...?
Here's an example of what that might look in a minor, everyday moment of a horse feeling a bit worried about hearing something out of sight.
It's also an example of what I call the "bits in between" the actual training purpose we really had in mind, where there is a big opportunity to bring value to the partnership from the horse's point of view instead of a minor confrontation. This stuff really adds up
For extra points haha, imagine what would happen and the end result if I, say, bumped the rope under this horse's chin or twirled the rope at his hip to correct the unwanted movement - what might his response have been and how would end result differ?
This is longer than the real clip because I added some commentary - I hope this will be helpful in getting a sense of the mindset (as with anything this is about 80% of it) and Feel of this. Ok, take a look!