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half halt

This is a discussion on half halt within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Weight in elbows horse riding
  • Tug rein push with leg

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    07-13-2012, 03:58 AM
So inside leg squeeze outside rein squeeze, when the inside leg is off the ground?:)
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    07-16-2012, 11:21 PM
The half halt should not be ridden through the rein. It should be ridden through the rider's seat.
It is not intended to slow the horse down, when ridden and execute correctly. It's purpose is to rebalance the horse, by putting more weight on the hind legs, and therefore activating the hind legs.
To explain how to ride a half halt would take hours, days in fact, as there are so many versions on when to apply the aid, which aid should come first etc.
I ride half halts first with seat, then leg, then hand - the rein aid is merely a slight closure of the hand to contain the energy I have created in the hind legs, through the seat and leg aids. Definitely not a pull back on the rein. I also use both reins evenly to do this.
In training, rather than a test situation (dressage), I will apply the half halt, and as soon as I feel the hind legs activate and the forehand lighten, I ask for some extra flexion, or counter flexion, to test the connection to my rein. If your half halt was effective, there should be no resistance when asking for increased flexion.

Half halts are quite a delicate process and as you develop as a rider you find different and more effective ways of riding them. Some riders suggest riding the half halt through your lower leg, others say half halt at the base of your neck, ect. As you can see, its more complicated than just tugging on one rein to slow down!!
gypsygirl and heymckate like this.
    07-17-2012, 12:03 AM
It really bothers me when people say 'half halt with the outside rein' what ?! You mean 'tug on the outside rein'........
    07-17-2012, 08:20 AM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by jolie1234    
so inside leg squeeze outside rein squeeze, when the inside leg is off the ground?:)
That is how I do it when I am turning to get my horse to bend better and step under herself.
    07-17-2012, 08:43 AM
I think Spyder had a thread all about half halts. I'll have to look for it.
    07-17-2012, 08:49 AM
Found it:

The mysterious half halt, causes and effects.
    07-18-2012, 04:33 PM
Half halts:

Start by trotting and asking for a halt. Do this by stopping your hips. Planting elbows on your waist and pushing down (NOT forward) with BOTH stirrups. I like to exhale at the same time which, besides being a verbal cue for the horse, also makes your body "heavier" since you no longer have as much air in your lungs. If that doesn't work add in a whoa - object is trot to halt with ZERO walk steps.

Once that's good make every other transition a trot HH where at the last second as horse is stepping underneath itself with it's rear legs the rider allows their hips to move and the elbows to come forward about 1/2 an inch (think of it as softening your elbows). Horse should continue trotting after rocking back on it's butt during the HH. If that doesn't work go back to full halts and work on your timing - it MUST be correct - horse MUST be stepping underneath itself with rear legs to lift front end and stop falling on its forehand.
    07-21-2012, 08:53 PM
-Put weight down into your heels
-Pull back reins
-Squeeze calfs
-Sit deep into saddle
    07-21-2012, 09:08 PM
Please don't pull back on the reins :/
Pulling the reins, pushes the hind legs straight out behind - entirely contradicting the point of half halting in the first place.

aids, half halt, riding

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