Training specialist for Equines

Joost Harenborg accompanied us at the very first seminar of the training specialist horse and captured the mood of this unique seminar format wonderfully.

Since the first series of the Training Specialist for Equines started in September, we have been proudly watching the progress of the twelve highly motivated trainers via our Facebook homework group. Now, we are looking forward to module 2 on November 25 and 26. The topic will be ‘signal control’.  We still have last-minute tickets for participants in the theoretical parts available.

FAQs trainer special eqine

Personal requirements for attendance

Can I participate only in the theoretical part?

Yes, of course. You can participate in and benefit from the theoretical part, and gain valuable insights by observing the practical training, listening to the explanations of the trainers and developing your documentational skills. We strongly recommend to rework the workshop’s topics at home.

A place for the theoretical part only costs €250 including VAT, freshly cooked lunch, drinks and snacks.

Is the Training Specialist for Equines for horse trainers only?

No, anyone who is interested in the scientific background knowledge of modern animal training and developing his/her training skills is welcome at the workshops.

What are the prerequisites for the workshops?

Currently, there is no common standard for trainers with positive reinforcement in horse training.

You should be familiar with the scientific background of classical and operant conditioning, e.g. the four quadrants, primary and secondary reinforcers, Matching Law, response cost, and so on (Viviane Theby’s ‘Verstärker verstehen‘ is recommended reading).

With regard to the practical part you should have already mastered basic training skills like good coordination of clicker and feeding, and be able to teach a horse a solid basic stance from which to start from.

If we have never met before under training conditions, I kindly ask you to call me prior to your application, so we can determine whether or not this training format is adequate for you.

Is it important to have already participated in the Chicken Camps?

No, this is not a prerequisite. However, a Chicken Camp background helps a lot when starting the TSE.

Organisational matters

The fee per two-day module is €360, which includes VAT, a freshly cooked lunch each day and snacks and soft drinks. You can find the details for each module with dates and rates in our online shop.

How many modules are there?

Each series of the TSE currently consists of ten subsequent modules. The first seven lay the foundation, and modules eight to ten deal with complex training tasks and a deeper understanding of the topics of the previous modules.

What are the topics of the modules?

  1. Training systems
  2. Signals and signal control
  3. Training plans and documentation
  4. Training criteria
  5. Behavioral chains
  6. Discriminational tasks
  7. Concepts
  8. –  10.  Recap and complex tasks

What shape does a module take?

In the modules, practice and theory units alternate. During the theory, the respective topic is discussed on the basis of the current tasks. We reflect on the previous practice unit, and talk about problems, solutions and insights. During the practical units each participants learns three ways: to train a horse, to assist as a co-trainer and to observe and document ‘from the outside’.

The workshops take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on both days.

Do I need to book all 10 modules?

No, you can choose whatever topics you are interested in. However, in order to receive the TSE certificate, you need to take part in all modules in the right order.

Do I need to book all modules in the correct order?

In order to complete the entire training, all modules must be completed in the appropriate order with horse. However, it is also possible to participate only in individual modules. In this case it is necessary for the participant to have acquired the knowledge and skills of the previous modules in another appropriate way. Therefore, you are required to consult with us prior to your enrolment, and, if necessary, submit a training video.

How long does the TSE take to complete?

The TSE stretches over a period of one and a half years, with one module every two months, respectively one double-modules every four months, depending on the format.

Can I switch between single and double modules?

Yes, of course, provided you stick to the correct order of the modules. We have already uploaded all dates for 2018 and 2019, so can go to our webshop and plan ahead.

Is there any difference between single and double modules?

No, there is no difference. You can freely choose the format that suits you best. The contents is exactly the same.

Is there accommodation on-site?

Yes, the Steigerwald Ranch has several rooms for rent with two shared bathrooms.

Successful learning by…

What does that mean: intensive coaching during practical units?

A special feat of the TSE is the presents of several training pros: The instructors Linda Veltkamp and Nina Steigerwald, as well as varying TOP trainers of the ‘Tierakademie Scheuerhof’.  Thus, you have a competent contact at any time and stage during your training for feedback and backup.

What do you mean by ‘homework’?

The homework is intended to further intensify and extend the skills of the respective module.

Training is a craft. This statement by Bob Bailey encourages us train as often as possible. The more often you put your knowledge into practice, the faster your skills will improve.

Homework is captured on video and uploaded to the group’s own Facebook group. This is used to reflect on short video clips from one’s own training and collect insights from the group. If you do not have a Facebook account, we will find an appropriate alternative.

I do not own a horse. How can do the homework, then?

In order to complete the homework you do not necessarily need to train your own horse. Ask around, if a friend or neighbour is willing to give you his/her horse for training. This creates a beautiful win-win-win situation for all involved.

My four-legged training partner in the modules

Do I need to bring my own horse?

No. If you come from a great distance or your horse is not a professional traveller, it makes much more sense to train with one of our horses. It is only €25 per day, and you have a professionally prepared training partner on-site.

In order to receive the certificate, you need to rehearse and video shoot the tasks from the respective modules at home.

What does my horse need to know to be able to participate in a module?

It is indispensable that your horse gets easily on a trailer, at home as well as abroad. It should know how to solidly stay in a basic stance (we call it ‘wait politely’) no matter where the trainer positions him- or herself.

If the horse has physical disabilities, we should talk about appropriate tasks beforehand.

Are there accommodations for my horse at the Steigerwald Ranch?

Yes, there are visitors paddocks available with electric fence and a three-meter distance between the adjacent paddocks. There is haylage for the horses, and, if the season permits, pasture access.

It lies in the responsibility of the owner to care for his horse, provide food and water, and clean the paddock after use. Please bring your own water bucket.

Paddock rent is €15 per day.

In order to have a stress-free training module you should only bring your horse, if it trailer-loads easily and calmly.