Help with horse-pleasure movement
I've had my horse for a year now; he's an 8 year old 15.3 hand Quarter horse gelding. When I bought him the owners had had him for about a year and a half and were working on HUS and jumping with him. Before that he had had WP training. When I went to go inquire about him the owner rode him first, and he looked amazing. Every transition was flawless, his gaits looked smooth and even and very HUS-y. They said that he could do AQHA shows in 30 days, and from what I saw he totally could have. Anyway, he just looked like a pleasure to ride. Then I rode him, and he just wasn't the same. His head was high (despite me trying to get it down) and he was pretty fast. One time I got him to drop his head, but otherwise he wasn't like when she rode him. But I still really liked him because he was smooth, responsive, had a good personality, great ground manners...and I thought that once he got used to me he would go like he did for her, so I bought him. This past spring we had a major breakthrough-he started relaxing when I was riding him, lowering his head, softening to pressure, slowing down, and moving more like a pleasure horse. Ever since then he's been much better since when I got him, but I still feel that he's still not doing what he did for the previous owner. We still have some sticky transitions, and it takes a while during a ride for him to settle down and relax. I really want to do HUS, maybe some WP, with him because I know he has the potential. My question is, why is he still not performing as well for me as he did for her? What am I doing wrong? I'm going to be working with someone soon but I just don't get why I can't get him to move like she did. And when she was riding him she looked very relaxed and so did he-she wasn't pulling or yanking on him at all to go slower or anything. I know this is kinda broad but any ideas?