Look at the changes these clinics can create! Read more.
Welcome to the AT HOME clinics
I love teaching clinics. I love the connection and community that develops during the clinics. I love the great learning that occurs. I love seeing horses and handlers learn and make progress.
What I don’t love is the sometimes piecemeal approach to the training that occurs during clinics because people are all over the map in terms of their clicker training experience, handling skills, and the needs of their horses.
So how can I keep what I love about clinics and solve the haphazard approach to training that works best when it unfolds in a systematic, layer by layer process?
The answer: teach on line.
So here is what I have created for you.
I have created eight courses. I am tempted to call these “The Connect The Dots Clinics" because that is what they do. If you have been to any of my clinics, you’ve probably heard me say: Everything is connected to everything else.
These clinics prove that.
“Words, words, and more words. I just want to ride!” Yes. I know that. Here’s the sneaky part - in those first, most basic clicker training lessons you are riding. It’s just that your feet are on the ground. Everything is connected to everything else.
In these clinics you will come to understand deeply how.
So let me share with you in a roundabout way what these clinics are about and how they will work.
I am a clicker trainer. That tells you that I use positive reinforcement in my training. But it doesn’t really tell you much beyond that. There are so many ways to use positive reinforcement. Which “brand”, “which “umbrella” do I fall under?
To tell you HOW I train I need to add that I am a constructional trainer. That means that instead of tackling head on an unwanted behavior, I shift my focus to what I would like my learner TO DO. I consider underlying component skills that make up the behavior I want. I teach those smaller, simpler building blocks first.
That gives me the repertoire I need to teach the more complex behaviors. Except by the time I’m ready to teach them, they don’t feel complex any more. I have the repertoire, both in terms of skills needed and concepts understood to turn what used to feel like a hard task into the next easily achievable step.
I don’t want to teach my horses in one way and then use a completely different approach with people. So I have also taken a constructional approach to these courses. I could let you jump in anywhere you like. That would mean I’d have a lot of people jumping straight to Course #8: Riding from the Ground Up.
I know riding is where most of you want to head with your horses. Of course, you want to ride. It’s only natural that you want to take the most direct path to get there. It’s even tempting to let you jump ahead to the riding clinic. Maybe you’re thinking: “My horse is reasonably safe. I can skip past the first couple of clinics, especially the first one on the basics of clicker training.”
I’m not just a constructional trainer. I’m a loopy trainer. That means I use movement cycles to train. You’ll be learning about these concepts in the courses. I won’t try to explain them here. But I will say that in loopy training you want to begin with success. You want to begin with a behavior that is already familiar to your learner. You are often choosing a very simple behavior because you want to get consistent “yes” answer responses right from the beginning. Those “yes” answers aren’t cluttered up by a lot of unwanted behavior.
So I don’t want you to begin in the middle where you don’t have the training steps in place to support the new concepts and skills that I’ll be presenting in that course.
I want us to begin together at the beginning. I want to build this work through the constructional process, layer by layer, developing a shared repertoire of core concepts and skills.
So what I have built are eight clinics that give you a very thorough grounding in the science, the core concepts, the handling skills, and the teaching strategies that will let you train to a very high level of performance. What? You’re saying that’s not your dream. You just want to have fun with your horse. Exactly. A great relationship is one of the highest levels of performance any of us can achieve.
I know what some of you are thinking. You already know the basics. You want to get on to the advanced work.
When I need to video one of the foundation skills, I often use my horse, Robin. It’s been decades since he had his first targeting lesson, but every time I go back to these early lessons with him, there’s a ripple out into the rest of his training.
He knows these basics, but the context has changed over the years. So returning to the simplicity of the basics is always useful.
I’m reminded of details I have glossed over with him. And suddenly, whatever we were working on in his “advanced” training feels a lot easier. It happens every time.
I’m saying this to all of you who have been through the basics. So have I. Many, many times. In fact more times than I could possibly count. And I will tell you I always learn from them.
Advanced training is just the basics done very, very well.
Why am I saying all this?
Because I have designed eight courses, but they aren’t set out buffet style where you pick and choose which one to take. Instead think of them as a grand full course meal that’s been prepared especially for you. Each course contains many delights, many surprises. You don’t want to miss any of them, and you certainly don’t want to skip ahead and sample just the desert. It is best appreciated in the context of everything that has come before.
