Will the lesson really teach you someting? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 10:22 AM Thread Starter
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Will the lesson really teach you someting?

Here is my question... I started taking jumping lessons in nice barn (I like the instructor and all) because I can't ride my own mares for over a month already. However the horse I use is not round, doesn't come on bit, and has no muscles developed what so ever. Which means no balance and no good transitions either. I keep asking him for more roundness (and he gives it for couple strides from time to time) as well as work on transitions (even though they are as rough as they come).

His owner and lesson riders are mostly kids who let him wonder around with head in air and loose reins and do whatever he wants to do, so the fact of me asking him to actually work really upsets him (to the point he bucked yesterday trying to resist).So my question is will I really learn something on such a horse? I'm not afraid of bucking nor I going to let him do whatever he wants to, but given the fact I ride just once a week I highly doubt he'll develop those muscles. And I don't feel very confident to jump a horse, which doesn't have a balance or muscles for that. Or it's still OK and that's how you learn to jump? I'm fairly inexperienced with lessons, so have no idea if it's a norm.
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post #2 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 01:40 PM
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Any time your knowledge level exceeds what your horse can do, I'd say, no you cannot advance your skills. Are there any other horses you instructor can put you on? I know it sucks. A lot of school horses are used to just going through the motions. It's hard to find good ones. I cannot count how many years I spent on such horses never learning a thing about properly connecting a horse. I ended up 1/2 leasing a better horse just so I could progress in my riding.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #3 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, MBP! That was my fear too (and don't get me wrong, this one is sweatheart, but even my green mares are more advanced already). I actually asked the instructor if I can get a better one and she said there is a 2 level older dressage horse, so she'll ask permission from the owner if I can use her to do the flat. The problem though it still won't teach me jumping though... Oh, well... :)
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post #4 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 02:29 PM
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If I could get on a 2nd level dressage horse, who needs jumping!! You can learn tons on that horse.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #5 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 02:56 PM
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Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck View Post
If I could get on a 2nd level dressage horse, who needs jumping!! You can learn tons on that horse.
I agree. I rode a 3rd level dressage horse for lessons and oh boy did I learn. He's a wonderful sweetheart of a horse but if you do not ask him properly, he just ignores you and keeps right on going, if you have any holes whatsoever he happily points them out (Oooh she has a droopy outside rein, so I can canter sideways! Lookie me... I'm talented! ). But when I accomplish what I was trying for, I KNOW, I got it right. Plus, as an older, been everywhere imaginable and seen everything there is to see horse, he's more than tolerant of me asking incorrectly, bopping him on the head with a whip (Ooopsie! ) and whatever else I managed to do to the poor guy! I can now take everything I learned from him and apply it to my horse.
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post #6 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 03:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck View Post
If I could get on a 2nd level dressage horse, who needs jumping!! You can learn tons on that horse.
Lol! Actually I keep taking lessons with my dressage trainer as well on her client's horse (and oh, boy, that one can go!). I wanted jumping specifically so that's why I started taking extra lesson on top of my dressage lesson. May be I'll just look for some other places around...
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post #7 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Delfina View Post
I agree. I rode a 3rd level dressage horse for lessons and oh boy did I learn. He's a wonderful sweetheart of a horse but if you do not ask him properly, he just ignores you and keeps right on going, if you have any holes whatsoever he happily points them out (Oooh she has a droopy outside rein, so I can canter sideways! Lookie me... I'm talented! ).
Ha! I can totally relate to this. My instructor let me ride her upper level eventer. Unless every body part was in perfect alignment, he would stick his head straight up in the air and walk around in circles. The good ones sure make you work for it!

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #8 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 04:11 PM
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In addition to the viewpoint of what you can expect to learn from this jaded shool horse is the the idea of what is fair to ask of him. Is it fair to ask him to come onto the bit and connect/collect and rebalance himself (i.e. WORK harder) when you are the only one who expects this of him and only once a week? It is unlikely that you can affect any long term improvement on his way of going (which would benefit him ultimately) with only one hour a week. Instead, it may only be a source of irritation for him.
IF you had the opportunity to really ride and retrain him, then riding a horse like this would actually improve the dressage skills that you have now. It would solidify them as you take what you've learned and utilize it to "retrain" a heavy and unbalanced horse.
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post #9 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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Tiny, that's exactly why I started the thread. I will not be able to change him and yes, he'll be POed with me demanding him to work (although I did not over-worked him nor I asked him for more than he can give, I started my own horses from zero so I know the limits). So I'm thinking if it's a waste of money and time for me at this point.
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post #10 of 21 Old 02-14-2011, 04:51 PM
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I know that you would be good for him if you rode him quite regularly.
As far as is it worth it for you. Is he so unbalanced that you cannot jump him at all? I mean you could do a few lessons on him for getting two point down and some of the basics regarding jumping. He might be a babysitter there, and I would need a babysitter for jump lessons at first.
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