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Critique me(:

This is a discussion on Critique me(: within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category

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    11-30-2013, 10:57 AM
Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
Nobody is listening to what I'm saying.

Yes they are listening (reading) but do not agree with what you are doing. That is a very very big difference. You just don't want to hear the responses when they do not agree with you. Moral of the story, you asked for critiques, you got them. Slow down, take it easy on your very very young horse and enjoy many many years of running on sound legs. There is still much you can do with her for training that won't be so stressful on her mind and joints. It is hard to wait for such a long time to get to the goal. Running is fun but it isn't worth pushing her hard now so that she is blown and ruined for years to come. Maybe it isn't everyone else that isn't listening.

I hope that you do hang around on this forum. I believe that there are a lot of people here with a ton of experience that you could benefit from. Nothing wrong with making mistakes and learning from them. Just don't KEEP repeating them. Good luck with your horse, she is lovely.
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    12-01-2013, 12:41 AM
I honestly don't think its that bad I'm not sure why people are freaking you about. You said this was the first time you ran her which isn't really that bad. Just keep up with the work off pattern and maybe practice the pattern once a week or even once every two weeks no running just trotting, getting her to move with your leg around the barrel. Maybe for the rating thing trot her past the barrel a couple of times so she doesn't think your going to turn it and have her wait tell you give her the cue to turn (sitting in your saddle) or maybe sit a little later insted of earlier if she's really ratey. Good luck with her she's super pretty
ropinbiker likes this.
    12-01-2013, 12:42 AM
And also guys she ran her horse. So what it was up to her its not your horse she didn't say to kill her about her age. Whats done is done if you don't like it get over it its not like you can go back and stop her from doing that so stop like seriously!
    12-01-2013, 12:01 PM
Originally Posted by meganstormy    
And also guys she ran her horse. So what it was up to her its not your horse she didn't say to kill her about her age. Whats done is done if you don't like it get over it its not like you can go back and stop her from doing that so stop like seriously!
A young horse is on the path to get ruined. Would you rather have a sound barrel horse that had to wait an extra year before running or an unsound barrel horse because you wouldn't wait a year? I had to wait 4 years before even considering putting my horse over a jump. Precautions need to be taken.

Side note: Please use proper punctuation so people have an easier time reading what you are trying to get across. Usually I wouldn't respond to posts I can't understand.

Thank you,
smguidotti, TessaMay and wtwg like this.
    12-02-2013, 04:33 PM
Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
It's not like I was pushing her either, I was letting her go her speed.
Actually, in the speed barrels video you posted, you whipped her AFTER the last barrel. Which is what I would call "pushing" because there was no need to whip her there.

I'm not going to get into the argument of starting a horse too young, as that's already been hashed out. I don't agree with working a 3-year-old that hard (and I don't care how close she is to 4), because I don't work my 4-year-olds that hard either. To each his own.

Proper training will get your horse "freed up" and not turning the barrel too soon .... not whipping her twice to make her go deeper into the pocket.

Can you do bends and counter bends with her? If not, skip the barrels for a while and teach her how to do that. Counter bending away from the barrel is a great exercise to teach them to listen and not anticipate the turn.

Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
Because that show was the first time I've let her run. I didn't think I'd get freaked out on for running her a couple times. That's not going to ruin her.
I just sure hope you have her on a very good joint supplement and routine visits to the lameness vet and chiro. You put the horse at higher risk for injury when they are so young, and you've got to stay on top of it. Especially in the first photo you posted.... look at her back end. That is an EXTREME amount of stress on those immature and unclosed joints. She looks like she's turning that barrel dang nice .... but just because she can, does that mean you should?

Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
It's not like I game her every weekend. She's pretty much a 4 year old. I see MANY barrel racers at futurities running their horses HARD at 3.
So just because "everyone is doing it" then its okay?

Again, I bring up the question of: Just because you can, should you?

A lot of futurity horses need injections (especially in the hocks) at a very young age to deal with all the stress on the joints. Running them when they are young is not easy on their body.

That's fine if you want to run your horse on the barrels when she's 3. But get an honest opinion and stance on it and not simply because: Everyone else runs their horse's at 3 years old. If you are going to make a decision to run her, then own that decision, and have resources to back up your decision (such as she gets monthly vet checks, etc).

Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
I'm not running her. I'm cantering her.
Second photo you posted is not a canter; that's a sprint. Look at her body position. And for that matter, look at YOUR body position. You are pushing her with your body position. If you are truly letting her go her own pace, you should be sitting there like a dead fish.

