The History of Humans-Horses Bonding

The relationship between humans and horses is both simple and complex at the same time. While a large portion of people will never fully understand it, those who have a developed sense of animal welfare will. We have seen several high-profile movies, such as “The Rider” describing this relation as the main theme. The movies emphasized the connection the main characters have with horses and the positive consequences that came as a result. 

These movies carry very strong messages, showing how the relationship with horses may have a huge impact on someone’s mental health, especially if that someone has been dealing with severe problems in life. The connection humans are capable of achieving with horses is so strong and goes beyond an ordinary bond. But the main question is how to achieve one? We have asked the question to sport expert John Pentin, who works as chief editor at

Relationship between two completely opposite species

Humans and horses are two completely different species. One serves as prey, while the other has a “predator” orientation. So, how and when did the two first come across each other to form a bond? According to historians, the inaugural connection between humans and horses occurred in the territory of today’s North Kazakhstan

When they run into horses, people began to use them for three purposes: 

  • In Transportation
  • In Combats
  • As Workers

In these earliest days of interaction, people considered horses merely as tools (slaves) and they looked for ways how to make most of their utilization without caring at all about their needs. However, the appeal for horses as a “workforce” reduced with the rise of modern technologies people began to apply in agriculture and transportation. The rise of technology has probably been the best thing that has happened in terms of the humans-horses relationships. As humans did n not need horses as “workers” anymore, only then did they begin to consider them companions. 

How to bond with a horse? 

Since horses are somewhere in between being wild and domesticated animals, it is very interesting to discuss this theme. If you want to form a connection with a horse, you can’t simply pet it or play with it as you would normally do with a cat or a dog. Instead, you actually need to be very careful when approaching a horse. Misunderstanding between these two species has often caused some serious injuries for people. Horses can react instinctively if you approach them the wrong way. Their size is enough to cause severe injuries which is why you first need to learn how to communicate with a horse before being able to make a proper bond. 

A third language

Many experts in this field agree that humans and horses have a unique way of communicating with each other. It can’t be done either via human or through equine language. Instead, they use a third language based on emotions and touches. It takes a lot of time (even years in some instances) for a human being to achieve a reasonable understanding with a horse. The main goal is to make the two bodies act as a single unit through synchronized moves. 

The cleanest communication between humans and horses is the one that ordinary people are not able to see. It does not include yelling at a horse, or kicking it does not understand a command. Instead, it is all in small touches recognized only by a rider and a horse. For example, this is also what makes the difference between the best performers in both dressage and horse racing with the rest of the playing field in the most popular sporting events.

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