S1E4 What it means to never lie to your horse, and helping them find their potential, with Chris Dawson (NRCHA top 5 rider)

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Chris Dawson is an incredible horseman who, has a special talent for communicating with his horse, and currently sits top five in the NRCHA. In this episode he talks about how to not lie to your horse and how it makes everything simpler, horses that taught him to get out of the way, and letting your horse be themself. He also tells us about his superstitions at horse shows, from lucky underwear to eating beef.

Key Takeaways:

  • Keep all your thoughts positive. Don’t think about what could go wrong, but rather visualize exactly what you’re going to do to make it go well. And don’t skip any steps.
  • Stay consistent, keep it simple, and don’t lie to your horse.
  • If something is working, don’t change anything.

Show Notes:

  • [00:43 ] – Growing up training appaloosas, and the horses that did everything
  • [02:39] – Are appaloosas different than quarter horses?
  • [03:16 ] – Showing at the world show for the first time, and picking yourself up (literally) to finish your run
  • [05:58] – Working for Todd Crawford and learning to get the potential out of a horse
  • [08:57] – We all go off pattern eventually
  • [10:50] – Dealing with your nerves and only visualizing the good things
  • [13:19] – Work ‘em like you’re at home and keep it simple
  • [13:35] – Why cowhorse is the epitome of horsemanship
  • [14:47] – Building a relationship with your horse through consistency, and never lying to your horses
  • [16:11] – Chris’ favorite event
  • [16:39] – A great horse, Travelin Jonez who could read a cow all on his own
  • [17:52] – Each horse has it’s own challenges, and mare that loved to show-off
  • [19:01] – What is means to get out of your horse’s way, and a teaching moment about just that
  • [20:33] – Consistency and honesty
  • [20:48] – Learning from a horsewoman who defined the industry
  • [21:43] – Horses as milestones, some of the ones that changed Chris’ career
  • [23:15} – Learning who your horse is and accepting them for who they are
  • [24:09] – Chris’ favorite thing about horses
  • [24:35] – & his training “superpower”. Ignoring the score and helping your horse be the best they can be
  • [24:47] – Great advice from John Slack
  • [26:11] – Horse show superstitions
  • [28:01] – Don’t change something that works
  • [28:21] – Self awareness. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses

Learn more about Chris and Dawson Performance Horses on their website and Facebook.

About the Author, Kaitlyn Hurst

About Kaitlyn

Marketer by profession. Horsewoman at heart.

"I grew up riding, breeding and competing on American Quarter Horses in reining and reined cow horse. I believe that all successes are the result of a partnership between the horse, rider and their mentors.

Finding The Feel is a passion project combining both of my worlds"

1 Comment

  1. Bill Lewis on 07/15/2018 at 6:00 AM

    Chris Dawson speaks the truth. He’s a fine individual and a great horseman. Chris and his wife Sarah Dawson have created an impressive horse training program with many admirers through hard work, dedication, and talent.

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