Richard Thompson adds to the one-rein stop

Hi Elizabeth,

Richard Thompson in action.

I read your online blog about a one rein stop. It was very close to what I would say.

The only thing that I felt needed to be worked over was the position of the hand being on the thigh. I know Pat Parelli teaches this and so does the John Lyons group.

What Tom (Dorrance), Ray (Hunt), and Buck (Brannaman) taught was the concept of the balance line.

The balance line is the line between your eye and the horse’s eye. If you have the hand on the rein inside of the line, it stops the shoulder.

If the hand on the rein is outside of the human eye to horse’s eye line, it gives the horse permission to move that shoulder forward.

If you place the hand on the thigh it is outside of the balance line. The horse will continue to move in the direction of the hand but not stop for a long time.

If you place your hand in front of the pomel it will stop the horse’s shoulder.

Richard Thompson

A former international professional polo player, trainer of polo ponies and an award-winning farrier, Richard Thompson now travels the world helping people to look at life through the eyes of their horse, explaining the predator versus prey psychology of the horse and how he feels humans can
and must develop trust and respect in their relationships with their horses.
Richard’s strengths lie in his ability to explain equine behaviour and instincts, and his ability to apply this knowledge to high levels of coaching and performance. Horses Richard has trained have played polo under the best players in the world, including Memo Gracida.
Richard coaches at many stables throughout Canada, the U.S. and Europe, including Reitstall Auhof, one of the most successful dressage and show-jumping stables in Austria.
His students range from pleasure riders to Olympic contenders.
Richard says: As I learned to read horses from their point of view, my patience grew. I taught my horses more slowly, and accomplished more with them faster.
The result? My horses performed better!


Richard is currently writing a book about the features of the one-rein stop.


Always wear appropriate safety items of clothing, gloves, shoes and head protection when handling or riding your horse. There is always some risk involved in horse training for both you and the horse. Be sensible and stay within your level of training. This information illustrates the training methods and techniques I and my colleagues use. It is your responsibility to use it wisely. It is not intended to replace personal instruction from a professional instructor. Keep yourself and your horse out of trouble. if you wish to learn more about these methods contact us at:

Video/Sykpe  consultations are now available. Contact me for details.

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