negative reinforcement

Debunking Myths: ‘The Whip is only an Extension of my Arm’

‘The whip is just an extension of my arm,’ ‘I don’t use it to whack my horse with,’ ‘I only tap my horse lightly and I don’t cause pain’ are only a few of the explanations horse people give when they are asked why they are using a whip. They don’t realize that the whip IS an aversive tool and the reason the horse listens is because of that. There is an alternative, a way of training without force that works just as well and leads to a better relationship with your horse.

Difference between Negative (R-) and Positive Reinforcement (R+)

Let’s start with explaining what positive and negative reinforcement is. Then I will share what was a real eye-opener for me about the difference between positive reinforcement (R+) and negative reinforcement (R-). It is not so much the obvious difference (the carrot or the stick-difference), it’s way cooler! Definitions Reinforcement (R): strengthening (a behaviour) + …

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Debunking Myths: ‘The Whip is only an Extension of my Arm’

There are so many myths in the horse world it is hard to choose where to start debunking them. Since I have seen several advertisements on Facebook with videos of horses at liberty and instructors talking about ‘freedom’, ‘connection’, ‘positive training’ or ‘friendship’ while carrying a whip directing a horse with a swishing tail and …

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Myth Monday: ‘With Clicker Training the Horse only does it for the Treats (not for you)’

The statement that a horse only works for ‘the treat’ and ‘not for you’ is one that I have heard many times. In fact this is one of the most common arguments used by people who use negative reinforcement to train their horses.  What motivates the horse: you or the food I also prefer to think in terms of ‘motivation’ …

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