HELP! I need liberty training ideas!

by Sara

my name is Sara and I'm 12 years old. I've been going through some tough times recently, and my guidance counselor said I should do some more things with horses to try and get me through it.

The horse's name that I lease is Peppy. Her pasture mate is Sunny. I was surfing the web a few weeks ago, and came across 'Liberty Training'. I thought it would be good for me, since my guidance counselor said I should do some things with horses. I asked my mom after i found it, and she said I would have to talk to the lady that owned Peppy and Sunny.

Just the other day, I finally got around to asking her, and she said yes!! I realized I couldn't do it on my own, so my friend Vanessa said she would help me with taking care of them. You know, grooming, feeding, stall mucking, stuff like that. But since Vanessa doesn't have the slightest clue how to do any of that, I said I would teach her.

Anyway, I said we would get to liberty training them when it gets a little warmer and dryer, since its only February and it has snowed and rained a lot. But there is one tiny little problem, I DON'T KNOW WHERE TO START! :( I've been looking up stuff like 'Liberty Training Basics' and 'How To Start Liberty Training', but I just can't find the perfect article that tells me what to start with, how to teach them how to do it, and stuff like that.

So, I turned to this website for help. I am asking you to help me. Comment any suggestions you might have! Also, if it helps, Peppy is a palomino paint quarter horse and is at least 14.3 HH, and Sunny is a blood red bay quarter horse and is at least 15.1 hands high, and they are both very well trained.

Peppy can be a little stubborn at times, but Sunny will do anything you ask, he ties good and his mouth is like butter and responds good to leg signals. They are also both a little older but act like they're maybe 6 or 7 (hehe) Thanks :)

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Jan 20, 2021
Liberty training
by: Anonymous

You should look up Sam Vanfleet on YouTube. I just started training my horse liberty as well and she has lots of different things to teach your horse and how to do it.

Jan 13, 2017
Liberty training ie Lilly
by: Mave

My sis and me used to work at a stables next door and we were the only people there. The owners never came out to see their horses so we became their "owners"... sort of.

My favorite to work with was a young spirited gelding named Jax. She had been really sick the year before and needed training. She was sorta clueless with liberty.

Meanwhile, my sister is in the very far back of the barn in a row of stalls that are all empty (there was literally like 25 stalls down this long huge hallway) except for one. In there was a small paint, Lilly. Her owner never came out except once a month to pay the bill and even then wouldn't go back to see sweet Lilly.

We don't know why but her owner WOULD NOT sell Lilly. I guess she was someone's from her family, but she wouldn't let us ride her. Lilly was perfect. We were riding her in the arena during a storm and a huge crack of lightning hit the roof and all Lilly did was--guess. She blinked! We were completely freaked out because it nearly popped our ears and I was standing on Lilly's back practicing a trick!

There were so many things my sis trained Lilly with and she was the perfect horse, really. Jay trained her to back up when she tapped her knee with a crop, then she would walk with you standing on her, and she would follow Jay without a lead rope or halter all around!

If you ran fast enough she would trot behind you, playing tag. She would not do barrels or jump, but was totally bomb-proof.

When the barn owner's grandkids would come out, 3-yr old and a 10-yr old, we would watch them and we would ride, all 4 of us, quadruple, on Lilly. She loved it and loved kids.

If you accidentally banged a bucket on the stall or ran down the hall (I'm a poet and didn't know it ;)) she would barely blink. Just look up at you with a brown eye and a blue eye and sniff you with her soft warm muzzle.

We miss her terribly and hope she has a good home now. So really, the trick to liberty training is having the perfect horse. Look up this link: aka, Mustang Maddy. We met her last year at a show and Jay almost went to her training. She is an awesome girl. We love you, Maddy!

Jan 09, 2017
Liberty training
by: Anonymous

Hey, I am only a few years older than you! I have been doing liberty work with my pony for a year or so now since I outgrew him! I wanted to keep working him.

I started in a small round pen and got him really good on the lounge. Then no lines but still in the round pen, made sure he would follow me anywhere in and out of the round pen.

Asked a friend to help me get him listening out in the pasture then worked just 10-15 min a day. I have had for a long time so we already have a bond.

