A horse is a mirror image of the rider, as we give the rider more knowledge, that mirror gets clearer. If the rider does not know what to do or how to do something, confidence is lost in both the horse and rider. As the rider gets tools (or exercises), the rider builds more confidence and the horse follows by gaining more confidence. Part of confidence building in both horse and rider is balance, rhythm, and timing. These three elements are extremely important in any horse, but especially in a gaited horse. When a gaited horse looses its balance and rhythm it will become dull and not go forward or be almost a runaway. The easiest way to fix a horse like this is have the rider give a horse a rhythm and the rider be in balance. Every exercise we perform comes back to these basic ideas of balance, rhythm, and timing with confidence.
Another part of my philosophy is the your attitude toward each exercise and your horse. If you over react to the horse, the horse is going to over react to you. Remember the horse is a mirror image of you. Its not how you handle things when they are going right, but how you handle things when they are going wrong. Its about your attitude.