4 yr old OTTB, noodle legs, & my suicide mission - Page 2
 
 

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4 yr old OTTB, noodle legs, & my suicide mission

This is a discussion on 4 yr old OTTB, noodle legs, & my suicide mission within the Horse Riding Critique forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        04-14-2013, 11:25 AM
      #11
    Yearling
    By your initial post, I half expected to see a horse running around with his head in the air, jaw locked up on the bit, taking you around the arena for a drag! However, in the canter video, while I see an unbalanced horse, I don't see a horse that is a hot mess with his canter! As a matter of fact, he is going around pretty quiet for a 4 year old OTTB. Did you get him from Sarah? Is she helping you with him?
         
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        04-14-2013, 05:07 PM
      #12
    Weanling
    Preciouspony, I rewatched the third video yesterday and saw it a few more times. Thanks for the video.

    Oxer, yes I did and yes she is! That's why he looks so good, because of his two week bootcamp! ;)
         
        04-14-2013, 09:03 PM
      #13
    Yearling
    Well congratulations! I am anxious to see his progress!
         
        04-14-2013, 11:58 PM
      #14
    Weanling
    Thank you, Oxer!

    Okay, so I think I figured it out (or maybe something completely different.... but a success none the less!).

    When I ask him for his head, and he gives it to me, I "give" back too much (PreciousPony, where you said I put my hands forward, loose my shoulders, and lean forward). Today while trying to fix my elbows (don't think I ever 100% accomplished that) I realized what I was doing and allowing him to give me his head but hang on my hands in the process and not be completely soft in his mouth. So, for our whole ride we worked on him giving me his head while I remained constant (i.e. Not over-giving back, but just softening), and then him holding his own head in frame while not hanging on my hands a little, but still with contact. We got it quite a few times, but couldn't keep it for long periods of the ride. I can definitely tell the difference, and this will be our homework for the week (along with my elbows again, but I think once I fix the contact problem the elbow problem will be easier).

    Does this sound like what you thought I was doing, PreciousPony?
         
        04-15-2013, 11:07 AM
      #15
    Foal
    Well from your description it sounds like you're on the right track! You should *always* have some contact with your horses mouth when working on developing a frame. You should soften instead of completely giving away your contact, while keeping your upper body tall. It might be harder for your horse because he's used to just putting his head down and then getting to pull himself forward by his front end alone. By keeping contact, you're keeping him more engaged, therefore making him work harder. Just make sure you keep him pushing him forward while you maintain contact, otherwise he'll stop using his hind end.
         
        04-15-2013, 11:35 PM
      #16
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PreciousPony    
    Well from your description it sounds like you're on the right track! You should *always* have some contact with your horses mouth when working on developing a frame. You should soften instead of completely giving away your contact, while keeping your upper body tall. It might be harder for your horse because he's used to just putting his head down and then getting to pull himself forward by his front end alone. By keeping contact, you're keeping him more engaged, therefore making him work harder. Just make sure you keep him pushing him forward while you maintain contact, otherwise he'll stop using his hind end.
    Yup, I think that's definitely it. We worked on that again today and after he was ready to listen (thank you cold and windy weather), we got down to business, held the contact longer, and worked on keeping forward. When he was soft and I was not over-giving, I was able to pull my elbows back a little because he wasn't hanging on my hands. I will have to try to get another video of that. Tomorrow we will do the same, but trot poles are also on our agenda! Thanks for pointing that out.

    Not to be a pest, but anybody else? :)
         
        04-22-2013, 01:05 AM
      #17
    Weanling
    Bump? I am sure that is probably not all we need to work on!
         
        04-23-2013, 01:19 AM
      #18
    Weanling
    Over 660 views and only 4 critiques?
         
        04-24-2013, 03:50 PM
      #19
    Trained
    The reason the horse is not round is that he is not in front of your leg.

    This is really evident in the first walk video. He is doing a death march. Put your heel down, press your stomach towards your hands, rest your hands that they do not interfere and then put a small aid on. If he does not respond, give him a kick and if that doesn't work, then hellfire needs to rain down (some horses this is a tap with a whip, others it requires a bit more force - but however you can do it to make clear to the horse that he does not ignore the leg). Once the horse responds (at whichever level) put your heel down again and reward him. Then, bring him back to walk and repeat as necessary.

    Secondly, what is the purpose of trotting around aimlessly for 4:30? And then cantering for over 7:00? Ride with purpose, do transitions and make a difference in the horse's way of going. Transitions are how you are going to get this horse in front of the leg and eventually round. Doing the same thing as above and take your leg off when you are at "cruising speed". Right now you are nagging him constantly and making him ignore you. Press your heels down, press your stomach and pelvis forward and leave your hands resting down. When the horse is forward and in front of you leg, a quiet hand will be enough to get him round.

    Also - now is the time to introduce a turn on the forehand. Take them one step at a time and don't over face him with more than a few steps to begin with, eventually add a half turn and eventually a leg yield.

    Good luck!
         
        04-24-2013, 06:14 PM
      #20
    Weanling
    Thank you VERY much, Anebel! That is exactly what I was looking for.
    We will definitely be working on loads of transitions and getting/keeping him in front of my leg, as you described.

    I also think I need to invest in a dressage saddle so I can be more with him rather than perched on top. I think it will make matters better for my legs too. I was told it isn't smart to ride a baby in a dressage saddle because then you are screwed if they do something stupid (...?...), but if I am going to fall it is because of my numbing legs, not the type of saddle I am in. Can't say I agree 100% with what I was told about the saddle, but he is pretty sane for a baby anyways so I am not worried.

    Will be riding today so will work on your recommendations!

    We have been working a lot in the trot, but not tons in the canter. What do you recommend to do to help him with his canter to be more balanced and relaxed? He still anticipates the canter after already cantering so we can not do canter transitions without trotting for about a minute in between to get his mind completely off the idea.
         

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