Make sure you have a really good bond with Peppy and Sunny before you try any of this! Sounds like they are well-trained so they should learn quick.

Take your time, go slow and never work with them if you are upset. Hope this helps. Good luck!

Jun 24, 2014
Hope this wil help!
by: Kyla

This works on my 4 year old ( who is still in training :). ) Her name is Flicka and what I do with her is just have her halter and lead rope on her and have the lead rope hang over her back (like a one piece split rein).And walk her around holding on to the lead rope while its still on her back and once she gets the hang of it I just slowly remove my hand. Eventually she will reach a level where I can spin her, back her up, and do what I ask. (And I would longe her a bit before so she'll listen better. And longeing is running the horse in circles both left and right.
Hope this helps!

Kyla. :)

Jan 25, 2014
Go here!
by: Nikki

Go here to get started on your liberty training:

May 14, 2013
Join up
by: Anonymous

Try doing Join Up. It's a relatively simple exercise that gets the horse to view you as lead mare. It may take some time though, so don't expect immediate results within five minutes.

Mar 20, 2013
thanks guys :)
by: Sara

thanks Xavier and Unicorn, your ideas will really help me get on the right path with Peppy and Sunny's liberty training. I haven't started yet because where I am, we have SNOW in MARCH! And the outdoor riding arena, (where I will begin their training) is still all muddy, full of puddles, and its just a HUGE mess. so around April/May when it gets a little warmer and dryer, I will begin and go through the summer, and about half of autumn. Wanda (the lady who owns Peppy and Sunny) said I could go down there any time I wanted, so I will take it to my advantage, hehe. and Niki, I know how to train a horse, as I have been riding since age 7 or 8 and have helped my instructors train some horses since age 10. And yes, I agree with you. It can be very easy at times, or it can be SUPER hard. It all depends on your horse.

P.S: guys, if you haven't checked out my story 'My Wish Came True' go read it! I haven't been around to make part 8 yet, but I am typing it up today! :)

Mar 13, 2013
Training Help
by: Niki

Hi my Name is Niki what's yours? Ok if you do not now how to TRAIN A HORSE IT IS EASY!!!! Please read next chapter to hear how to train a horse.

Mar 04, 2013
Hi Sara
by: Unicorn

Been there too, girl. Hold on!
With a lot of work, I taught my horse, Thunder - a foal I bred myself who is now two years old - to follow me around. If that counts as "liberty training" - a horse who will follow you without being led, run when you run, stop when you stop, go over a jump when you do (though that requires a bit of athleticism on the part of the human...) - then this is how I did it.
I started Thun's halter training when he was three months old. By eighteen months, I had taught him to walk on a loose lead beside me and respond to my body language and verbal cues and not so much to the pressure of the lead rein, at a walk and trot. It was a natural progression to snapping off the lead and asking him to follow me, acting just as if nothing unusual was happening. Thun barely noticed the absence of the lead. By the time I backed him at two years of age, he was tagging after me like a well-trained dog.
The key to it? I believe it's just time, trust and patience. Especially time. The trust a horse puts in you once you have trained him to do this is enormous; it's like extended join-up. If he will follow you of his own accord, he trusts you and knows that you're a safe place to be.

Feb 27, 2013
Sorry :(
by: Xavier

Sorry for your tough times :( It must suck.
Anyhow, with liberty training, the first thing you must be sure of is that the horse/s are adequately well trained in the saddle. If they are not, just take a few weeks getting some more response in their work or improvement in the area that he/she lack at.
Now, it depends on what type of liberty training you were after. If it is, hypothetically, just being able to control them on the ground(make them come to you, basic movements around you, that type of stuff) than it is best you start on a lead rope. Just lead them around, and give them a treat when they follow you. Gradually, let go of the rope, and if they follow you, reward them. To get them to come to you, start with calling their name when they are in an arena(not a paddock, because they will definitely come to you) and,if they respond, reward them with a treat or whatever you like. Praise them and pat them-anything to make them feel accomplished! If they show no interest, be patient, they will eventually get there.
I would write more, but I am afraid that I will go over the character limit. I give you best luck for the training :)

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