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This is a discussion on Frustrated... within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        11-28-2011, 07:40 PM
    Unhappy Frustrated...

    I'm frustrated after our ride today..I even cried I was riding, and at the beginning it went pretty well. I wouldn't let him move up from a walk until he was relaxed, and his head was low. But honestly, that felt like the only good part of the ride. I would ask him to trot/canter with a smooch and squeeze of my legs, and then he would slow down, or even worse, stop (I did get him to trot and canter a bit, but not much)! He stops perfectly when I just say "whoa" so I'm wondering if he thinks he is supposed to stop whenever he hears my voice. I was getting really frustrated, so I stopped riding because I didn't want to let out any of my frustration on him. Then I just buried my face on his neck and cried for a minute or two. Thankfully my mom didn't notice. Inside I was thinking, "what did your old owner teach you??" Whenever I squeeze with my legs, or cluck, he almost always slows down/stops. What did his old owner do with him!??! I feel like I'm never going to get anywhere, and that I'm going to fail..And if I do fail, it'll kill me (not literally). Failure is my biggest fear. Sorry about the rant, I just had to let it out..
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        11-28-2011, 08:07 PM
    Cheer up :) I have heard of western riders training there horses to stop from leg pressure or by spur. Not sure if that could be something to look into. I have never done it!! My trainer was telling me all her horses for reining and cutting are spur and leg trained to slow and stop... I would investigate there. If that's the case then you figure out why its happening :) goodluck and head up!!! :)
    kittersrox likes this.
        11-28-2011, 08:57 PM
    It could very well be your voice on the stopping. The horse I gave my granddaughter would stop anytime I said good boy to him. Talk about frustrating. You might try saying different things and see how he reacts. Also try different go cues. Shifting weight may be all he needs. Good luck figuring it out.. Don't get too frustrated.. It's a challenge.
    kittersrox likes this.
        11-28-2011, 09:01 PM
    My horse used to think "good boy" meant relax and stop and go to the middle of the arena cause we're done. It took a good few weeks to retrain his brain :P

    You aren't a failure, just your horse and you are miscommunication.. you need to teach and talk to him in a way he understands.. pressure and release. If you squeeze and he stops, kick him, tap him on the shoulder.. tell him walk on. If he still doesn't get it, it sounds like you need to do some ground work with him under supervision of course.

    I've cried from frustrating rides too, miscommunication is very frustrating and upsetting :/
    You were right to not take it out on your horse :) You guys just need to learn the same language together :P
    kittersrox and xxGallopxx like this.
        11-29-2011, 01:38 AM
    How about take a day off, go out to the stable and have some fun on the ground with your horse. Sharpen up your ground skills, hang out, graze your horse take a book out and read with your horse while grazing. Hang out with a friend with her/his horse. Have some fun on the ground, set up courses to practice groundwork on. Then, treat to yourself to a treat with a friend, maybe go to a movie or get a pedicure. Next day, take a deep breath, and start over. Act like you have never ridden your horse, and that your horse has never been ridden before. Start from the basics. Spend extra time grooming "getting to know" your horse. Warm-up extra long. Lunge your horse before you ride to help get his attention on you, and get of the edge.
    kittersrox likes this.
        11-29-2011, 02:02 AM
    Oh honey, we've all had those days! Makes you really appreciate those "perfect" rides. I'm sure you'll figure out how to correct his stopping, and don't ever think you're a failure! Horses are a constant learning project. As long as you keep trying and keep learning new methods then you're not a failure.
    kittersrox likes this.
        11-29-2011, 08:25 AM
    Thats funny about the stopping when you say goodboy. My horse did that when I lunged him..any excuse to stop! Ha ha
    You are being way to hard on yourself sweetie, I have felt the same thing at times but after thinking about whatever the problem is and getting some outside advice it usually works out. The advice above is all good. Sometimes I have to really get after my boy with a crop, then he is like ok, she really means business. The crop is after the more mild cues.. good luck you will be fine
        11-29-2011, 11:34 AM
    Thanks you guys, it's nice to hear some encouraging words. :) Hmm..Interesting stopping from leg pressure, I'll have to look into that. I'm just going to go out and hang around with him today. Hopefully that goes well ;P

    caseymyhorserocks - Unfortunately, I don't know how to lunge, and honestly, I don't think he does either. Otherwise I would definitely do it!
        11-29-2011, 12:31 PM
    Did you ride him before you got him?
        11-29-2011, 12:53 PM
    Originally Posted by mls    
    Did you ride him before you got him?
    Yes, I got to ride him a couple times. Now when I think about it, I think his old owner said I might need spurs..

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