Since my previous post, I have gotten a few emails asking "What is a foundation to you?"
I feel a basic foundation is training in everything most horses need to know how to do: starting, stopping, turning, transitions, loading, clipping, washing, tying, side passing, standing for grooming, mounting and farrier work, and carrying people, packs, jackets, etc. I would say that these are things that if you sent your colt to a trainer, you should have at the end of 90-days.
A solid foundation would be a bit more, say through the colt's first year. Where you do all of that plus the basics of riding in a group, trail obstacles, shows, a few clinics. The horse is learning collection and to carry themselves with a rider comfortably in many environments.
Without a proper foundation, your horse won't progress to his true potential and be able to maintain performance-whether it's on the trail or in the arena.