Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: SF Bay Area, CA
I am new to this forum thing. I am new to horse ownership. I started riding when I was 12 and have been ridding off and on over the years (I am 35 now). I DID read this WHOLE thread before I decided to post. I read EVERY post. The problem is, you stated in your original post that Your horse gets excited and you fall off: well when reading that, it sounds like it happens often. But later on in the thread you stated it happened only once. There is still a problem though, with everything else you say happens and all of the comments you made in your defense does contradict yourself and your abilities. You have come across as a "know-it-all" not by intention I'm sure. And you most likely don't feel like a know-it-all but that is how you came across when you said you didn't "need" lessons. (yes I understand that you can't have lessons now but that is not what you had originally said). That statement alone of not "needing" lessons is a "know-it-all statement. I've been a coach in several different sports and everyone can always learn more.
I know you don't want to hear this again, but one-on-one instruction for you and the horse together is your best option. I say this because I am going through the same thing you are with your horse. For rohsroyalvelvet to suggest you get at home advise for training your horse to behave correctly is like trying to learn gymnastics at home with out a coach or spotter, at some point it is going to result in a broken neck. This isn't a "someone tell me how to bake horse treats" kind of thing. It is dangerous which I know you realize and have accepted. But what you may not have thought about is what if you do get hurt but to the point that you could never ride again? You will want to kick yourself knowing that if you weren't so stubborn you could have prevented it. You will feel bad and guilty if you do something wrong that injures your handsome boy. I know I would. You have to stop thinking he is perfect and start realizing that he is a horse. Right now he sounds as though he has no respect for you. One of the other posters suggested, since you can't have lessons now than to put him away for the winter so he doesn't learn bad habits. During this time just work on groundwork with him. Work on you relationship together and build his respect for you as his leader. I know it is tough for a 13 year old girl to have a horse and not ride but that might be what HAS to be done. You have to think about your horses needs and not just yourself. I thought I was going to have to sell my boy and it killed me. I felt like I was giving up on him. But I had to think about my safety. After I had ah him a few months he started bucking me off. He bucked me off the first time and I got back on him and later that day I went on a trail ride with him and he was fine. A few weeks later he bucked me off again. I refused to get back on him and was going to put a ad to sell him the next day because my nerves were shot. I know what to do on a bucking horse. I have been on a bucker before and stayed in the saddle and worked on. I know I have good (not great) seat, but I had to realize that when it came to my own horse I was dumb. I would completely blank and let go of the reins. Well at first I just thought this horse was just bad and had learned a bad habit. I had someone come out who would ride a bucking horse to "ride the buck out of him," come to find out his saddle was causing him pain in his back. I knew his saddle didn't fit him correctly but I "thought" as long as I keep it loose enough and not trot or canter him until I got a new saddle then he would be fine. Thinking you know what your doing and actually knowing what your doing are two totally different things. I was causing him more pain. So I gave him the time off from under the saddle and worked on groundwork and lunging for exercise and conditioning. Finally I decided to contact trainers and found one that is working with both of us at our facility. I have yet to get on him but I am there every step and he is an amazing horse. I am glad I didn't sell him, but I also got lucky in finding an experienced qualified trainer who is helping us at an astronomically discounted price (because she "feels she needs to help us-Geez are we that bad?) I had to also admit that what I had learned in the past with lesson horses does not translate to your own horse unless you buy a complete dead broke lesson horse. But that was not what I wanted.
In short, have a vet check him out, rule out any possible pain he may be in since he did have a questionable past and was ridden to early. That may solve your problem right there. That has to be the first thing you do before you do anything else (aside from correct tack fitting). Then get a trainer/instructor someone who can train your horse and you together (not just your horse or you). If you can not do that, than your only safe option is put him away, and only work on ground work and take the time to build your relationship with your horse and to "build" your riding areas. Because I know selling him and getting a better behaved more broke horse is not an option for you. You see something in him that none of can see because we aren't around him, just give him a break under saddle until you can get experienced one-on-one help so its not harder to fix later. I hope by the time you have read this post everything has worked out and you are having fun again. I am starting to have fun again with my boy and it is an amazing thing.