terrified of cantering my horse - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 04:19 PM Thread Starter
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terrified of cantering my horse

I have had my mare for the past year and a half and have never cantered on her. just the thought of it sickens me.

I can canter/gallop absolutely fine on any other horse with no worries. it's just my mare.

when I test-rode her (when I was looking to buy her,) I asked for a canter and she took off at a full-fledged gallop through the woods and I could not stop her until we ran into an electric fence.

we have done lessons together for most of the time I've had her, however I do not currently have a trainer.
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post #2 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 04:37 PM
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What if you had someone as a ground person? Just to be there and watch you.
If you could have an instructor there to watch and help that would be the best.

Don't go for a full lap, how about just three strides?

I'm sure she knows you better now as well as her surroundings. Good luck!
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post #3 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 04:46 PM
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I have to ask...what made you buy her? That's a pretty big, dangerous problem.
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post #4 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 04:48 PM
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How about letting someone more experienced canter her first? And then help talk you through it.
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post #5 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 04:56 PM
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Does she canter (and stop from the canter) on the lunge? Do you have an arena? I would either start practicing in the arena or on the lunge, so that either way, you don't have to deal with a run-away. Lacking either or both of those, do you have someone else who can ride her out and canter her and get her stop more reliable for you?
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post #6 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 05:00 PM
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can you do a one rein stop? If not, teach that first, at a w/t. that's your e brake. then ask for a canter in a controlled area. try a few strides at first, then ask for a trot. If at any time she doesn't immediately respond to a cue to slow down, stop her with a one rein stop, then go back to the speed you were going.
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post #7 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 05:10 PM
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If she's good with cantering on a lunge line, I would have someone come and hold the line while you ride, that way you know that someone else has control over her so you don't have to worry so much.
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post #8 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 05:14 PM
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I agree with having her canter on a lunge line first if you can. Then you can build your confidence up from there.

Also I agree with the one rein stop idea. If you know how to do it be prepared for it when you go into the canter if she bolts.

Now that you know each other more there might be a chance she won't do it again, she might have been nervous with you as a new person etc when she did it the first time.

Good luck!
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post #9 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 07:11 PM Thread Starter
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thank you guys for the help! I appreciate is very much.

I have lunged her at a canter a few times. I'm trying to work on it with her. the first few times, she had no clue whatsoever of what I was asking her to do. she'd trot as fast as she possible could or start rearing (she's an arab. whenever she's confused, she rears.) I'll bring her down to a nice trot, then try again... throughout the past few weeks of working with her, I can get he to canter nicely some days and somedays I can't. I'll keep working with her and doing this.

I do know how to do a one-reign stop. I'll try what you guys suggested with that.

This is more of a mental block for me, rather than a training issue for her. I guess I just need to suck it up.

I would like it if someone could canter her for me while I watch, but I don't think I know anyone that is willing to.

I will definitely try to get someone with more experience to watch me though.
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post #10 of 28 Old 10-21-2013, 07:12 PM
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I had the same problem with a mare that I uses to have as a kid. Everyone thought I was crazy, but I was scared to death of having to try and canter on her. Came to find out that the people who had her before me ran her as a barrel horse so the harder I pulled back, I swear the faster she would go. We finally switched her to a bossel which worked better, but the trust between us was already gone. I stopped riding after that, the fear was too much.
I started back again recently with my daughter. And I'm sorry everyday that I didn't stick with it. I suggest that you find someone who is experienced, like an instructor, and get their help with the problem. That may have been how she was trained, and she just needs help being retrained.
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