Advice Please :) - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 12:31 PM Thread Starter
Weanling
 
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Location: San Diego, California
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Advice Please :)

Hi everyone,

My mare is starting to get a habit of running my knee/leg into the rail while going to the right (at a trot & Canter) and I want to nip it in the bud. It's always in the same spot in the arena and I do my best anticipate and push her over with my outside leg. She does get off my outside leg but it doesn't seem to be breaking the pattern enough, I don't want to have to push her over like that forever. My trainer suggested I tip her nose into the rail and if I have to make her do a roll back each time she gets too close to the rail. Do you have other any Ideas what might help if te above doens't work?

She's only 5 weeks into training and we've been teaching her to stay on the rail. I really don't think she is trying to get me off of her back, I'm sure she is just trying to do what she thinks we want. I do try & mix it up in the arena, squares, fig 8's, circles etc. and not constant rail work.

Oh, if it helps I ride western and only use contact on the reins when I *have to*. I try to use my seat and legs as much as I can and always before going to the reins.


Thanks in advance!!

My blog ~Life and Horses~
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post #2 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 03:23 PM
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I have two suggestions. First, you could work OFF the rail, like stay on the quarter line. This works very well with horses that use the rail as a crutch. However, you say you have been working on getting her ON the rail, so that's probably counter-productive. O_O Second, teach her to leg yield. LOTS of leg yields. Come down the center line and get her moving as far to the left [or the right] as you can before you get to the other end of the arena. When she's got the idea down, you can come down the quarter line and leg yield to the wall. Then when she's a pro, you can start on the rail, leg yield to the quarter line, and then back to the wall. =]

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 04:58 PM
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Only 5 weeks into training, meaning what exactly? Five weeks since someone first got on her back? If that, then you're going to have to steer for her for quite a while longer.

You're turning to the right and your left leg is getting rubbed? Then she's leaning in. This is perfectly normal for an unbalanced, green horse. Use a strong inside leg to make her stand up straighter. Also make very sure YOU aren't leaning.

I don't understand "it helps if I ride western." Do you switch back and forth between styles often? If contact makes it worse, then you're riding too much with your hand and not enough with your seat. People do this long after they think they don't (ask how I know).

The reason this happens mainly in one place in the arena is that you're expecting it there, or you're riding less smoothly there. Work on making your position and aids absolutely perfect there. Don't be surprised if your horse stiffens or resists at first -- she's probably not muscled up yet and this is hard for her. She's NOT trying to get rid of you -- just doing what is easiest for her physically.
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 05:07 PM
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And don't forget look where you want to go if you look at that spot you will go to it !!!! And keep youself straight and a positive aid at that point, but don't dwell on it ride through it
Lots of dressage movements
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post #5 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rule of Reason View Post
I don't understand "it helps if I ride western." Do you switch back and forth between styles often? If contact makes it worse, then you're riding too much with your hand and not enough with your seat. People do this long after they think they don't (ask how I know).

The reason this happens mainly in one place in the arena is that you're expecting it there, or you're riding less smoothly there. Work on making your position and aids absolutely perfect there. Don't be surprised if your horse stiffens or resists at first -- she's probably not muscled up yet and this is hard for her. She's NOT trying to get rid of you -- just doing what is easiest for her physically.
I need to proof-read! Sorry :/ I only ment to say that I ride western, if it would help you give better suggestions/advice if you knew my ridding style. I don't ride english at all.

I think you're right on the target regarding her being unbalanced and doing what is physically easier.

As for training, she had "30 days" when I bought her 3 years ago and I did minimal ridding/training (trail ridding on my property once a week and ground work) with her myself and she was pretty much just a 'backyard' horse for nearly the last two years.

I sent her to a trainer 5 weeks ago to basically re-start her. She knew how to carry a rider and some basic basic stuff (stop, go, turn left & right and back-up... that's about it) and was pretty dull, and very out of shape.

Thanks for your feed back!

My blog ~Life and Horses~
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 05:34 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pegasusplaybus View Post
And don't forget look where you want to go if you look at that spot you will go to it !!!! And keep youself straight and a positive aid at that point, but don't dwell on it ride through it
Lots of dressage movements
Practicing patterns with cones has totally helped with that, lol!

Unfortunatley I know pretty much diddly about dressage movements.

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post #7 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ktibb View Post
I need to proof-read! Sorry :/
NM, I just re-read my original post & it's worded correctly.

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