Shiny Happy Horses

October 22, 2014

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Horse Resists Clipping?

Learn How To Help Your Horse Accept  Clippers

Clipping can be comfy.  Many people inadvertently teach horses to dislike being body clipped...

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October 06, 2014

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Is That Horse Body Clipped??!

Waiting for Scores

YES!!! Freshly clipped and SHINY!!!

I get a lot of questions about Body Clipping. This image was taken last week. The horse had its FIRST CLIP of the fall a week earlier. Does the coat look ruined??? That is great grooming. It's a HIGH COMPLIMENT is when someone asks, “Is that horse clipped?

This horse gets groomed vigorously daily, before and after work.  This keeps the hair fine.  Currying exfoliates and stimulates oils.  Grooming pulls natural protective oils down the hair shafts, to close the end.  That is why this horse does not have the wire brush look.  Instead, he looks like satin!

The Ace of Spades Treatment

Normally, Ace of Spades is bathed once a week, sometimes more often. He also got a soap bath before and after clipping. The barn only uses the shampoo that instead of stripping the coat, actually enhances natural oils: This Lucky Braids shampoo is all you need to achieve that great coat.

This TopTurnout Salute goes out to the great groom Martha Briseno and all of Snowbrook with trainer Kimberly Prince. Their horses are always meticulously managed.

I just love to honor and celebrate EXCELLENCE in HORSEMANSHIP!

~Ruthann


 

October 02, 2014

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The Painted-On Look

Painted-On Look

Amanda Steege's Top Turnout

We call this the PAINTED-ON LOOK. People talk about numbers of braids. A great braider knows what's REALLY important is that the:

  • Bottomline of the mane is perfectly straight.
  • Mane braids are sized so they sit well on the neck.
  • Cheat the angle so braids are longer toward the poll than the withers, and the neck looks rounder.
  • Maintain a really uniform and/or gradual visual rhythm to the braids and they carry your eye down the neck.
  • Braids are comfortable and sturdy. Braids that look painted-on won’t jiggle to distract the eye, nor go askew with scrubbing crest releases.

This is a topnotch braid job by Jeff Claxton, is yet another way Amanda Steege distinguishes herself and Ashmeadow Farm for *EXCELLENCE IN HORSEMANSHIP.* Consider this another Top Turnout Salute!

Braid like a pro

If you want to braid like this, lots of tips are posted in the Grooming Resource of this site.  Get the formula down and your manes can look like this every time.  I suspect this took about 35 minutes. Here's how to learn to braid like a pro.

Enjoy,
Ruthann

*This grey is SHINING IN THE DARK for Lucky Braids All-In-One Shampoo.

September 28, 2014

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Grand Prix Riders' Braiding Advantage

“Horsewomen are always several notches above riders....”

                                                                            – Judy Richter 

Two-time American Invitational Winner Molly Ashe Cawley braided Carissimo before their recent double clear. She was brought up to work hard and keep tuned into the horses. Molly's mother, keen horseman Sue Ashe, set her up for success in that way.

When third in the world, Peter Wylde still braided his top horse. It was part of their *program,* when they got in a groove together before a class. I taken care of Peter’s first grand prix horse. Yet later, when I offered to braid for him at United States Equestrian Team Headquarters, he declined. Their routine *worked.* During SEVEN selection trials, he had ONE rail.

Why braiding is important

“Braiding well is part of horsemanship. It is a small part, but those little things add up.” -Michael Matz 4-time Olympian and racehorse trainer
If you know how to braid and manage your time well, it is very relaxing for you and the horse. Thing is, braiding is a bit like salsa dancing. You can braid with all your heart, but that bottomline won't be perfect. You really need to know and execute each step accurately. Then, you can sail! If this seems interesting, whether a beginner or seasoned professional, you’ll up your game with the Lucky Braids DVD/Tool and all-important, specialized BRAIDING YARN, available here.
Guaranteed, or your money back. ~Ruthann
 

Special Mention

Photo credit and THANKS to: Linda Umla. — with Norfield Stables LLC at the New Albany Classic

August 24, 2014

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Welcome!

Sounding the Horn

 

Our new website is a library of SOUND HORSEMANSHIP, as well as a celebration of excellence in horse husbandry. Use it as a reliable source for best practices, including: grooming, braiding, handling, safety and stable management. The tips will help you save time and money every day in the barn, while keeping horses healthy and happy.

Keen horsemen know handling and care very much mandate performance. They set the groundwork, establishing a horse’s worldview, while keeping its body able. Preparation may include the process of braiding, which can send horses to the ring relaxed and focused, ready to win. Those are considered “lucky braids.” While this site is the most comprehensive educational resource for braiding, that's just one aspect of what you can learn.

Since 1974, I have been working with top international competitors across disciplines. Many of the years were spent atop a ladder, twist’n manes and tails. It was the perfect perch from which to study systems and synthesize knowledge.

Lucky Braids products for Top Turnout are fruits of that labor. Attempting to manage horses’ hair and skin, day and night, I kept thinking: there must be a better way. With plenty of time "in hand," I figured out solutions for the most pervasive grooming problems. Turns out, my international groom/pro braider mindset is worlds away from that of chemists with marketing dollars. Great grooms don’t want to a lot of products and to be treating problems. Hence, the paradigm shift: the highest quality care CAN be easiest and most cost-effective. Different game.

My mission is to raise the bar of horsemanship. Education on this site is designed to close gap between practices standard among elite horsemen, and those of the masses. Equestrians over the ages learned plenty the hard way. Maybe now you won’t need to.

The horses come first. When I visit friends, many of whom take care of or ride grand prix horses, they are always generous with their wisdom. I take it in, aiming to pass it on to you. Hopefully, at the end of the day, your equines’ needs will be best served.

So, please explore the site. Freely comment and question. If I don’t have the answer, I know who does. Some issues require in-depth tutorials. Many are underway, just needing time... and a little patience.

I also invite you to join my e-publication and blog. The quarterly newsletter will offer special  insights, invites and promotions, while the blog shares handy tips frequently.

Thanks so much for your interest and support!

Enjoy all,
Ruthann