Fat, Green and Clueless
I volunteer at a therapeutic riding center and I have been helping train a 5 year old Haflinger. He's great with the kids, never a wrong step, but he's clueless when someone more experienced gets on him.
He was a trail horse before so he never really learned leads or how to stay on the rail in the ring. He's a total fatty which is why I'm riding him a few times a week (the therapy kids only walk and that's not enough work, plus we ride every horse at least once a week to let them have some fun). I ride him in a D-ring snaffle which is perfect for his sensitive mouth.
Last time I rode him, a horse pooped in the corner. I let him sniff it once and then it took me a half hour to get him to walk past it without trying to stop or stop later and back up to it. It was another half hour till I could trot him past it.
He understand what the leg means, but he's so fat, it's hard to push him into corners, which is his biggest problem. I can't use spurs and I use a dressage whip for cantering because it helps me enforce the correct lead.
Does anyone know a good way to enforce staying straight and moving into corners? For corners I have been pulling my inside rein back, my outside rein a little out and squeezing with all my might with my inside leg, and my outside leg keeps him moving. That was how a dressage trainer taught me to help green horses and to encourage them to stay out but still have an inside bend. He gets it pretty good by the end of the ride but it feels like i'm starting over every time.
I know it will take some time, but am I doing it right?