I've recently joined the mounted drill team that will be performing at one of the local rodeos later this year. The horse I'm using however turns from his typically very laid back personality on trail and on the lunge/undersaddle at his home stable to a horse who gets excited to be riding with other horses.
He's settled down a little bit at the last two practices but I'm wondering if giving him time to adjust is all he needs or if a little bit more of a correction should come into play. He's admitted been out of regular work for the last couple months.
Here's what happens/my response:
After a 30 minute trail ride to the arena when he's a dream to ride confidence/energy wise we start to warm up. Nice big long trot until the jitters of being around 7 other horses in a big arena going all over the place wears down. First couple canter departures he condenses himself up and I can feel the burst of energy coming so I typically ask him to walk/trot nicely before asking again. When a buck DOES occur I've always instinctively held firm on the reins to keep my horses head from driving downward for another buck. He will give nice departures after the first couple and there's never ear pinning etc.
The other time this happens is points in our pattern sometimes when we're playing "catch up" and trying to hurry towards the horse in front of us and he seems to feel left behind OR when we're next to another horse and I ask him to pick up the pace. So I'm thinking this is all excitement/needing to get used to regular work again?
I'll admit I'm self concious since another rider has been telling me to kick him forward when he bucks, which doesn't seem right to me. I don't want to start a bronc riding episode. She also says not to pull him back, like I've been doing to ask him to calm down. Half halts have been my friend but I'm second guessing myself now.
Posted via Mobile Device