Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Northern Illinois
Are you doing this from the ground or saddle? By green, do you mean green just under saddle I am assuming?
I would teach flexion from the ground. I usually use a rope halter. Basically, you stand next to the horse and ask for their head. A relaxed and trained horse will drop their head and turn to look at you without moving their feet. Once they have that down, hold that pressure and keep their head there while asking for them to move their hind by rubbing your hand on the area of their side where your calf would rub under saddle. When the horse moves their hind, release all pressure. This teaches them not only to flex, but to respond to leg pressure.
Also, do a lot of bending and leading exercises.
Another thing, since the horse is green I would recommend when under saddle that you not release that pressure until they move. So when you ask for that turn and the horse bends their neck, put your foot on them and rub with your calf. If you get no response, keep the pressure on both the bit and their side. Eventually, their neck will get tired and they will move, even if slightly. As soon as they move or try, release all pressure. It is vital with a green horse to release even if they don't move as much as you want them to. If you reward even the smallest try, it will make a very light and responsive horse with time. That is absolutely key, especially for a barrel horse.
** Don't be the rider who gallops all night and never sees the horse that is beneath him **