I built an obstacle course and one of the obstacles was titled “StandFast” (after a worship team!). I adopted a Christian theme because our relationship with horses is similar to our relationship with God. The following aspects are contained within a life-long journey with Christ:
- Trust the Master
- Don’t be Fearful
- Be Patient with the lessons
- Follow Commands
These obstacles help prepare horses for trail riding, as they walk through and over things first, and eventually cross water creeks and pools.
The arena has barrels to navigate around, a bridge to cross, a tarp to walk over, a pedestal to stand on, a tire to stand in, and a curtain to go through.
Because a horse has eyes on the sides of its head and doesn’t have depth perception as we do, these obstacles are very challenging. To a horse, the center of the tire may look like a bottomless pit with no solid ground underneath!
I’ve added a different name or scripture reference to each obstacle. However, I didn’t know what to call the pedestal they stand on or the tire they stand in until I was inspired by the name of a Christian worship team called “StandFast”. I thought that was perfect because a horse has to trust me as I ask them to stand fast in the tire or on the pedestal – until I ask them to step away. I painted the round board underneath the tire with that “StandFast” name. Kids I’ve also trained like the bright colors of the barrels and signs, and sometimes the horses seem to respond differently to color.