Canter Aids - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 04-29-2010, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2010
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Canter Aids

Hey everyone, I am new to this forum I have been training this lovely Canadian mare for a few months now, and although we have had a few bumps in the road and disagreements, she now responds like a dream and is completely wonderful to ride. She is slower to 'get' things than most of the other horses I have worked with, and so I hope that you guys will be able to give me a few tips!

I am trying to ask for a canter, but I don't want her to run into it. I've thought about using a hill to my advantage, as I have done that in the past, but I want to hear some of the techniques you guys have. I am not interested in beating her into a canter, I want her to understand what I am asking of her, and be willing. Many thanks!
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post #2 of 3 Old 04-30-2010, 05:37 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
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I use hills for upward momentum using it regularly at the start will build muscle and give her a wonderful bouncy canter. Also i train canter in open spaces not an arena as they can figure out there balance etc without worrying about corners other horses and all that rigmorole. If she doesnt get it straight away try use her pasture buddy (the calm one) to pick up canter give her the ques as she breaks trying to kepp up.

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post #3 of 3 Old 05-01-2010, 12:14 PM
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Montrose, CO
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Keep your canter aid the same every time. Sit back, slide your outside leg back. Very simple. :) If you ask for the canter in the same couple of spots that will help her out as well because she'll have a simple yet clear pattern. Ask for canter, and if her trot speeds up slow her down and ask again. Not more aggressive, just the same. In a few transitions she will start to look for a different answer and she might canter. Try not to let her speed up and rush into canter, as you mentioned. :) Pay special attention to her balance also. If she loses her balance in the canter aid, abort canter and get her balanced again. Once she picks up canter and you feel her attempt to slow down or fall out of it, allow it. Allow her to canter for as long as she stays balanced and can canter with ease. If she falls out, re-balance and ask again. It will only give you more opportunities to get more transitions in. The more you repeat, the more she'll start to organize herself sooner and stay in canter for longer. It is really important to remain balanced yourself. Try not to let your upper body tip forward, stay back so she can balance up underneath you.
A lot of times I will cluck to them in the rhythm of canter. Change the rhythm to canter in your seat. Your whole self portrays canter. Any effort on her part to change smoothly into canter she gets big rewards. :)

In riding, a horse's energy is like a river- guided by the banks but not stopped by them.
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