Again, that's fine if you want to work your horse that hard that young. It's your horse. You can do as you please. But then don't make excuses or sugarcoat things to hide what you are really doing. You are running her; not just cantering. Own up to it.

THIS is cantering the pattern. Nice leisurley lope. Nope, not a perfect pattern and lots that need to be fixed, but it is a slow canter to work on the pattern. THAT is cantering.

Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
Because when she canters she rates down so much I have to push her past, and just my legs don't do the trick. That's why I asked for help on that so I could get her more freed up.
By simply going faster and whipping her past that barrel (to her, a whip on the rump means go faster, whether you believe that means faster or not), you are leaving a hole in her training. Sure, it might work right now, but if she ignores your legs now, what are you going to do when she starts to ignore your whip as well?

Go back to basics. Take her off the pattern and get better body control on her. Nose, neck, shoulders, ribcage, hindquarters.

When you bring her back to the pattern, push her extra deep in the pocket. And also do counter bends AWAY from the turn (so if barrel turn to the right, keep the right bend in her body but ask her to turn left away from the barrel). Then when you circle away from the barrel, her body is still in the correct "frame" to make the turn properly.

Also make sure YOUR timing is perfect. If you so much as think about turning too soon, guess what? Your body is going to match that thought. Do not let your own mind think about turning, until the time is right. I'd much rather have a horse that turns too late, since that's easier to fix than a barrel knocker.

Is there a reason you do not show her in a snaffle? Since you say she works so well in it at home.

In your pictures, it looks like you are using some sort of combination bit.
    12-02-2013, 05:37 PM
Also forgot to add that maybe you should lengthen your stirrups a hole. You look rather "chair-seated" in most of your photos.
    12-02-2013, 05:47 PM
Smh. Some people should just stay away from horses. I refuse to start any horse other then basics and solid ground work until a SOLID 4-41/2 yrs old. Unless you want your horse to be shot by the age 15yrs old I would just slow down.. Youll get much more out of her and a much happier horse.
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    12-02-2013, 05:48 PM
Just be a little bit more patient and teach her some foundation for barrels. WAAAAYYYY too many talented horses get rushed and get sour, if not prematurely injured.
INSTEAD, this winter you could teach her to trot between the barrels and then walk as close as humanely possible around the barrel. Get her to understand that it is isn't the running, its the collection that enables a horse to turn REALLY sharp around the barrel, ending in a straight line to the next one, ditto, then straight to the end of the pattern.
ALSO, teach her to do barrels in BOTH directions. I commented on a Hunter thread about this: If the horse could do this without you, then we'd be training them to run patterns with a doll.
INSTEAD get her to listen to YOU, the rider, and you need to slow down.
Horses will learn a job and be like that dog that WON'T STOP BARKING bc he's learned to do it.
amp23 likes this.
    12-02-2013, 06:21 PM
Originally Posted by Kadymurphy    
Feel free to tear me apart, I don't get offended easily. I'd like all the help I can get! I also have a question, my mare is SO ratey that I have to usually whip her twice right before the barrel, is there any way I could get her more freed up?
Ok, ok, we get that the horse shouldn't be run so young. That's one piece of advice given many times now. Albeit, OP you did say that you don't get offended and you'd like some advice, you are being given advice.

As for freeing her up, I think really working on getting her cues down to a T and really hot off your leg will help with this. Figure eights, serpentines, go all over the arena and make her react to your slightest whisper of a cue whether it be a turn, leg yield, etc. will all aid in your ultimate goal. All of those things can be accomplished and practiced at the walk and jog, though.

Good luck, she's sure a cutie.
amp23 likes this.
    12-02-2013, 06:41 PM
Originally Posted by Corporal    
INSTEAD, this winter you could teach her to trot between the barrels and then walk as close as humanely possible around the barrel. Get her to understand that it is isn't the running, its the collection that enables a horse to turn REALLY sharp around the barrel, ending in a straight line to the next one, ditto, then straight to the end of the pattern.
Walking as close as humanely possible to the barrels does not teach collection and is what you DON'T want to do; especially at slower speeds. They need more room at slower speeds, otherwise when you speed it up, they've got no run to "suck in" to that barrel turn, and you end up losing all your speed.

Either way, not a good idea to walk as humanely close to the barrel as possible during the turn.

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