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2 year old? backing?

This is a discussion on 2 year old? backing? within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Backing with a two year old
  • Backing a long two year old

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    02-19-2013, 04:52 PM
  #11
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by horsecrazygirl13    
Because I'm dying to do it.
That's a very selfish reason, though. I understand it - been there myself - but isn't the long term health and joint soundness worth more than saying "yeah! I rode my two year old!!1!!1!"?
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    02-19-2013, 05:00 PM
  #12
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by JustDressageIt    
That's a very selfish reason, though. I understand it - been there myself - but isn't the long term health and joint soundness worth more than saying "yeah! I rode my two year old!!1!!1!"?
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yeah you've got a point. I guess i'll wait until he's close to three to start riding him. But I would like to just sit on his back occasionally. I love him lots and I promise, i'll go sloooww. I have to become a better rider anyway before I can ride a young horse so that's something I can work on this summer.
     
    02-19-2013, 05:16 PM
  #13
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by horsecrazygirl13    
Because I'm dying to do it.
I'm going to agree with JustDressageIt. Many of the futurity horses are pushed at a VERY young age. They usually start backing them at 1.5 years old and by 2-2 1/2 they are pretty much doing everything. However it does depend on the individual horse. I know a futurity reiner who was backed at 1.5 and by 2 she was doing spins, rollbacks, and sliding stops and doing shows professionally. She will be 19 this year, still sound, still does shows and reining.

I've also known some OTTBs who were racing at 2, one I know is in his late 20's and still going strong...However I will never recommend riding anything under 2. Even if its just sitting there. To me I would not do any work until at least 2. Then go from there.

That being said, I started my horse at 2.5. Just riding around for about 10 minutes every so often. If you take your time and don't rush anything I think you can start at 2. When is your horse officially 2? Have you thought of taken x-rays on your horse's knees and back to see where they are?
     
    02-20-2013, 11:15 PM
  #14
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by horsecrazygirl13    
yeah you've got a point. I guess i'll wait until he's close to three to start riding him. But I would like to just sit on his back occasionally. I love him lots and I promise, i'll go sloooww. I have to become a better rider anyway before I can ride a young horse so that's something I can work on this summer.
You should also be a really good rider to even SIT on a young horse... :) they're unpredictable, no matter how much we want to think they won't act up. If he starts to panic and rush around (definitely not an impossibility for a first ride) you could end up doing more mental damage than good if you fall off, confuse him, etc. Babies need to be set up for success by someone familiar with starting colts, but starting to polish your riding skills now is a great idea! As a wise horse person once said "green + green = black and blue"
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    02-20-2013, 11:19 PM
  #15
Yearling
Hey, my filly will be 2 in May as well...I was thinking of sending her to training for a month, then letting her sit and then sending her back... I"m not sure yet though. I'm also dying to sit on her, but considering I'm a chunk right now and she's a baby, it would be a bad thing.

For me at least, it's one of those green + green issues. I do know my horse though, and in the arena at least, she would behave. She's really a slug at heart lol...But she's my baby girl and if I felt that I'd hurt HER, I'd actually rather buy another horse and let her grow.
     
    02-20-2013, 11:25 PM
  #16
Weanling
I guess I just don't understand why waiting is so hard, when in the long run it's usually healthiest. I've started my fair share of horses... And though 2 seems to be the magic moment for most people, I don't back them till 4 years old. I get the horses PERFECT with verbal cues, clipping, bathing, lungeing, sacking out, trailering, ponying, bridling, ground driving, etc. By the time I get on their backs, it is pretty uneventful... I also would rather ride a slightly more mature horse, mentally, than a 2 year old. I turn them out with a herd to they can learn how to be a horse, and save the strenuous stuff for later... It's worked pretty well so far, but I know everyone has their own way of doing things! There are plenty of things to teach a horse before you ever get on their back though :)
     
    02-21-2013, 10:47 AM
  #17
Started
I did all the ground work with my filly last year. She lunges, loads, is easy to bride and saddle, moves away from preasure, stands next to the mounting block, stands with a person jumping next to her, gives to bit preasure and has perfect ground manners. Late last fall(2.5 years old) I hopped on her bareback for 2 minutes and ended a tacked up round pen session by mounting and emediately dismounting.

At 3 + years old this summer I will refresh her ground work and put 30 days of light arena work and trails. At 4 she will be slowly brought into shape in the spring, then do some more serious work in the fall.

Don't rush it, and do your groundwork first. I have seen several people not do the ground work properly, then get on and get tossed, badly scaring their horse in the process.
     
    02-21-2013, 11:25 AM
  #18
Yearling
Hell, some of my colts don't get touched until they are 3 year olds. Then we run them in and buck them out. They spend the first three years of their life running in tough range ground, learning where to put their feet, learning how to carry themselves, and just learning how to be horses. That's a huge training step for babies, IMO, is for them to just learn to be horses first. And no, I would'nt back a two year old. I don't care how much you want to, if your only going to do it for a few minutes, etc. They are just babies. I would rather have a horse with a late start than an early one..
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    02-21-2013, 12:00 PM
  #19
Trained
You will have your horse for a long time. Why hurry the training and perhaps cause some damage to his long term health.
I never ride a horse before 3.
We haler break the foals and handle them then basically leave them alone until 3. We do teach them to stand for a faririer and load in a trailer. Otherwise we let them grow. Most of the arabs here arent started until 4. Shalom
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    02-21-2013, 12:22 PM
  #20
Started
I definitely would not do it at all. I waited till my mare was 3 years old before I even thought of starting her under saddle, and then I kept the work sessions very short and light. At 2 yrs., you could do some light ground driving with your horse. I did ground driving with my mare, by the time she was ready for the saddle she already knew quite a lot.
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