Modern behavior analysts identify punishment as any event that stops behavior. A baby starts to put a hairpin into the electric socket. His mother grabs him and/or slaps his hand away from the socket: this life-threatening behavior has to be interrupted now. The behavior stops. Lots of other things may start—the baby cries, the mother feels bad, and so on—but the hairpin-in-electric-outlet behavior ceases, at least for that moment. That’s what punishment does.
B. F. Skinner was more precise. He defined punishment as what happens when a behavior results in the loss of something desirable—the pleasure of investigating if this object can fit into that hole, a popular pastime with babies—or when the behavior results in the delivery of something undesirable. However, in both cases, while the ongoing behavior stops, there is no predictable outcome in the future. We know that reinforcers strengthen behavior in the future, but a punisher will not result in predictable changes.
For example, will grabbing the baby or smacking his hand, even if his mother’s timing is perfect, guarantee that the baby won’t try sticking things into outlets again? I doubt it. Ask any parent. What really happens is that we pick up small objects, we put covers over the wall outlets, or we move furniture in front of them, and eventually the baby outgrows this particular urge.
This should be so obvious but then I go to something like equine affaire with my horses and watch some idiot shank a stallion 10-15 times while leading it from one barn to another as the thing continues to scream and jump around and generally act almost completely untrained and I realize that wow, there are actually people out there who really, genuinely have no idea how ineffective punishment is even when they’re actively EXPERIENCING the ineffectiveness of their punishments - and who truly believe that there is no other alternative way to teach a horse how to behave. It’s… pretty pathetic, honestly.
Just for the summer - I’m still a student, and classes start next week :) I put off college for 3 years to be a horse trainer in Iceland after high school, so I’m just finishing my degree now. So now I’ll only be able to train 3 days a week, except when I’m on holiday from school of course.Saturday August 30th //
Whenever you don’t want a stallion anymore, lol. If you want them to run free in the mountains, they have to be gelded of course, so the younger the better (like probably 1 year old) - then they get much bigger and stronger because while they are maturing they are climbing and running free without fences until the fall roundup. If you think it’s good enough to BE a stallion, you’d leave it until it turns 4, train it for a while, and then see what you have. Then it would grow up in a stallion field with a herd of other young boys.Saturday August 30th //
He is verrrrrry deep down. I know this because I had to climb in to close his eyes and I broke 3 nails trying to claw my way out before my boyfriend came to help. Anyway, nothing’s getting to him, I promise (also, it’s been a week and no trouble). I believe there are actually regulations for how deep it must be.Saturday August 30th //
I’m not sure how to answer this, I’m sorry! You have to learn how to sit in a way that is neutral and will not interfere with the movements of the gaits, if that’s what you mean. Most people who have only ever ridden trotters end up blocking the horse unintentionally with their bodies and as a result the horses have a hard time balancing in tölt and become pacey or trotty with such riders (or unable to tölt at all). But I think this has more to do with the way most people are taught to ride these days, driving the horse forward and down into the contact (this will ruin tölt). The way to ride Icelandic horses is with a very classical, balanced seat and style, so basically it’s classical dressage + gaits (although not everyone understands this so believe me, plenty of people out there are driving the horses forward into the contact and wondering why the tölt is so difficult to ride). The 5 gaits (or 4 in some cases) are already in the horse, riding them beautifully is another matter.
If someone asked you, how do you school the trot, could you come up with one answer? I think such a topic is much, much too complex for tumblr. How to school any gait is something one could devote a lifetime to studying and perfecting.