Shaping Plans 101: The Best Training Tool
Updated: Dec 9, 2019
A shaping plan puts to paper exactly what steps you will take to teach a horse a new, wanted behaviour. Taking a few minutes to write a shaping plan can help you achieve better results, faster. It can also help you trouble-shoot, should you run into any problems during training. As you can see in this clip, I usually write no more than ten steps when crafting a shaping plan. While this shaping plan addresses how to teach a horse to accept fly spray, you can use a shaping plan to teach your horse almost anything - from loading in the trailer to executing tempi lead changes. While shaping plans are great for teaching new and wanted behaviours, such as standing for fly spraying, learned fears in horses about specific things or events, such as being fly sprayed, are better addressed by using counter-conditioning and systematic desensitization. Stay tuned for a new video on that topic shortly!