“Yes, yes.” I can hear your impatient replies. “But what will I be learning? Will you fix the problems I’m having with my horse?”
I’m not going to be fixing anything in any of these courses. I am going to be showing you how to teach your horse what you would like him to do.
In the first course I’ll be showing you how to introduce a horse to positive reinforcement training. We’ll look at the details that make a difference.
I’ll be using the basics of clicker training to introduce you to some very complex concepts that we’ll be using throughout all eight courses.
And here’s how sneaky this is. While you’re learning how to teach using positive reinforcement, your horse is learning great ground manners. This gives you a great starting place for being able to answer the many “how do I teach my horse to _____” questions you may be starting out with.
But I want a lot more from these courses than that. I want to share with you my passion for good balance. Through these clinics I want to help you understand why good balance matters; why it is so important for your horse’s welfare. I want you to experience good balance. I want you to see it. I want you to feel it - both in your horse and in yourself. Because once you do, there’s no going back.
Here’s more of what I want: when you think about positive reinforcement training, the images that pop into your mind are of soft, balanced, enthusiastic, happy horses.
To help you get there I have filled all eight courses with images of horses who discovering their own good balance. These are horses just like your own. The handlers are recreational riders not professional trainers. What they are discovering is both the beauty of their horses and the deep connection that comes from thoughtful training.
And here’s something more that I want: at the end of all of these courses the image of good balance that comes first and foremost to your mind is that of your own beautiful horse.
Come join me on a learning journey!
Then let me share with you how these courses work.
Each course has a self-paced on-line component. You log into the course and go through the prepared material at your own pace. There are no quizzes to pass, no other members of a class you have to keep up with. If the weather is bad or life gets crazy, no worries. You will be going through the material in the course at your own pace.
But you are not on your own. I will be holding regular coaching sessions. So, as you work with your horse, you can send in video of your sessions for feedback and training suggestions.
The coaching sessions will alternate between a noon and a 6 pm eastern time starting time to accommodate those of you who live in Europe and in Australia and New Zealand.
You will get out of the course what you put into them. You can certainly go through the course material entirely on your own. In that case what you are getting is essentially a series of webinars.
To turn it into a clinic experience - which is what I envision - you can sign up for the coaching sessions. You can attend every session I give, or you can space them out. It all depends upon what will best meet your needs.
Who else will be in the coaching sessions? Anyone who is registered in the clinics. So you might be brand new to clicker training, just starting out with the first course. That’s grand. You’ll be getting feedback not just from me, but from other experienced trainers in the group.
You’ll get to see what they are working on, so you’ll see what lies ahead for you. When you’re ready, you’ll have lots of ideas for projects you can teach your horse.
The more experienced trainers benefit from the questions and the reminders of the basics that new people bring to the work. We all benefit from sharing with one another.
I won’t tell you what you will learn from the courses. It is so much a study of one. Instead I’ll share with you the syllabus for the courses. This is much more than a series of lessons. I have created for you a very detailed, thorough training program.
I want to develop good trainers. I want excellence. But don’t let that scare you off. If you follow the structure of constructional training, step-by-step, layer-by-layer, excellence is something you can achieve for yourself and for your horse. It begins with wanting to know more.
Register now in the 2022 Clinics. The individual courses are part of a larger teaching program. I encourage people to go through them in order. You will begin by registering for Course #1. After you have completed each course, you will be able to register for the next course in the series. The preceding courses are prerequisites for the next course. The courses are all self-paced so you can move through on your training schedule.
The courses are each $250. Registration in the course is good for one year. Just a note about the price. I was originally planing on a higher registration fee, but given the current events and the rising inflation, I have lowered the price. Higher gas prices will impact the cost of everything related to caring for our horses. Instead of raising the price on the courses, I have decided to lower it.
Registration in one of these clinics means you can also join the Live Virtual Coaching Sessions. I will be holding regular coaching sessions in which you can get direct feedback on your training. This is truly Stay At Home - Learn at Home. Once you are in the courses, you will receive invitations to the coaching sessions. Each session is $75.
If you have questions about the Stay at Home - Learn at Home Clinics, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
The 2022 Clinics: Stay At Home - Learn At Home On-Line Clinics
What do YOU want from a clinic?
Sharing with other clicker trainers
Clear, easy-to-follow instruction
New ideas to teach your horse
Perfect! Because that's what these AT HOME Clinics bring you. You get to learn with people from all over the world - and you get to stay at home.