Throwing Head? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 09-23-2010, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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Throwing Head?

My mare throws her head when we're not riding her with the draw reins. We had her teeth checked and it's not them, and it's not her bit. What could be the problem and how could I fix it?
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post #2 of 7 Old 09-23-2010, 03:57 PM
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If it's not her teeth and it's not her bit, then the only other option is how she is being ridden or trained. Try riding her on the buckle for a while and see if the head-tossing stays the same or gets better. If it gets better, then that tells me that she was introduced to contact either improperly or too quickly and needs to be started over as if she had never been ridden on contact.
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post #3 of 7 Old 09-26-2010, 02:25 PM
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Maybe it is her back/ saddle thats uncomfortable? you can run your hands along her back and see if she shows any signs of pain. Also do you ride with a martingale? That often helps with head throwing

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post #4 of 7 Old 09-28-2010, 06:48 AM
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If you've had her teeth and back checked and all of her tack fits perfectly, look to yourself.
If you have to use draw reins to pull her head down, I'd say there's something seriously wrong in your training. Have a few lessons on an experienced horse that works willingly on the bit when the correct aids are given.
If you're trying to 'sea saw' on her mouth to 'get her head down' (you might not be, but this is the most common 'method' that less experienced riders use to make their horse's head look 'pretty') there's your answer as to why she's tossing her head.

Get some good lessons with a reputable dressage instructor that can correct how you are training the horse.
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post #5 of 7 Old 09-29-2010, 04:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Kayty View Post
Get some good lessons with a reputable dressage instructor that can correct how you are training the horse.
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post #6 of 7 Old 09-29-2010, 05:30 PM
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After you have thoroughly checked everything else, and ruled it out (and that includes all tack fit, chiropractic assessment on her, I agree, look to yourself. Are you grabbing at the bit, when you don't have the draw reins are you trying to pull her head in yourself, what type of bit are you using? I don't know you, and I haven't seen you ride, but to me, draw reins, as well as tie downs, and martingales are just devices generally used for a quick fix, and all they do is make a problem go away until you remove said equipment. I would ride her without any of that stuff, and keep very light contact on her mouth and just push her forward, get her to move under herself properly, and see if that helps. I want to make a point here, because I didn't want to interrupt my flow above, but a note on all that added equipment, in the right hands, and used the right way, I do think that they can be an effective training tool, though I'd prefer not to have to use them myself if it can be avoided, so I'm not trying to say that everyone uses them wrong, or that even used the "right" way that its still just a quick fix, but it should not be used IN PLACE of proper training.
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post #7 of 7 Old 10-06-2010, 01:02 AM
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How tight do you hold the reins? Give your horse her head and only ride in a light contact for short periods during your session.

Just because there isn't anything wrong with your bit doesn't mean that its correct for your horse. If its a single joint snaffle it could be poking the roof of her mouth, or perhaps it puts too much pressure on the tongue or bars. What bit are you riding in?
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