Cantering with No Stirrups??? - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 10 Old 07-23-2011, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Cantering with No Stirrups???

Usually I'm fine with cantering with no stirrups. I can stay balanced with a light seat and a steady leg. I've never had trouble with it until now.

Recently I started riding a different horse. He's great and I'm already in love with him. He has the most amazing canter. It's energetic and a little speedy but very controllable, and when I ride in half-seat it's literally like flying.

Then today during my lesson, my instructor told me to drop my stirrups. I did, and right away I was unbalanced and flopping all over the place. I almost fell off once, and my instructor let me take my stirrups back. I was shocked and embarased. That has never, ever happened to me before. I tried again and the same thing happened.

Why do you think this happened and what can I do to improve my canter with no stirrups? Is it because it's a different horse and I'm not used to his canter, or is it something else??????

EDIT: Oh, and before it comes up, I know I wasn't hugging with my knees or letting my legs flop around when I was using stirrups. It's a bad habit I once had when I was learning to ride and now I always pay super close attention to that.

Last edited by emeraldstar642; 07-23-2011 at 04:41 PM.
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post #2 of 10 Old 07-23-2011, 05:37 PM
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I get your trouble!!! My horse aamir has a beautiful canter and I can too do no irons. But my mom's arab todd is faster in the canter and I had a lot of trouble keeping balance on him. (i learned how to ride better I with my boy) any ways my mentor had me do no stirrups at walk trot before the canter on a lunge line so that she could control the speed of the gaits and I could focus on my balance and legs. My issue of floppy legs is almost under control but at the trot they get a little uncontrolled but better now. So then once I got basically done I rode the horse better (my mom's) and even with the irons. But later/now I have been riding bare back on my guy to get a better feel for my own control. Haven't made it to the canter, i'm a bit nervous about my not falling! But i've fallen before I just don't need to freak my horse out again. I hope this helps you it helped out. But any idea on how to keep a quarter horse in a canter around a ring?
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post #3 of 10 Old 07-23-2011, 06:46 PM
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Originally Posted by emeraldstar642 View Post
Why do you think this happened and what can I do to improve my canter with no stirrups?
Trot without stirrups?
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post #4 of 10 Old 07-23-2011, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Trot without stirrups?
Yeah see that's the wierd thing. I can trot without stirrups on him, even post, just not canter...
It doesn't make sense, I know. But I guess it's just that his trot is super smooth and his canter is, well, not.
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post #5 of 10 Old 07-24-2011, 01:14 AM
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Perhaps better to work on improving the horse's canter since it sounds like it's rough and hard to ride. Some horses kind of "pronk" like a gazelle when they canter. A lot of arabians do this. Very hard to ride . If your horse it cantering all strung out on his forehand , or head stargazing , then he would be hollowed out and that makes it hard to ride a canter.

Would you be able to post a video?
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post #6 of 10 Old 07-24-2011, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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Perhaps better to work on improving the horse's canter since it sounds like it's rough and hard to ride. Some horses kind of "pronk" like a gazelle when they canter. A lot of arabians do this. Very hard to ride . If your horse it cantering all strung out on his forehand , or head stargazing , then he would be hollowed out and that makes it hard to ride a canter.

Would you be able to post a video?
Well I don't have any videos of my riding him, but I might be able to take one during my next lesson. However since I'm missing my next lesson that'll be two weeks from now and this thread will probably be dead by then. Of course if I get the chance I'd definitely post one.

But just to be safe, how would you suggest to work on his canter? Like anything I might be doing wrong first of all, and also anything I should or shouldn't be doing? Or what are good excersices I can do with him? Thanks.
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post #7 of 10 Old 07-25-2011, 03:06 AM
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
Perhaps better to work on improving the horse's canter since it sounds like it's rough and hard to ride. Some horses kind of "pronk" like a gazelle when they canter. A lot of arabians do this. Very hard to ride . If your horse it cantering all strung out on his forehand , or head stargazing , then he would be hollowed out and that makes it hard to ride a canter.

Would you be able to post a video?
Also to improve the canter you need to do transitions!, trust me it works!
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post #8 of 10 Old 07-25-2011, 03:09 AM
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Originally Posted by emeraldstar642 View Post
Usually I'm fine with cantering with no stirrups. I can stay balanced with a light seat and a steady leg. I've never had trouble with it until now.

Recently I started riding a different horse. He's great and I'm already in love with him. He has the most amazing canter. It's energetic and a little speedy but very controllable, and when I ride in half-seat it's literally like flying.

Then today during my lesson, my instructor told me to drop my stirrups. I did, and right away I was unbalanced and flopping all over the place. I almost fell off once, and my instructor let me take my stirrups back. I was shocked and embarased. That has never, ever happened to me before. I tried again and the same thing happened.

Why do you think this happened and what can I do to improve my canter with no stirrups? Is it because it's a different horse and I'm not used to his canter, or is it something else??????

EDIT: Oh, and before it comes up, I know I wasn't hugging with my knees or letting my legs flop around when I was using stirrups. It's a bad habit I once had when I was learning to ride and now I always pay super close attention to that.
Maybe it would help if you sit on your thumb, and make lean back a little more.
Also when you canter you can put up one hand and kinda pretend your cantering, the bigger the canter the more you do in the hand you have up. This really helped when I was riding a big bouncy horse, its a fantastic stragaty!
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post #9 of 10 Old 07-25-2011, 03:31 AM
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Originally Posted by emeraldstar642 View Post
Well I don't have any videos of my riding him, but I might be able to take one during my next lesson. However since I'm missing my next lesson that'll be two weeks from now and this thread will probably be dead by then. Of course if I get the chance I'd definitely post one.

But just to be safe, how would you suggest to work on his canter? Like anything I might be doing wrong first of all, and also anything I should or shouldn't be doing? Or what are good excersices I can do with him? Thanks.

Well, now I wish some of our more experienced trainers could explain how to do that. Maybe better than I can. First of all, having a good canter depends a lot on having a good trot. If you can trot the horse and have a contact on the mouth that has the horse soft and giving in the poll, and you can rate the speed a bit by your seat and posting rythm, then that is good preperation for having some influence at the canter.


As far as anything you are doing wrong, without seeing a video or some photos it's hard to hazard a guess. Maybe you are leaning too far forward, or being too stiff in the pelvis, thus bopping his back a bit? I really cannot tell from just your saying that his canter is hard to ride.

It would be fun to see a video and feel free to start up a new thread in the critique session. If you are worried just remind folks to be nice, though I am sure you can handle it just fine.
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post #10 of 10 Old 07-25-2011, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
Well, now I wish some of our more experienced trainers could explain how to do that. Maybe better than I can. First of all, having a good canter depends a lot on having a good trot. If you can trot the horse and have a contact on the mouth that has the horse soft and giving in the poll, and you can rate the speed a bit by your seat and posting rythm, then that is good preperation for having some influence at the canter.


As far as anything you are doing wrong, without seeing a video or some photos it's hard to hazard a guess. Maybe you are leaning too far forward, or being too stiff in the pelvis, thus bopping his back a bit? I really cannot tell from just your saying that his canter is hard to ride.

It would be fun to see a video and feel free to start up a new thread in the critique session. If you are worried just remind folks to be nice, though I am sure you can handle it just fine.
Like I said, it'll be a while before I get a video, but once I do I will put it up. I'm fine with being critiqued, in fact I'd love to learn how to better improve my riding. But honestly I kind of need to get a video before I can post it...

But thanks anyways.
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