Weak legs or being ignored? - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 4 Old 07-15-2011, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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Weak legs or being ignored?

I could use some advice or opinions...

I have a really hard time getting my lesson horse to work and I can't tell if it's because I have a weak leg or if it's because she's ignoring me. I normally need a crop to get anywhere with her, and on the days I don't use one, I have to kick her to get into a half-hearted trot then squeeze like hell to keep her in it. By the time she finally is going at a decent pace, my legs feel like jelly.

This alone makes me think it's a problem with my legs just not being what they should be, but at the same time my instructor is always praising me on how "quiet and solid" my legs are when I ride. Can you have weak leg aids and still ride with a "solid" leg?

Any thoughts or advice on how I can improve?

"Don’t be distracted by criticism. Remember the only taste of success some people have is when they take a bite out of you."
-George Morris
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post #2 of 4 Old 07-15-2011, 03:17 PM
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Sounds like a possible respect issue. I had a lease horse that completed ignored me. I mean I kicked the crap out of his sides and he didnt move. His owner used spurs so he was like.. yea this isa walk in the park.

I would take it back to ground work, make sure he focuses on you and respects what your asking of him. And then id make sure to have the crop with you when you ride but don't carry it until he gives you a reason. When he does, show him whose in charge and try again without it.
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post #3 of 4 Old 07-15-2011, 03:32 PM
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Well, the lesson horse is no doubt pretty dull to the leg, as is often true of lesson horses. They get ridden by so many different people and so many different skill levels, they must learn to tune it out somewhat , in order to stay sane.

If you are new to riding or only ride once a week, your leg may be weak. But it's definiely a problem of the hrose ignoring your leg aids.

Don't use spurs, use a crop. Use it and use it big, and get a result.
Be ready for the horse to surge forward, and when he does , don't you dare bop him in the mouth for doing what you asked. Be sure to be prepared for that surge and ride it forward.

Its like this: Leg on lightly , leg on bump, bump !!! Crop ONNNN! And then go forward. Cruise forward, and when he slows down, leg on , and if no response, CROP!
Always give the light cue first, but don't wait too long before putting the crop on briskly. You must make an impression that he will remember so that you don't need to nag constantly.
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post #4 of 4 Old 07-15-2011, 07:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you! Spurs are out of the question anyway - my trainer doesn't allow them unless you're advanced. I'll definitely give that squeeze-bump-whack style a try tomorrow.

After my lesson, my trainer wants to put me on one of their more advanced horses for a little bit to see if it's time to upgrade, so to speak. I've ridden her once before and the difference between leg cues is night and day. I was so giddy after I squeezed and got an immediate response!

"Don’t be distracted by criticism. Remember the only taste of success some people have is when they take a bite out of you."
-George Morris
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