My Hot Tamale Locomotive on the pattern - Page 3

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My Hot Tamale Locomotive on the pattern

This is a discussion on My Hot Tamale Locomotive on the pattern within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category

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    06-20-2013, 04:25 PM
I would say that is a safe bet. Just choose one or two things to work on each time so you don't overwhelm Squiggy and irritate her. Some horses are very sensitive to this. You have some great basics down with her just some technicalities to work through. When you teach her a new way to turn she will start to figure out the correct way to turn on her own because it is ultimately the best on her body too. She is a nice mare, you are a good rider, just need a little more time to click and you guys will be kicking some butt!

Good luck. :)
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    06-20-2013, 08:32 PM
Green Broke
Rode today, and worked on getting her hip where it should be - I felt like there was some progress! I'm just having issues with the backside of her second barrel, it feels like she bows out on it, but doesnt bow out on any other barrel.
    06-22-2013, 05:12 PM
Originally Posted by QHriderKE    
Rode today, and worked on getting her hip where it should be - I felt like there was some progress! I'm just having issues with the backside of her second barrel, it feels like she bows out on it, but doesnt bow out on any other barrel.
Progress is always good, even if it is just a small amount! Second barrel can sometimes be tricky, because honestly it is the most complete turn they make so they really have to ALL the way around it in order to make a nice clean turn.

I help a young girl once a week on the pattern, and her horse if fairly new to everything with the pattern. She was having issues at a walk and trot of bowing out at the backside of each barrel, so I set up a pole at the backside where she was having the most bowing out happening and asked the horse everything to stay to the inside of the pole. At first she tried dodging it and wasn't sure what was going on, but once she realized she needed to stay to the inside of it when completing the second barrel she started to figure out how to adjust her body to move how she needed. It was really neat how she basically figured it out on her own after a few slow tries.

Sometimes little things like setting poles, tires or cones where you are having problem areas and asking the horse to stay to inside/outside really helps cue you and your horse as well!

Keep us updated and post some videos!
    06-22-2013, 05:52 PM
Green Broke
She was having a tough day with "responsiveness" today. Every day, its just something different that she seems to have an issue with. :/

    06-22-2013, 06:21 PM
I'm watching and writing things down as I see them, so here we go!

First thing I would do is relax that outside hand. You are bumping her over subconsciusly with it. Keep it steady without pulling her or putting it on her neck, and really emphasize the bend with your inside at this stage. Very soft though, otherwise silly squiggy might get annoyed again. C:

Also, go ahead and bump your inside leg when you get about ten strides off the barrel. This will ask her to bend and support her shoulder, even going slow. Tap tap inside leg, then sit and hold on for the turn. It will help her a lot to emphasize that bend.

She is definitely bracing against you when you were haunch turning in the middle of the ground. I would get her going soft int he bridle, which if I remember right has always been something I've suggested for her. If you wanted, you could do a running or german martingale on loosely for a bit. Did you do this type of work on the ground? I.e. Tying her off to the saddle stirrups, draw reins on the lunge line, etc? Most people don't like doing that but that's because it's almost always done correctly, but it might help her find that softness and acceptance of the bit for awhile.

Another thing you are doing is still being a little fussy with your hands. When you trot up to the second barrel at 1:40ish, She goes to cut the barrel off and your inside hand comes up to move her out. The problem with that, is she may then associate the inside hand with lifting off the barrel and when you have to go to one hand eventually she may bow out instead of snapping in. Keep your inside hand to your hip in a turning position, and put a ton more weight in your outside stirrup and use your inside leg to lift. I mentioned inside leg earlier, and that will greatly help you with that as well.

As you are trotting after that as well, she is still blowing her hip while she is also bracing. Going in at your rate point, stop and push her hip in, then once her hip is clear of the barrel leaving it go ahead and push it in again. Don't be afraid to circle it a few times either, asking nicely for her to soften. I wanna share a pic of Selena, because she's the queen of this exercise, circling the barrel soft and hip in.

