Proprioception is the awareness of where our body parts are in space, what each is doing, and how much energy the movement is using.
Here is a definition from the Internet:
Proprioception enables us to judge limb movements and positions, force, heaviness, stiffness, and viscosity. It combines with other senses to locate external objects relative to the body and contributes to body image. Proprioception is closely tied to the control of movement.
I’ve collected together an assortment of video clips I’ve made over the years that include ideas we can use to encourage the horse to be aware of where his feet are and what they are doing.
Quite a few of the clips are part of a training series and I’ve chosen just one of the series to illustrate the overall task. By going to my YouTube channel – herthamuddyhorse – you can find my assortment of playlists containing series of numbered clips to show the thin-slicing I used to achieve the final task. Message me if you need help to find a particular series.
Good proprioception relates to all sorts of things, but mainly to overall balance and suppleness.
Horses that grow up in rough hill country develop good proprioception as a necessity for survival. Horses raised in confined areas without needing to move much to find enough food don’t have the opportunity to develop excellent proprioception.
In the same way, athletes become good at their sport by developing the aspects of proprioception that especially relate to that sport. If our lifestyle lacks regular movement, our body suffers the same way as that of a stabled horse.
#88 HorseGym with Boots: Foot Awareness. https://youtu.be/7bEkFk0w_gk
#89 HorseGym with Boots: Balance on 3 Legs. https://youtu.be/x1WKppV3N_0
Playlist: Challenges for Clicker Trainers: August 2017 Challenge: Precision with a Single Rail. https://youtu.be/bJzwDq-NvtE
Playlist: Foot Awareness: Thin-slicing the 1m Board. https://youtu.be/pLLqtbQJqMs
#220 HorseGym with Boots: Counting with the Front Feet Clip 1. https://youtu.be/hHpQgsUOINA
#246 HorseGym with Boots: Counting with the Hind Feet. https://youtu.be/rMsRVL_M33w
Playlist: Foot Awareness: Single Obstacle Challenges Hoops 3. https://youtu.be/xc-4yGiWDxk
Playlist: Challenges for Clicker Trainers: September 2017 Challenge: Figure 8. https://youtu.be/QrberCzAO6c
Playlist: Challenges for Clicker Trainers: November 18, Sidestepping Clip 1. https://youtu.be/Joxp9bYzMRc
Playlist: Foot Awareness: S-Bend Final Clip. Click here.
#199 HorseGym with Boots: Unusual Surface with Bottles. https://youtu.be/3LTmUSa0Y1M
#184 HorseGym with Boots: Back Between Rails. https://youtu.be/FGh7_MeFHcQ
#95 HorseGym with Boots: Backing down Slopes. https://youtu.be/M9pEFnDSbwc