Help! Roughest canter on earth...can't sit it! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 30 Old 06-08-2012, 05:45 AM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Help! Roughest canter on earth...can't sit it!

I really need help. I am not nor have ever been a disciplined rider; I grew up with a couple horses my parents had, totally for pleasure riding. Then we had a couple of babies, and inherited a couple more. I've probably ridden 10 different horses in my life, had a few English lessons, but found I am a Western rider at heart...completely for pleasure and to relax.
Haven't had a horse for years, but finally my husband and I got a couple of horses a few weeks ago, and we have so been looking forward to trail riding together. Since I'm now in my 40's, and not a "trained" rider, but very confident and comfortable with horses, I didn't want a "spirited" horse, just one who would relax and ride. I found my dream horse! ...almost!

She is 10yrs old, lets me mount her without moving a step or holding the reins until I TELL her to go, walks nice and relaxed, waits patiently for everything. I am in love with this horse! ...until I asked her to canter. Granted, at first her trot was extremely rough, but within a couple of rides it's now normal. I cannot sit her canter! I tried letting her decide when to canter, following behind my husband and his horse...almost fell off! That was the first time.

Then we thought, okay, lets do it on this path down the middle of a field in a straight line. OMG! I honestly FELT like her legs were going every which way, her head was way up in the air, and her back end felt like it was almost bucking, but not quite. What the heck! I was hanging on for dear life! I tried reining her in a bit, head just came up higher and it got rougher. Then my husband said to let her go, even try to push her faster; I tried once. NEVER AGAIN, LMBO. ... unless someone can tell me that will fix it, anyway... What the heck???

He tried riding her, he said it felt somewhat rough, but he was in no way feeling it was as bad as I do. I have cantered and galloped on quite a few horses in my life, and I don't know what to make of this! Why is she doing it with me? Or was it a coincidence?

I've never NOT been able to sit a horse, even one I had that bucked all the time when annoyed.. and one I got reared for a week when he didn't want to be ridden, until he learned it wouldn't get me off. I am still not the least bit intimidated by her, she doesn't feel like she's doing it with malace or fear.

My husband mentioned one other thing he noticed that I also felt. She tries to "slide" to a stop by planting her back feet, instead of just slowing down; I don't know if that's even connected to this issue.

....HELP!... I LOVE this horse but I've got purple bruises on the insides of my thighs!
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post #2 of 30 Old 06-08-2012, 06:11 AM
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She may need a refresher on cantering. When did she become yours and when was she last cantered BEFORE she became yours?

Horses are athletes so if they haven't cantered for a long while, it won't be as smooth or balanced if they had been cantering properly over a period of time.

Also you need to take into account their conformation too because that can affect if their strides are smooth or jarring.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #3 of 30 Old 06-08-2012, 07:48 AM
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I have same problem with my new horse. She has spent years as a pasture puff, and probably never allowed to get into a canter, Her gait is smooth and she has a nice smooth run walk, but her canter is bouncy as all get out. Not sure what to do. Speed up ? slow down? hope it gets better with better conditioning ?
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post #4 of 30 Old 06-08-2012, 09:13 AM
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It could be any number of things but I think it's just a lack of cantering. It takes different coordination and strength and balance to be able to canter, especially with a person on her back.

Do you know how to lunge? Does she know his to lunge? I'd lunge her or free lunge her so she'd get her bearings without a person on her.
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post #5 of 30 Old 06-08-2012, 09:25 AM
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[QUOTE=milleniumgirl67;1537827]I really need help. I am not nor have ever been a disciplined rider; I grew up with a couple horses my parents had, totally for pleasure riding. Then we had a couple of babies, and inherited a couple more. I've probably ridden 10 different horses in my life, had a few English lessons, but found I am a Western rider at heart...completely for pleasure and to relax.
Haven't had a horse for years, but finally my husband and I got a couple of horses a few weeks ago, and we have so been looking forward to trail riding together. Since I'm now in my 40's, and not a "trained" rider, but very confident and comfortable with horses, I didn't want a "spirited" horse, just one who would relax and ride. I found my dream horse! ...almost!

She is 10yrs old, lets me mount her without moving a step or holding the reins until I TELL her to go, walks nice and relaxed, waits patiently for everything. I am in love with this horse! ...until I asked her to canter. Granted, at first her trot was extremely rough, but within a couple of rides it's now normal. I cannot sit her canter! I tried letting her decide when to canter, following behind my husband and his horse...almost fell off! That was the first time.

Then we thought, okay, lets do it on this path down the middle of a field in a straight line. OMG! I honestly FELT like her legs were going every which way, her head was way up in the air, and her back end felt like it was almost bucking, but not quite. What the heck! I was hanging on for dear life! I tried reining her in a bit, head just came up higher and it got rougher. Then my husband said to let her go, even try to push her faster; I tried once. NEVER AGAIN, LMBO. ... unless someone can tell me that will fix it, anyway... What the heck???

