In this day and age the term “natural horsemanship” has become the latest mass marketing effort to reach the equine community. As much as the general public has increased their awareness in realizing there is a “gentler” way of working with their horses compared to the old ways of “breaking” horses, many of the ideas you find in the easily accessible books, videos and DVDs don’t offer a whole lot that is “natural” about the methods presented to start and train horses. Too many times new clients come to me for help because the “general teachings” presented by trainers and clinicians geared towards “mass teachings” can create a lot of undesired results when undereducated students (horse and rider) aren’t able to fully grasp the how and whys of concepts nor the timing and finesse of techniques properly and wind up in less than ideal situations.
People can simulate horse behavior and communication, but none of it will ever be as “natural” as one horse communicating with another. So the term “alternative” was suggested by a client of mine who realized I was using the same “concepts, timing and pressure” as horses would if they were communicating with one another, but with an alternative way of communicating the same information.