Bolting Help! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 05-01-2011, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Bolting Help!

I am currently riding a 5 year old sport horse mare who has recently developed a nasty habit of bolting. It has been going on for the last 3 weeks now and I am taking her to show 2 weeks from today. The first time she bolted it was unexpected when we were trotting passed a corner in the indoor arena. (She has been in the arena since she was a foal, it has not changed there were no noises or anything there). Suddenly she bolted to the left and I fell off. I got back on and she continued to spook until she calmed down when I got off. She bolted again when we were trotting a circle in the arena at the other half for no reason and this time when I fell off I hit my hip hard.

I believe she is doing it for attention now as she knows she can unseat me. This is becoming a big problem for me as my collection of bruises is growing as she is over 16.2 hh.

Please help! There are no warning signs, her body does not tense and her ears do not go foreward any more than usual.

***Saddle fit is not an issue here we had her saddle fitted to her and she is perfectly healthy***
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post #2 of 19 Old 05-01-2011, 10:09 PM
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Try to focus on the horse and make sure you have a really good seat. Try to sit in the defencive mode. The minute she bolts do a one rein stop and disingage those hindquarters, work those feet in small circle. If you dont know what a one rein stop is i highly recomend you whatch some clinton andersone videos. It sound like she was trying to find a way out of work and she had succeded. Now she knows she can do it. I fyou to affraid to get on have a proffesional trainer get on.
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post #3 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 01:01 AM
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When she does it again, lunge the crap on her till she physically wants to pick you up and set you on her back and serve you tea! Get on walk around, maybe do a bit of trotting then put her up.

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post #4 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 01:24 AM
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My horse will do stuff that I swear there is absolutley NO indication that he is thinking of doing this, like spinning, and has dumped me multiple times.
All I can say is that you have to ride her in such a way as to keep her really occupied. Stay in the middle of the arena to start with and keep her really busy doing somehting that is constantly changeing. And the instant you see her attention wander, you must interupt that mental drift and get her back on you. 5 is very young for a warmblood. They mature slowly. I used to ride a 6 year old and he got a lot better by the time he was 7, but he used to bolt in the arena. If you Can stay with her, I might actually let her go forward and continue to ride her at a canter around and around. But only if you think you can stay with her.
It IS possible, that she is too much horse for you where you are now, and where she is now. Something to think about.
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post #5 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 01:29 AM
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Have you had her teeth floated? What bit are you using?

How is she in the rest of her manners?

I would suggest that you don't take her to the show.
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post #6 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 02:24 AM
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My friend has gotten the habit out of a bolting horse by simply using it against them. She had one horse bolt on the beach with her so she made the mare gallop up and down the beach until she could hardly walk. To this day I haven't heard of her bolting again.

She also did the same to a gelding she owned.. She was in a lesson in the arena when he bolted on her. She stopped him and the instructor made her go out into a big paddock, hold on for life and gallop him until he didn't want to even walk anymore, that fixed him too.

I wouldn't take her to a show if her bolting is making you fall off, that's dangerous for you and the others around you... Plus show grounds seem to always be harder than normal ground but I suppose that's an incentive to not fall off

The only thing apart from a one rein stop that I can think would stop her is to pull her into a very small circle and force her to work in it, every time she tries taking off.

-Last resort you could always buy some seat glue theres equine glue on the internet that you put on your jodphurs and it sticks you to the saddle without wrecking the saddle. Although I wouldn't use it myself because I would get paranoid that I would come halfway off then not be able to free myself and get hurt.

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #7 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 02:49 AM
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I really like what quarter horse had to say, that is what i've had to do with my OTTB who would always do something naughty when he was bored. i work in figure eights, serpentines and circles. Not only is it a great way to work on alot of transitions, leadchanges, and their bend but its fun for you too.

Also, what Holly said. I've seen that work and i've had it work. just like when a horse doesnt want to be caught, you make them run around until they decide it was just much easier to be caught. It doesn't always work the first time, but every horse i have EVER worked with that doesn't want to be caught usually ends up wanting to be caught by the 4th time of being chased around the arena. i would only assume its the same for riding a bolting horse.

good luck! Get some Velcro for your rear end ;]
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post #8 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 04:09 AM
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Is it just me or does it sound as though she was getting bored in the areana?

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post #9 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 06:04 AM
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well do you know how to do lateral flexion? if not. then let me know so i can explain. if there is nothing there to upset her than she is probably doing it so she doesnt have to work. if you can get lateral flexion and then do disengaging her hinquarter than she has a job to do. mix you activitys up so she always has something to think about. eg do a square not a circle- leg yeilding- 360 etc. then she will hopefully forget about bolting.

let me know if you dont know what disengaging the hindquarter and lateral flexion is so i can tell you how to do them. hope this helps

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post #10 of 19 Old 05-02-2011, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for your help! I am unsure how to do a lateral flexation and how to disengage the hindquarters. This usually happens withing the first 10 minutes or so of me getting on her, making it difficult for me to keep her occupied. She needs work, she will not side pass, only speed up and I ride her in a Dee ring bit and she is heavy on it most of the time.
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