Flag Work Pieces

Last week we talked about how challenging it is to put all of the pieces of the puzzle together when you’re learning to ride. There are so many of them.

Every time you find one it’s like a little treasure. It makes it so much easier for you if you view learning to ride as hunting for these puzzle pieces… and being delighted to find them.

In this video, I take you through getting ready to work the flag from the saddling area to completion of the practice. I’ll go through a number of the ‘pieces’ and share with you how I see those different segments.


VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

Heh, it’s Barb.

Last week we talked about how challenging it is to put all of the pieces of the puzzle together when you’re learning to ride. There are so many of them.

Every time you find one it’s like a little treasure. It makes it so much easier for you if you view learning to ride as hunting for these puzzle pieces… and being delighted to find them.

In this video, I take you through getting ready to work the flag from the saddling area to completion of the practice. I’ll go through a number of the ‘pieces’ and share with you how I see them.

I see them as segments. I see parts about you, the rider. I see parts about your horse. I see parts about your discipline and then there’s what happens (the chemistry) of you and your horse together.

I started in the saddling area because when I saddle a horse, I check out their legs. Is their demeanor ‘normal’?… etc.

And then I have a plan. My plan today is that I’m just going to go work Nic on the flag a little. I want to work on me staying relaxed. I’d like to get a few smooth turns with Nic. I’m not focused on anything ‘big’.

Now, I’m going to head out to the arena. The first thing I’m going to do is warm up. How much energy our horses have is important, as well as where their attention is. I’ll see you in the arena.

BARB WITH NIC IN THE ARENA

I’ve been out here trotting and loping. At first, Nic had a lot of energy and wasn’t listening. I’ve trotted him fast and slow and loped a bit. I want him to listen to my seat. (Nic stops with Barb’s seat). I think I’m ready to go work him now.

I want his muscles to be nicely warm. I want him to be listening to me. We’re ready to go practice.

BARN WITH NIC BY THE FLAG

Even though I’m talking about working the flag, all of these ‘pieces of the puzzle’ apply to any kind of riding (except flag specific maneuvers).

Another ‘piece’ is the rider and being ‘grounded’… that the feeling of calmness, focus, and connection to your horse through your seat.

My job as a rider is to be clear about what I want to do, ie, what cues I’m going to use, how I’m going to work him and the outcomes I would like. Today, I’d like to have smooth turns.

What I also want to do today… and the job of all riders… is to be responsive to what actually happens.

I’m the leader with Nic. What does he need? And all the while I stay soft in my body, grounded in my seat and keep my eyes on the flag.
(Barb works Nic on the flag and comments as she goes.)

Another piece is that after your ride you can reflect back and decide what went well and what didn’t go well. Then you have your plan for next time.

I hope this video helped you think a little more about some of the pieces and how to evaluate your rides.

Have a great week and please leave a comment for me.

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Comments

20 Comments on Flag Work Pieces

  1. Tania Allman on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 1:18 pm
  2. Loved your breaking things down on your flag work.
    Breathing and slowing down
    Loved your stops with Nic
    Thanks

  3. Jeanie on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 1:44 pm
  4. Thank You so much for this little video, I’m having a hard time relaxing when I work the flag or cow , that I sometimes lean into the flag or cow and keeping my legs in front, this helped me to remember to breathe 😊

  5. Tonya Holmes on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 1:58 pm
  6. Loved the waiting times. Between actions. Good for all disciplines. Teaching them to wait on you. Your breathe faciiitates their breath.

  7. Carm on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 2:24 pm
  8. It’s great how respectful of Nic you are, and what he may need, and how calm you are throughout. I sometimes get so over-focused on what I want to “accomplish” and forget to relax, which is the key to success!
    Agree this applies to all disciplines. Thanks!

  9. Becky Richerson on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 3:11 pm
  10. I love working my barrel horses on the flag- keeps them correct & attentive – start them on it at 3 & they catch on quick- helps to have a husband that’s a cutter🥰

  11. Kathleen von Ruff on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 4:19 pm
  12. I loved all the breathing, relaxing and mental preparation on your part.

  13. LindaB on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 4:46 pm
  14. I agree with the others that the emphasis on waiting, attention, proper form, breathing, responsiveness…is helpful. I really appreciate the step by step “thinking out loud.” It is very interesting.

  15. Janet Cochran on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 5:51 pm
  16. Loved this one, you always have good reminders. My cutting trainer passed away last fall, I finally got my own flag so I could practice. Do you have more flag work videos?

  17. Carol MacGregor on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 6:32 pm
  18. This was so much fun to watch you and Nic work the flag. I’ve watched it twice now–both of you are so calm! I can see you take a deep breath and get “grounded” after each stop. Thank you very much!

  19. Cyndi Guinn on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 6:58 pm
  20. Thanks for the specifics with flag work. I am so looking forward to the November clinic!

  21. Pam on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 7:19 pm
  22. Thanks once again for the important points of information. I always look forward to your videos.

    Take care
    Pam

  23. Kim Darnall on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 7:20 pm
  24. Thanks Barb

    I just remembered….to remember
    TO BREATH!!!

    PS
    I love NIC

  25. Linda van den Bosch on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 7:49 pm
  26. You are a lovely rider/horsewoman.. ooze confidence 🙂

  27. Donna Padula on Sun, 16th Aug 2020 9:32 pm
  28. Thanks, Love you , Just had a 3 day clinic with Bill Riddle , I need to make some changes?? I left a message on you office phone last week, need some help.

    thanks 530-517-0513

  29. Caroline Mackinnon on Mon, 17th Aug 2020 3:00 am
  30. Hi Barb, that was fascinating! I have mustered cattle and worked them in a farm situation but have never seen the flag training before. Lots of great inspiration. Caroline, Australia

  31. Tom Fuller on Mon, 17th Aug 2020 8:38 am
  32. Good Morning Ms Schulte;
    I look forward to your presentations. There is always something to learn.
    More than that for me; I am a Equine/Western Artist. Listening to you, your comments and watching the horse gives me more insight to the psychology of the horse and rider. A very important part of my paintings.
    Thank you
    Tom Fuller

  33. DeAnna Ball on Mon, 17th Aug 2020 2:41 pm
  34. Absolutely fascinating to watch and have you tell us what you are thinking and doing. It gives me a pattern to try and follow in my next ride. Thank you!

  35. Adele Constable on Mon, 17th Aug 2020 4:47 pm
  36. Loved it! I wish I could take a clinic with you but unfortunately they’re all too far away for me. Do you ever come to Washington? I live in British Columbia. I’m 78 and still riding my quarter horse, hopefully for many more years.

  37. Erin Whitener on Tue, 18th Aug 2020 7:42 pm
  38. Love the reminders of what our job is in our sessions. Helps keep me focused.

  39. Keeley Vanek on Fri, 28th Aug 2020 4:39 am
  40. Great job showing me how to relax. The physical effort of taking that deep breath and letting it out was a great example of relaxing. I am definitely going to try that when I work the flag next.

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