Because horses are prey animals, they instinctively react to sudden movement. Some horses over-react, which can be dangerous. Build your horse’s confidence and courage by desensitizing him to your movements with this easy tip. It’s actually a variation of Game No. 1, The Friendly Game, or as Pat Parelli likes to call it, the Confidence Game. Start with your horse in halter and lead line, stand at his shoulder and simply hop lightly. This will give you an idea of your horse’s reaction. If your horse reacts, reduce your motion, then increase it again. Or move further away from your horse to hop. You can even hop outside of his stall if that’s where you feel safe. As your horse’s confidence builds and he is able to stand quietly, increase your motion. Build to the point where you can skip circles all the way around your horse without him being bothered, reacting, pinning his ears or moving away. As his confidence in you increases, you can include jumping jacks, dancing, anything you think your horse might react to that you could use to build his courage. Ten minutes of this program every day will help to make your horse braver, smarter and more athletic!