True liberty, says Jonathan Field, is much more than simply removing equipment and stepping outside the pen or arena: It is moving with your horse, communicating only with intention, and creating a seamless, smooth and rhythmic dance.
“When you do liberty right, you become one with the herd,” he writes. “And not only do you develop an amazing connection with your horse, but it’s one of the most fun things you will ever do.”
Developing communication skills and your relationship with your horse through liberty benefits all that you do, whether on the ground or in the saddle, whether competing or riding for pleasure. Quick responses to subtle cues, clear aids, and a relaxed and attentive horse: These are the keys to liberty, and they are also objectives when you ride, drive, or interact with the horse on the ground around the barn. Liberty, therefore, teaches you to be an all-around better horseman or horsewoman.
With Jonathan’s step-by-step liberty training method, you learn to have a better ‘feel’, to reward the horse sooner, and to time your aids just right to ensure you get the response you want. Plus, you discover how to approach things from the individual horse’s perspective – an important key to getting a horse to act because he wants to, rather than because he has to. Fabulously illustrated with hundreds of action-packed photographs taken on Jonathan’s spectacular ranch in British Columbia, this book can change the way you are with horses and change the way horses are around you.
“The horsemanship journey doesn’t end with liberty,” writes Field. “It’s just the beginning of connection.”