posting issues...

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posting issues...

This is a discussion on posting issues... within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        05-11-2009, 05:07 PM
    Super Moderator
    posting issues...

    I haven't trotted Lacey very much because she has a super springy trot, like you try to sit it and you literally are shoved up and forced to post. But when you start posting on the correct diagonal (and I have major difficultly being on the correct diagonal going to the left, I get it every time on the right though) she starts speeding up and she starts trying to canter and it's really difficult to hold her back. It's not like she's pushing through my hands or getting really heavy on them, she just starts trotting really really fast and I end up having to stop posting/trotting, since I can't sit it yet, to get her back. When I'm on the incorrect diagonal she's much better but I already have a bad habit of being wrong going to the left and I want to break it. She's also a little better to the right, which is the way I'm good at but she is still a handful. I've tried doing stirrup-less work to improve my legs but that just made me totally out of balance and made her worse.

    When this is happening we're not just going straight down the rails either. It happens then but it also happens when we do circles, serpentines, figure-eights, trot poles, all of that, which is even scarier since she starts leaning way into the corner.

    According to my trainer she is just that way because she likes it when we're in sync so it's kinda a "yahoo! Me and Wallaby can take over the world!" sorta thing. But I still don't like it...

    I know I need to work on sitting her trot and I know I can do it, I just need to put a lot more practice in. Sitting her trot is my goal for the month but I'd like to solve this other issue too because I'm sure it's not teaching her anything good when she gets to stop whenever she gets too fast. I would just push her up into a canter but she absolutely loves cantering so it'd be more of a reward.
    I do lunge (just to get her in a working mindset) her before I ride and she's fine then, she does have a pretty big trot in general so she might just be trotting it out but my trainer says she's trying to canter. When she's like that she's fine stopping, she's fine cantering, her ears are pricked forward, she's not throwing her head or anything to indicate anger/displeasure...

    Sorry for the novel... Thanks for reading.
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        05-11-2009, 06:29 PM
    Hmmm...since you sound like you can sit her trot at least for a few good strides, maybe you can put that to use to fix the speeding up problem and get her attention back on you since she sounds like she's running through your aids big time. I have two suggestions.

    1. Half halts. I'm sure you have a pretty good feel for when she's about to speed up. The stride before she's about to take charge, give her a very clear half halt. Sit her trot, stretch up tall, plant your seatbones so you're not following her movement and shut the door on your outside rein. As soon as she comes back to you and responds by slowing down, back to posting trot immediately. No walking. It'll just let her off the hook.

    2. If suggestion #1 is complete mess, and she still doesn't listen, put her into shoulderfore. If you don't already know how to do it, have your trainer teach you. It's done at a sitting trot, but you should only need to do it for a few steps to slow her down before straightening her back out and going back to posting trot. It's only a little more complicated than leg yeilding. I view it as a suppling movement, but it works gangbusters for horses who like to speed off or bolt when you're out trail riding. It kind of puts a 5th leg under them and impedes forward progress.

    Both the above are basically aimed at getting her to listen to you better. You have in your corner the fact that she's an Arabian. Most are very smart and will pick up new concepts quickly. Once she figures out that the speeding up party is over, she should stop trying.
        05-11-2009, 08:36 PM
    I definitely agree with myboypuck, very well explained.

    I think part of your problem is lack of muscle and balance on both of your parts. Her speeding up could be because she is thrown off balance, and it's easier to run off than to slow down and use herself (that's what my horse thinks too haha). In addition to half halts and shoulderfore, before the problem presents itself, I think doing a bunch of transitions both within and out of gaits will help engage muscles and make sure she's always listening to you
        05-11-2009, 10:23 PM
    Super Moderator
    3days3ways: So you think something like doing a serpentine (just to keep her thinking because she gets bored easily) and switching up the gait a lot would help? Like for instance: 2 strides of walk, then 2 trot strides then 2 walk strides etc... Now that you mention it, that'd probably be really good for me to also work on sitting her trot. Brilliant! =D

    Myboypuck: Do you think you could try explaining the shoulderfore? Or maybe a good youtube video? My trainer is more of a western kinda trainer so I have little hope that she would know what that was. =P

    Thank you!
        05-12-2009, 09:06 PM
    Make sure you are sitting back and balanced. Make sure your legs are quiet and not kicking or pushing her.
        05-12-2009, 10:26 PM
    The Art of Classical Riding--The Shoulder-in

    Here's an article explaining shoulder-in. It's a litte more bend than shoulderfore, but the basics are similar.

    I recently went to a 4 day horse event involving clinics from various instructors. Being that I'm a knowledge junkie, I went to every clinic I could squeeze in. What I got from most of them was that horses need a varied routine to keep their attention, particulary the smart ones who learn things quickly. As soon as I got home from it, I saddled up and proceeded to change gait, speed of gait, or movement every 6 strides. I was working my butt off at first just trying to keep up with what to do for the next 6 strides, but I was blown away by how light and attentive my horse became within the very first few minutes. Bottom line is, if you're horse isn't doing what you want, change the question and ask for something different. Once she answers that one, ask another. I think if you vary things up with her, you'll be pleasantly surprised.

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