Framing - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 05:01 PM Thread Starter
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Framing

I have many things i need to fix with my horse, but framing is pushed to the back, as it is the last of my worries right now. I was wondering how to teach a horse to frame? My horse has no past experience framing, but he does carry his head low and sometimes frames, but has no idea he's doing it. He does it for maybe one or two seconds and I pat him for it

For the future, I was wondering if there are any exercises I can do to help him learn to frame naturally and easily. What are some things I can do while riding that will put him in that position, since he does it so rarely. I usually just rode with very loose reins and give him a pat when I see he begins to frame. My method isn't quite working

I'm not teaching him to frame right now, I tried a few times while schooling him a while ago but gave up as other issues arose.

Once I fix his other problems, this will be a new project to start with him.

Framing isn't something necessary for him, I just think it would be something fun for both of us to do. I do plan to show in 2'6/3' hunters & equitation with him. Framing would be nice to learn

I'm also fully aware of what framing is, I know that I need to my horse to work from behind and focus on the haunches
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post #2 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 05:13 PM
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what is "framing", and what is it used for? is it required for something?
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post #3 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 05:21 PM
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I think she means for the horse to work in frame, on the bit?
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post #4 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
what is "framing", and what is it used for? is it required for something?
Framing is when a horse works from their behind. They carry themselves in a way that, in shows, is considered fancy and will get me further.

Framing is when they lift and round their back, and drop their head to seek the bit. They round their neck and it looks fancy and is something fun to do.
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post #5 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 06:08 PM
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Umm...

I think this is something that an instructor should help you with. It sounds as though your horse is hollow and possibly stiff (or you are) so they aren't really able to make the change to lifting their topline muscles and shifting to behind.

It takes a lot of work. Very proper, consistent work.

It's not just to "look fancy" it serves its purpose.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #6 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
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Umm...

I think this is something that an instructor should help you with. It sounds as though your horse is hollow and possibly stiff (or you are) so they aren't really able to make the change to lifting their topline muscles and shifting to behind.

It takes a lot of work. Very proper, consistent work.

It's not just to "look fancy" it serves its purpose.
It is something to work on with my instructor, yes, but I was wondering about any advice someone would have to encourage the horse to naturally position themselves to frame while I am hacking, without my instructor.

And yes, it's not just to look fancy, in shows its something used to look fancy, since it's not required (in hunters anyway)

And yes, with him, he is quite a downhill horse. Not stiff, but downhill. He frequently shifts weight to front and hind legs at the canter, causing him to cross canter and lose balance. I've worked with him and he's lost that bad habit, so he is able to make that transition, but he didn't do it on command. I'm just not sure how I'd go about encouraging this, but in the right way, when he'd shift weight, it wasn't framing in any sense, just confusion.
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post #7 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Blackzodiac View Post
And yes, it's not just to look fancy, in shows its something used to look fancy, since it's not required (in hunters anyway)

And yes, with him, he is quite a downhill horse. Not stiff, but downhill. He frequently shifts weight to front and hind legs at the canter, causing him to cross canter and lose balance. I've worked with him and he's lost that bad habit, so he is able to make that transition, but he didn't do it on command. I'm just not sure how I'd go about encouraging this, but in the right way, when he'd shift weight, it wasn't framing in any sense, just confusion.
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Any competitive horse in any discipline has obtained a degree of collection. It's not just to "look fancy", it's what should be worked towards throughout your training program. Collection is most certainly outlined in the standards for Hunters, though I doubt it comes out and calls it "framing".

Collection is obtained by riding from the legs to the hands.
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post #8 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackzodiac View Post
It is something to work on with my instructor, yes, but I was wondering about any advice someone would have to encourage the horse to naturally position themselves to frame while I am hacking, without my instructor.

And yes, it's not just to look fancy, in shows its something used to look fancy, since it's not required (in hunters anyway)

And yes, with him, he is quite a downhill horse. Not stiff, but downhill. He frequently shifts weight to front and hind legs at the canter, causing him to cross canter and lose balance. I've worked with him and he's lost that bad habit, so he is able to make that transition, but he didn't do it on command. I'm just not sure how I'd go about encouraging this, but in the right way, when he'd shift weight, it wasn't framing in any sense, just confusion.
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Lots and lots of leg, support with the outside rein, and gently allowing the horse to come into your hands without bracing against them.

If your horse is bracing, then you need to do some flexion exercises starting at halt and then doing them in walk, trot, canter.

A horse is an athlete so they need to work out and will be affected by any blocks in their body (which is seen as stiffness or bracing) so until they are working through those blocks, they cannot naturally carry themselves nor can they carry you.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #9 of 10 Old 06-27-2013, 09:16 PM
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We don't need to debate what OP is asking for or why she wants to achieve a horse that is on the bit. If she just wants to look fancy, and is willing to put in the work to get there then by all means, that's pretty awesome. So let's try to lend a hand?

OP, if your horse is quite downhill (do you have a picture, to see what we're working with?) it might be harder for you to achieve exactly what you want than it would be on a horse with stellar conformation. I think you need to work on suppleness and getting your horse using its body as best it can. I've started really working with getting Jackson on the bit and accepting contact, so I'll outline an exercise I've been working on...

You need to have control of your horses body, that means you need to be able to leg yield off of boy legs and push your horses shoulder both to the inside and to the outside. We work on a circle, really focusing on the correct amount of bend and keeping that bend consistent. First at the walk and down through halt keep the bend at the halt and through your transitions both up and down (walk, halt, walk, trot, etc.) work on pushing your horses shoulder out and getting the correct bend, and then IN to bend to the outside. At the same time using a 'pressure and release' method to start asking for your horses head, ensuring you keep your leg on and to keep your horses impulsion forward.
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post #10 of 10 Old 06-28-2013, 06:07 PM
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What you need and most likely do not have is proper bend through your horse's body. Forget about the head and work the shoulders and hind end parts as needed. When you first warm up, pay attention to where your horse feels stiff. Once you have done a warm up W/T/C, go back to walk and work on his stiff parts. If you do not already know how to leg yield, shoulder-fore and haunches-in. learn them. Each of the three work a different part of the horse and supple a specific area.

Leg yield helps with a horse who over bends at the neck. If you incorporate leg yield into riding square corners, you will find your horse on the aids very quickly. Do this at the walk. Be sure to follow your horse's motion and not restrict his head. This exercise is about body, not neck and head.

Shoulder-fore moves the front legs of the horse and creates a bend and inside leg to outside rein connection. This one needs little explaining. Have someone teach it to you. Once you feel it, you will understand what it does.

Haunches-in controls the hind end. This also creates bend and inside leg to outside rein connection, just from the rear instead of the front legs. Same as shouder-fore, just learn it and enjoy the results once you see what it does.

I use all 3 of these to varied degrees each time I do flat work. They are great for "unlocking" your horse's parts. They combine to supple the horse in it's entirety and you end up with a very nice moving horse that it also much more pleasant to ride.
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