Training Techniques

Show JumpingMajor advances have been made in recent years in the area of studying horse psychology and learning. Based on these exciting developments, techniques used in horse training can now be assessed in a more scientific manner, and replaced, where necessary, with approaches which make use of the horse's learning abilities more efficiently.

The result is more efficient training as the horse progresses more rapidly with lower levels of stress and the use of techniques which align more closely with what is known about the learning capabilities and limitations of the horse.

One of the pioneers in developing techniques and training of horses that rely on a more scientific and therefore kind approach is Dr. Andrew McLean, of Australian Equine Behaviour Centre, Melbourne, Australia. Orla has been privileged to have the opportunity to study under Dr. McLean, and has hosted several workshops and clinics on Equine Learning and Training at various locations over the past 3 years. NB: Dr Andrew McLean will give an informal talk in the Ferrycarrig Hotel in Wexford on Thursday 30 Aug 2012.  Contact us for further information (


Orla is currently carrying out a PhD investigating training approaches and behavior problems in the ridden horse and in June 2012 completed an Asoociate Diploma in Equitation Science at the Australian Equine Behaviour Centre

The equine component to the Behaviour Clinic, based at Spruce Lodge Training Facility in Ballyrogan Stud, Co Wicklow consists of seminars, workshops and clinics, where owners can attend with their horse for a day of education on how the horse's mind works and why problems develop.

Content includes:

  • Individual or group lessons with top level riders and trainers
  • Seminars outlining  the latest scientific developments in the area of training horses
  • Individual consultations dealing with problematic behaviours in the handled and ridden horse.