He tried riding her, he said it felt somewhat rough, but he was in no way feeling it was as bad as I do. I have cantered and galloped on quite a few horses in my life, and I don't know what to make of this! Why is she doing it with me? Or was it a coincidence?

I've never NOT been able to sit a horse, even one I had that bucked all the time when annoyed.. and one I got reared for a week when he didn't want to be ridden, until he learned it wouldn't get me off. I am still not the least bit intimidated by her, she doesn't feel like she's doing it with malace or fear.

My husband mentioned one other thing he noticed that I also felt. She tries to "slide" to a stop by planting her back feet, instead of just slowing down; I don't know if that's even connected to this issue.

....HELP!... I LOVE this horse but I've got purple bruises on the insides of my thighs! [/QUOTe

I'm having the same exact problem. When I lunged my mare before I rode her to see how would do, I noticed she went into the canter very powerfully. I was very intimidated by that. I felt lucky though she is so good on trails and her trot is pretty good, I can sit it. Well this weekend she left the trot for the canter and I decided what the heck lets see and it was very hard to do although I did get it done lol

I think I'm going to do some lunging and see if I can get her to relax into it. I'm also thinking about asking a friend to ride her and try and bring her canter into a little less rough place. I'm perfectly fine with trotting buy when you ride with other people they like to canter and she was pretty much wanting to canter when they were so it was frustrating.
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post #6 of 30 Old 06-09-2012, 03:04 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel View Post
She may need a refresher on cantering. When did she become yours and when was she last cantered BEFORE she became yours?

Horses are athletes so if they haven't cantered for a long while, it won't be as smooth or balanced if they had been cantering properly over a period of time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel View Post


Also you need to take into account their conformation too because that can affect if their strides are smooth or jarring.



I just got her at an auction, so I have no idea when she cantered last, or anything about her, really. I talked to the lady, she let me ride her, I walked and trotted, the woman said she loved to take her on trail rides, so I took a chance. She might not have cantered her much at all.

Thank you all for the great advise; I'm going to try lunging her tomorrow, see if I can SEE what she's doing, maybe do that a lot more often to give her the exercise and see if it helps her to practice her canter. It's also been mentioned to me twice that her head being way up in the air might be part of the problem, so I'm going to get a tie down. I will update you! Any more great ideas... let me know!
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post #7 of 30 Old 06-09-2012, 03:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe4d View Post
I have same problem with my new horse. She has spent years as a pasture puff, and probably never allowed to get into a canter, Her gait is smooth and she has a nice smooth run walk, but her canter is bouncy as all get out. Not sure what to do. Speed up ? slow down? hope it gets better with better conditioning ?

maybe work on line. make sure head is tuck. had a horse would lope in front and trot in back and the same time. boy it felt weird..
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post #8 of 30 Old 06-09-2012, 07:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milleniumgirl67 View Post


I just got her at an auction, so I have no idea when she cantered last, or anything about her, really. I talked to the lady, she let me ride her, I walked and trotted, the woman said she loved to take her on trail rides, so I took a chance. She might not have cantered her much at all.

Thank you all for the great advise; I'm going to try lunging her tomorrow, see if I can SEE what she's doing, maybe do that a lot more often to give her the exercise and see if it helps her to practice her canter. It's also been mentioned to me twice that her head being way up in the air might be part of the problem, so I'm going to get a tie down. I will update you! Any more great ideas... let me know!

Yes that's a great idea :) The more she can work on her canter without a person on her back, the more balanced she will be and then you can help her out when she cross-fires or if she is on the wrong lead.

Looking forward to updates You can PM me too if needed

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #9 of 30 Old 06-10-2012, 01:07 AM Thread Starter
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Okay, now I don't know what to think. Was going to lunge her today, but a friend came out and wanted to ride a little bit, and I thought, okay, we'll see what she thinks of her canter. We were in a pasture next to the barn, and she was acting so badly, I ended up getting on to try to get her to ride out, but every time we went away from the barn she acted crazy, shaking her head, trying to buck. Finally caught me off guard and reared on me, a good one, too, and I almost fell off. She was so mellow the last three times we rode, I don't know what I'm going to do. We checked her girth and saddle, nothing going on there. Remember I said I'm getting old and didn't want too spirited of a horse? Uggghhh....
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post #10 of 30 Old 06-10-2012, 01:12 AM
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Sounds like she's VERY barn sour. How long have you had her? Did you correct her behavior, and if so, how did you do it?

Glad you're okay OP :/

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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