Natural Horsemanship in the Middle Ages

The Web Whisperer just overcame a longstanding glitch in our systems. We are now able to access all the horse training, horse showing, and adventuring media we have been creating through the last few months. Expect a bunch of belated updates!

Our friends in a neighboring kingdom hosted an SCA medieval equestrian practice. We jumped at the opportunity to play our favorite medieval horsemanship games with great people while increasing our horses’ competencies. We love win-win-win!

Our horses faced new places, new horses, and new challenges…even new outfits! Natural horsemanship laid a solid foundation for acceptance and quick mastery of new experiences. Clicker training accelerated the horses’ comfort level with flailing swords, bobbing lances and billowing costumes.

Lucy, of course, took it all in stride:

Lucy, 5 yo TB mare for sale, cross-trains at an SCA medieval equestrian practice

 

Lucy, all around TB mare for sale, cross trains at an SCA equestrian practice

Lucy, all around TB mare for sale, jousting at the quintain

Natural Horsemanship and Cavalry Mounted Shooting

Natural horsemanship pops up in the most unexpected places!

Mark and I stopped in at the National Conservation Center for their Autumn Conservation Festival. The Center is located almost next door to Mark’s house, which we’ve been prepping for sale throughout the summer. Throughout the early 1900’s, the Center acted as a bustling Cavalry Remount Station. The 7th Virginia Division E Cavalry set up their encampment and performed demos throughout this weekend’s festival.

One of the training drills resembled our medieval reenacting game of Behead the Enemy and the increasingly popular cowboy mounted shooting. Horse and rider race down a line of head-high balloons trying to shoot them at speed.

 

 

 

A cavalry officer on a novice horse unwittingly demonstrated a foundational principle of natural horsemanship: work with the horse’s instincts to make the right thing easy. In this case, another rider on a seasoned mount flanked the spooky horse throughout the run. The novice horse gained confidence from the veteran’s nonchalance in the face of gunfire, smoke, and popping balloons.

 

 

 

I guess you can take the natural horseman out of the training arena, but you can’t take the training arena out of the natural horseman. Even on “non-horsey” days natural horsemanship pursues us!

Return to the Middle Ages

After Saturday morning riding lessons, I snuck over to a neighboring SCA medieval equestrian practice.

Lady Alienora from the Incipient Canton of Abhainn Iarthur generously shared her steeds with me.

Lady Alienora and JR

Lady Alienora and JR at the Reed Chop

Lady Brandwyn Alston of the Rift, Atlantia’s Deputy Earl Marshal of the Horse, marshaled a day of medieval horsemanship and impromptu music.

SCA medieval equestrian game of tilting the rings

Gorgeous day in the pouring sunshine, doing the things I love most in the world, while ethereal voices sang period ballads under the pavilion. Yup, great times had by all!

 

Sca Equestrian Practice

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