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13 March 2009 @ 11:10 pm
Book Review: If I Were To Train A Horse - Jack Brainard  
Jack Brainard is a trainer who specialised in reining but after sixty years at the top of the Quarter Horse industry his experience and knowledge are second to none. I've seen him ride and I can safely say that if at any point in my life I can ride half as well as he does at eighty-seven, I'll feel like I'm doing pretty well.

This is a very practical book, discussing collection, establishing control of the front end, control of the hind end and straightness and then using that to develop lead changes, stops and spins. Rather than talking about ideas, ways of thinking or feeling in the way many books on horsemanship do, this one clearly discusses techniques, how they operate and how best to apply them.

Although Jack is very much part of the western riding tradition, the people he references in the book are people such as Boucher, Racinet, De Carpentry and Seunic and his knowledge about horsemanship in general is very broad indeed. He's also very considerate of the horse - almost every chapter where he describes a technique ends with "don't drill this" and "know when to quit."

Clear, practical and very readable, this is a book that I can see myself coming back to time and again.
seren*serennig on March 14th, 2009 12:34 am (UTC)
Oooh, I have to check it out!