Accidental Lope - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 11-12-2010, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
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Accidental Lope

I'm a beginner rider that is terrified of loping since that's how I broke my arm many years ago. One day I want to be able to lope, on purpose, and not be frightened. My instructor said that sometimes its best to do it by accident. Well, today that happened. I guess Dancer was feeling a little full of himself and when I asked for a jog or trot he decided he wanted to lope. I allowed him to do it for a second. My mom said that I managed to get two or three strides in before I stopped him. I just wanted to share that for once I wasn't terrified and I didn't panic or scream. However, next time I want to be more prepared. Any tips on how to get over this fear? I definitely want/need to work on my balance on the sitting jog before I really try to lope.

Dancer was also a little more of a handful on the trail today but this only improves my riding.
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post #2 of 7 Old 11-12-2010, 09:34 PM
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Way to go!! Good work Maybe learning to lope (we call it canter in Australia) Try it on an old school master, one that is quiet, willing, has experience, and is smooth. maybe try it on the lunge? Sorry i couldnt help more :(

Good luck and good work hope it all comes together for you

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post #3 of 7 Old 11-12-2010, 09:39 PM
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The only way to get over your fear is to do it. Just lsuck it up and pretend your not afraid and pretty soon you won't be.

There's nothing like the Rockies in the springtime... Nothing like the freedom in the air... And there ain't nothing better than draggin calves to the fire and there's nothing like the smell of burning hair. -Brenn Hill
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post #4 of 7 Old 11-12-2010, 09:42 PM
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Hi Puddin,
good for you for recognizing your fear and stretching the boundaries today. Next time just keep the lope three strides beyond when you decided it's time to quit. Also, remember that Dancer does this all the time. I mean he lopes on his own all the time. It's as natural for him as it is for you to run if you need to. He will carry you along just as easy as pie. All you have to do is LET him carry you, trust him!
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post #5 of 7 Old 11-13-2010, 05:19 PM
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Congrats! I know the feeling - my first lope ever as an adult beginner rider was completely on accident. My horse gets a bit excited when we're heading home. The best thing to do, as others have said, is to just practice it to help push through the anxiety you're experiencing. My Dad always says practice doesn't make perfect, it makes permanent :^)
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post #6 of 7 Old 11-14-2010, 07:07 PM
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Just push your limits in baby steps. If your comfortable doing 4 strides of lope, do 5. Since you have the benefit of being on a lunge line, really focus on sitting upright so your lower back stays supple. Most people fall forward when they are nervous which closes the hip angle and makes you bounce. Make like a ballerina and sit deep but tall like someone is pulling your head upward by a string. Before you know it, you'll love loping again.

You just have to see your don't have to like it.
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post #7 of 7 Old 11-14-2010, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by kevinshorses View Post
The only way to get over your fear is to do it. Just lsuck it up and pretend your not afraid and pretty soon you won't be.
I agree with Mr. Kevin.

I had this problem a couple of years ago after taking a bad fall. I tried all of that stuff where you build up to it or whatever, but that did nothing but increase my anxiety.
I eventually got fed up and just went in the round pen one day and loped in it. I did that for a day, and then the next day I was comfortable in our arena. Sooner or later it was as easy as pie and I wasn't scared.
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