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inexperienced rider vs unresponsive horse

This is a discussion on inexperienced rider vs unresponsive horse within the Horse Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • I feel so inexperienced

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    08-17-2012, 05:56 AM
  #21
Foal
ThursdayNext,

Wow! You raise many good points. That's a lot to wrap my brain around! Had I known all of this before I made the decision to learn how to ride, I would have probably never gone into it Nevermind, my lesson is tomorrow and I am excited to see and try in action everything you told me. The barn staff did show me that trick you described--6 times already. But it comes so easy to them! And it seems that when I try to do it, somehow Mercedes acts up more. She has me figured out alright!
     
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    08-17-2012, 07:41 AM
  #22
Foal
Can't wait to hear how it goes tomorrow Pendolino! It's amazing how much there is to remember whenever we get on a horse, isn't it! ;) Someday it will all be second nature to us.... there are some great tips here, and I'm glad you asked all your questions, some of which I had in my head to ask, and now have answers!
Quote-"The barn staff did show me that trick you described--6 times already. But it comes so easy to them! And it seems that when I try to do it, somehow Mercedes acts up more. She has me figured out alright!" This comment of yours rings true with a lot of us beginners to I think! It reminds me of how every time Suzie is jogging beautifully, and I feel like I am doing everything right, I'll tell her "Good girl Suzie!", in a happy voice, and she immediately goes back to a walk, lol! I think she thinks, good I am doing what she wants, now I can stop! :) My instructor says it has something to do with my happy voice when I say it, so now I just give her a pat on the neck instead!

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    08-17-2012, 07:52 AM
  #23
Yearling
Aaaah...it's like saying if we'd known how difficult it would be to have children, we wouldn't have gone into it. Probably true, but also beside the point. Well, I did know how difficult it would be to have kids, and so I didn't go into it, and I was right about all of that...but the point is, if you want kids, or you want to be a rider, finding out that it's going to be difficult doesn't usually change that desire.

IMO, the most valuable thing a person can bring to a relationship with a horse is patience. Patience with yourself, patience with the horse, patience with the process. It's a journey. There isn't some point where you will "know" how to ride. There will always be things to learn, and people to learn from. There isn't some point where the horse will *always* behave and do exactly what you want...any more than there is a point where your kid will "always" behave and do exactly what you want. The key is to develop a relationship and to do training (and you will see people say it here: every time you interact with a horse, you are training it, and that is oh-so-very-true), and to do the kind of training that results in a horse that will mostly behave and usually do exactly what you want.

You're getting trained too, and what you'll find is that at those times when the horse isn't behaving, you have a bigger and bigger toolbox of responses you can provide, and the bigger that toolbox is, the more likely it is to hold a tool that works.

Another valuable trait a rider can cultivate is the beginner mentality. If you always think of yourself as a beginner, you won't develop expectations about where you "ought" to be in terms of progress, and it's less likely - if you don't have those mental benchmarks - that you'll get frustrated and lose patience with yourself, the horse, or the process.

Keep trying with the bridle trick. It will work, eventually. Stick with it, and this time next year, someone is going to resurrect this then-ancient post and give you some advice, and you're going to get the notification and think "Huh? I had problems with tacking up the bridle? Oh, yeah, I guess I did..." Is also true about the rest of the stuff that is causing your disturbance right now. A year from now, you will NOT be having THESE issues. They will be totally gone...and replaced with some new issues. Can't get the horse into a trot now? By next year, you'll be on a horse that wants to trot too much, or a horse that doesn't bend, or a horse that has been refusing jumps, etc etc etc. It's a process - got to let it unfold. And be patient with yourself.
     
    08-17-2012, 07:56 AM
  #24
Foal
Chance59,

Really? Suzie does that? Mercedes does the exact same thing See, this is why I love this forum! I pick up so many useful little things. Good, so now I will just pat her. I feel like I am too verbal around her anyway--reciting the steps out loud helps me perform them, but maybe it's confusing the horse.
     
    08-17-2012, 12:27 PM
  #25
Yearling
Oh, yeah, all the horses are like that. You say "Good horse!" and they hear "You can stop now." They'll start doing it when you pat them too, for the same reason. The trick is to put a leg on at the same time you're praising them, so then they know it does not mean "OK to stop now!"
     
    08-17-2012, 12:36 PM
  #26
Weanling
If the mare was difficult with you and the other rider it could be that she has been used as a lesson horse for years, does not enjoy her given job and she has become dead to leg and mouth. I had ridden a couple of lesson horses when I first got my horse and wow to get those horses to go I needed legs of steel and had to continually force. It's nice to ride a safe horse but also one who is willing. Keep riding but don't ride the same horse all the time.
     
    08-17-2012, 02:30 PM
  #27
Foal
Just commenting about your ill first horse show experience...
That's nothing compared to my first show!

I got thrown in front of a HUGE crowd and got dq'd from that class, THAT is embarrassment. Plus my horse was being an idiot in the flat classes...
Be thankful it wasn't as bad as that. ^^

And addressing the whole lesson issue, everyone, even the pros need one on one attention. If you feel that the way they teach is not up to standard, then by all means find a different trainer!

Best of luck. ;)
     
    08-17-2012, 04:03 PM
  #28
Foal
I had the same issue with a horse I was riding. It seemed everything I did went in one ear and out the other. I solved the problem by getting to know the horse and spending time with him outside riding so he would trust me. Also horse tend to test new riders. So him you are the boss and kn what you are doing.
     
    08-18-2012, 01:07 PM
  #29
Foal
Hi! I have been busy, so I could not reply properly to your posts. I had my class today, and I just wanted to update you. I got to ride a different mare today, a quarter horse mix named Shay. She is our stable's celebrity of sorts, acted in a minor movie. Anyway, I got to pick her hooves without any major problem and put the bridle on properly (with a little help). As for trotting, same old, same old. At least now I know it's me, or my thighs, to be exact. I managed to get her into a decent trot after I was shown how to whack her with a crop properly. So at least it was not a complete waste of the class. And now I know what to focus on. I will keep coming here to pick your brains, of course
     
    08-27-2012, 12:38 AM
  #30
Weanling
Horses can sense who they can do evasions with. They are forever paying attention to how you move, approach, release pressure, and communicate with them, among other things like body language. I think its just part of the language of horses. As you become more competent you will notice things will feel easier.
As an example when I was a novice trying to catch or halter a lesson horse...if I approached this horse, it would stand still to be haltered. But if I wasn't ready soon after approaching it or was fumbliing with the halter, it would start to walk away. As if saying, I gave you your chance. See ya!
     

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