Although, I admit, my hand is not where it should be

All in all, remember your outside stirrup, relax your body and breathe her down, and get her to bend and relax and make perfect circles for now without getting too mad and nitpicky...It's hard to find that happy medium but I think you could do it.

She is doing better though, you both look nice.
    06-22-2013, 06:38 PM
Green Broke
Everything today was a fight :/

Every now and then I use a running martengale with her when she has a "Let's fight Kylie" day, like today, I should have used one. She gets real soft and bendy after she tests the martengale once and realizes she needs to smarten up. I just don't want to have to use it ALL the time. :/

I just had a pretty general crappy day with her, lol.

I need a beer.
    06-22-2013, 07:05 PM
Come over and house sit arabians with me (I've been doing that the whole week) suddenly you appreciate your quarter horses a lot more! I thought Selena was crazy, but dang...Cute as all get out, and fun to play with, but suddenly our hot horses don't seem so hot anymore!

You could put her on a german martingale, start out on it medium ring or so, then loosen it out until it barely takes effect to wean her off of it. When I still had Ruger, we did draw reins and then the german until he was weaned off of it as well and it worked good for him. I can understand not wanting to rely on it, so maybe switching german over the running martingale would allow this softening process. Plus, then you have a little "more" should you need it too.
    06-22-2013, 07:42 PM
Green Broke
I getcha.
I think I should just have an alternative schedule for her, if I do the same thing twice in a row, she gets silly, so I think I will start doing a barrel practice day, and then an English day, even if it is a trail ride or just putzing around in the pen with poles, cross rails and tiny jumps
    06-22-2013, 07:52 PM
The both of you are taking positive steps let me start there! Like I said before, even if it is something so slight that you hardly notice, that is a big deal with a horse like Squiggy.

I HIGHLY suggest a German Martingale for her. I really don't like to put tie downs on my barrels horses if I don't have to and so I always put them in a German Martingale when I start them so I don't have to fight with their headset if they get a little strong willed.

I admit I wasn't really watching you this time around, I was really paying attention to Squiggy more and her body language for a slightly different take on her patterning. Every time she raises her head even in the slightest she is bracing against you going around the barrel. Play the video back and watch it if it helps. Honestly I would stick her in a German Martingale and stay off the barrels for a couple days and REALLY focus on circles and her body position in them.

For instance I would start one day with the martingale adjusted about medium ring or so, and start with a nice big circle and focus on keeping her inside shoulder up, her mid body/rib cage nice and "broken" and her hip to the inside so it isn't swinging around her body. Gradually work your circles smaller and smaller and see how she changes her body position and adjust accordingly. I wouldn't ask for much more than a trot/long trot at this point to really ensure she is getting her body position correct.

Every time she raises her head and braces you on a turn or in the circles I would over exaggerate getting her nose to the inside and shoulder up, even to the point of asking her to move her entire shoulders out a few steps so she knows she can't just grab that bit and brace whenever she pleases.

I used to have a testy mare that was a lot like Squiggy and I had to try a lot of things until I found what was the best approach for her to really grasp without a huge fight.

While doing all this just really keep your hands down low and soft. When you are going into a turn on a pattern really make sure and ask softly for her nose while putting an inside leg into her to cue her to keep her shoulders up, sit down and make sure you aren't guiding too much with your outside rein in a turn. I would keep and outside leg in her around the majority of the turn though to help her keep her hip inside though so it isn't flinging around her front end and losing her hind end drive.
    06-22-2013, 08:12 PM
Sometimes I have a hard time thinking what I want to tell you and then actually explaining it well lol. Go to Youtube and look up Barrel Racing Tips. Com and look through some of her videos or go to her website. I have found a lot of good tips from there and some very educational videos as well. There are some good videos for hind end exercises and such that don't involve being on a barrel pattern.

I do agree that switching things up with your riding schedule is the best thing for Squiggy in the long run. It might end up taking more time to get the pattern right but it is so much better than having a ticked pony that just doesn't want to listen and learn.
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