Help with Canter.. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 09-30-2013, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: georgia
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Help with Canter..

Hello all, I need help sitting my horses canter. I can sit a canter really good but my horse's is like riding a spring when collected. Yes, i collected on purpose, we are working with dressage here. But she has so much going on in the canter, its like you have more time in the air then on the ground. kinda like a rabbit I just have a hard time sitting it because its very springy. Help? Tips?
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post #2 of 7 Old 09-30-2013, 10:45 PM
Join Date: Feb 2013
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Gotta love that canter! This may sound obvious, but is she really driving forward? I know when my mare starts to get lazy in her canter, its gets jarring and very hard to sit. I find that half-halts really help smooth things out-they just get the horse back together, collected, and under you again. If your horse "runs" in the canter, they're a god send for that as well. Its tough when you feel like you're getting bounced around like crazy, but remember to relax. Tension in your own body will translate to your horse and get them tense too, which will make the canter feel more jolting. Make sure you're sitting upright, and not leaning back into a "water skiing " position as you keep your seat active and maintaining the motion of the canter.

Did I mention half-halts ? Based off of my own experience, when the canter is hard to sit, its because my mare is too slow, she's 'running', or she's stiff in the back (something she is prone too)

I've spent so much time learning to sit Raisin's canter and its still not where i'd like it to be, so I can say don't give up hope! It will happen :)
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post #3 of 7 Old 10-01-2013, 12:05 AM Thread Starter
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Her canter is like a spring going forward or being lazy. Although she is most definitely not lazy. I give lots of half halts, and it is smooth, but its hard to sit to. Like if I sat and didn't know how to I would fly in the air when she gets to the suspension time. It's hard to explain because ive never had another horse with such a unique canter. Ummm, its kinda like this--> Lets say a normal canter, with the horse going strictly forward or straight. Her canter is not just straight it have upward movement, almost like when climbing a hill on flat ground:) kinda. I tried my best to explain:/ I hope it helped???
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post #4 of 7 Old 10-01-2013, 12:54 AM
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When you are sitting the canter, your hips are moving in a scooping motion; you're loosening your lower back to move with the horse, but also using your core to remain stable. When the stride is looong, your scoops are longer and flatter, as if you're drawing a long oval in the air with the motion of your hips. When the stride shortens and the horse has more suspension, that oval becomes more of a little circle (shorter scoop that scoops up higher). Try to sit your horse's rhythm by thinking about scooping smaller and taller when you're in a collected canter. :) Engage your core and thighs to keep yourself in the saddle. I hope this makes sense!
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Last edited by existentialpony; 10-01-2013 at 12:58 AM.
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post #5 of 7 Old 10-01-2013, 03:15 AM
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I'd honestly drive her more forward. It sounds like she's kind of hopping instead of reaching/stepping.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #6 of 7 Old 10-01-2013, 05:52 AM
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Sit deep, relax, and send her forward on the long side.

Horses that 'collect' and over spring themselves do it to avoid contact or pain.

Is she reaching in to the contact, or tucking herself under?

Check back and saddle too.

Sometimes dressage horses get so used to seeing the same four walls they need to be reminded to stretch out and go for it. Try going on the trails, find a nice area and ask for the power ;)
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post #7 of 7 Old 10-01-2013, 09:04 AM
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It might be helpful for you to have someone video you riding the canter. It's so hard to tell when you are on her, exactly what is going on!
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