Touch can be classified as any time you physically touch your horse either with your body or with an extension of your body (whip, reins, etc.) While a touching feel is much easier concept to grasp then energy feel it is also very easy to over use. If touch is over used or used incorrectly it may interfere with the overall training. Example: endless yanking your around with rope or reins creates resistance in your horse and proves counterproductive.  Example two: Conflicting touch and energy signals such as telling your horse to slow down while squeezing with your legs this creates confusion and lack of trust.

Touch at is finest should be light, smooth and flowing, very rarely harsh or abrupt. In every way we should strive to always lighten and refine our feel for touch. If we usually push with a pound of pressure we should try to refine our signal until we need to only use an ounce of pressure.

Touch is one of the most sensitive parts of our horse’s existence. Each separate touch means so much and conveys so much. Each time you touch your horse, have an intention behind it. It will confuse your horse less and make you more aware of how you touch your horse. It will also help your energy and touch cues mesh so that you are not giving conflicting orders.

Basic touch cues while riding include: leg cues to move forward and side to side, seat cues to drive the horse forward (also known as forward weight aids), body weight aids for turning, halting through seat or rein use, direct reining, neck reigning, contact. Touch can be used to create positive changes in the horse’s mood and condition. It can also be a powerful tool for trust building or if used improperly breaking trust.