how to hold on - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 17 Old 01-25-2009, 05:39 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Australia, Queensland
Posts: 1,320
• Horses: 1
how to hold on

ok, well i went horse trekking a few weeks ago and i was put on a horse what kept on bolting with me. Yeah, the person who has never ridden before and is 14 years old gets the bolting horse. Yep, well when the horse bolting at one stage I was gripping onto the saddle to keep from falling while it galloped about 100 metres away before the tour guide person finally caught up, but by this time the horse had halted, it ears layed back. While I was gripping to the saddle I was wondering "Is this the only way to hold on when a horse is bolting?"(and oh my gosh I'm so going to fall off any minute now and aaaarrrrgggghhh) and so here I am asking you guys whether you know the proper way to hold on. It might come in handy in the future or maybe some members on here might like to here some advice.
so what is the proper way to hold on? with your legs, the saddle, your hands? any tips...

Horseriding- The art of keeping a horse between you and the ground.
Tayz is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 17 Old 01-25-2009, 08:47 AM
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Greenville area / SC
Posts: 13,165
• Horses: 3
Having a horse bolt is one scary situation; I've been there a few times and never enjoyed it!

Whatever it takes to hold on is the proper way to do it but what you need to learn is how to prevent it or, at least, how to stop it. Preventing it comes from knowing what to look for - the signs that it's about to happen. You need to be proactive on any horse and especially one that you don't know regardless of what someone told you about the horse ... one of the last things I ever want to hear after a horse has done something is "Wow, he's never done that before!".

The signs I look for are in his ears, are they forward or pinned; the feel of his body (tenseness as an example, bracing against the bit - pulling the reins from your hands); is his tail swishing; is his head high (when it's normally lower). Those are some of the warning signs and I'm sure you'll hear others.

When it seems a bolt is eminent, brace yourself and turn your horse. You need to get his mind on you and not the thought of bolting. Moving him in a circle or just bending him and disengaging his back end will cause him to rethink his intentions.

If a bolt happens anyway, then put your weigh to the back of the saddle, your legs forward and using one rein, try to turn him in a large circle. Pulling both reins back will not stop him. Pulsing the reins may help but a one rein stop is the best way.

It's a very scary thing even for an experienced rider!

I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.

It's not always what you say but what they hear.
iridehorses is offline  
post #3 of 17 Old 01-25-2009, 01:45 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: South Wales
Posts: 1,128
• Horses: 0
If you're on a trekking horse, they're likely to have many bad habits like pulling the reins, shaking their head, being very hard mouthed, and so on. Hopefully they shouldn't bolt, but instead be hard to get past a slow slow walk ...

Can you tell I've had some sucky experiences trekking?

Experienced riders stay on a bolting, rearing or bucking horse by being relaxed, believe it or not. They know how to move with the horse and can stay calm, and therefore stay in the saddle. If you take riding lessons, you will soon learn that the more tense you are, the more you bump and bounce about, but if you relax everything and pretend to be jelly you won't move much at all.

For novices, hold onto the saddle and the mane! The horse has no nerves in its mane so you can pull as hard as you need to, and even if the saddle slips the mane can't. Keep hold of your reins and turn the horse in a circle, because they can't run so fast if they need to balance while turning. Try and relax to make things less bumpy, and don't squeeze hard with your legs because the horse may interpret this as an instruction to go even faster.

If you believe everything you read, better not read.
Japanese Proverb
claireauriga is offline  
post #4 of 17 Old 01-25-2009, 06:23 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Australia, Queensland
Posts: 1,320
• Horses: 1
Yeah the horse I rode was scared of my jumper. The wind was rattling it. I'm proud of myself. I picked up all the signs that it was going to bolt before it did. I suppose that's probaly the only reason I stayed on. All the signs Iridehorses said were there. (except for the tenseness, but it probaly was there too)

Horseriding- The art of keeping a horse between you and the ground.
Tayz is offline  
post #5 of 17 Old 01-26-2009, 10:19 PM
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 79
• Horses: 0
I grip with my knees and calm him down by walking him around in a circle... Your not alone, it IS a scary experience!! (And a bad habit!!)
horseMAD is offline  
post #6 of 17 Old 01-27-2009, 06:54 AM
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 426
• Horses: 0
Bolting can be very scary, but when the horse sences that you are scared, it will only give the horse more reason to be scared so stay calm. When the horse bolts, you want to sit back in the saddle.
horsegirl123 is offline  
post #7 of 17 Old 01-28-2009, 12:16 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: MD
Posts: 13,202
• Horses: 1
That is definitely scary. But I have to agree, a 1-rein stop really works, if you've tried everything else.
My friend's horse bolted very unexpectantly last week, & she pulled her into the rail, with a 1-rein stop. Or else she would've kept going. :O

Ride more, worry less.
PoptartShop is offline  
post #8 of 17 Old 01-28-2009, 03:56 PM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 182
• Horses: 4

that is scary, you did better than me, it has happened to me twice on my own horse, but not prepared for it. Never expected it. My mare wanted to get back to the barn to her buddy. I was not able to hold on and took a pretty hard fall. Had a sore back for days. I am very cautious now and look for signs, like everyone mentioned here. And definetely one rein stop, you should practice though because it is not as easy as you may think. Especially of the horse is not used to having his head/neck bent all the time. Anyhow, good luck for the future.
satrider is offline  
post #9 of 17 Old 01-30-2009, 06:46 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Australia, Queensland
Posts: 1,320
• Horses: 1
Thanks, ouch! :/ how's your back now?? hope it feels better...

Horseriding- The art of keeping a horse between you and the ground.
Tayz is offline  
post #10 of 17 Old 01-30-2009, 08:29 AM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Washington State
Posts: 1,761
• Horses: 2
I agree with much of what everyone here has said. Stay as calm and relaxed as possible. If you are trying to "grip" with your legs, though, I would not suggest using your knees. That only makes your thighs tense up and you'll ping off like a clothespin trying to be forced on something round. Does that make any sense at all? Rather, keep your upper leg relaxed and use your calves to essentially "wrap" around the horse's barrel.

The one rein stop is definitely your best option. If you've got one half of the horse stopped (or turning in a circle), the other half can't go anywhere!
Eolith is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Whats a good breed of beginner pony that can hold older kids Peartree Horse Breeds 17 09-07-2009 08:17 AM
hold your reins? Jr_lover Horse Training 27 02-01-2009 06:10 PM
Republicans don't hold grudges Joshie Jokes and Funnies 2 12-16-2008 07:59 PM
What's the land mass to hold a Pony under 8hh? Drosophila Horse Breeds 1 04-01-2008 07:21 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome