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Help me: 'trained' horse now bolting

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    07-11-2011, 01:25 AM
  #11
Weanling
Of course the seat and leg can differentiate between 1 rein stopping and 1 rein turning, but i'm assuming that by 1 rein stop you mean disengaging the hindquarters.

Your right it can be beneficial (still assuming you mean disengaging the hindquarters/turning on the forehand), i've found for the opposite reason. If a horse won't go forward, turn on the forehand/disengage the hindquarters to throw the weight of the horse forward, encouraging it to move forward (in the same way, if the weight of a humans torso was thrown forward they would likely step forward to prevent themselves falling). But moving forward isn't the problem in this case. The key is to engage this horse, and bring its center of gravity back, so it learns to hesitate and control itsself (in the same way a human would slow down and control it's speed if the weight of its torso was thrown back)

Having said all that, it's an easy thing to get away with, not because of the one rein stop itsself, but because of the standstill afterwards.
     
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    07-11-2011, 01:25 AM
  #12
Super Moderator
Quote:
Originally Posted by christopher    
i'm very much against using one rein to stop unless you really feel like your going to be killed.

Rollbacks, endless circles, backing up and standing still are all useful things for rushing/bolting horses.

I would agree that using a ORS to work with a horse that rushes might not be so good, but a horse that is trying to bolt? I would think it a good strategy. I feel there is a difference, with the horse that rushes being a horse that needs speed control, so using circles and such would work them into slowing, but a hrose that is bolting out of a spook, that seems different to me.
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    07-11-2011, 01:34 AM
  #13
Super Moderator
Christopher,

I reread your earlier posts so now I understand better your position, or hope I do. Actually, I agree with you , in a way. You have a good point in that training a horse to stop with his head bent over, WITHOUT disengaging the hindquarters, can become a road to having a horse that does not follow his nose and learns how to either come to a stop bent in an awkward, braced position, or worse, learns to run through the bit with his head bent one way but his "will" still going forward.

The key is really to get the hind quarters to disengage, and to me , that is what I see when someone says one rein stop. I assume that you would be teaching your horse , that when you take up the rein, his nose shoudl follow it around, but more importantly, he should step the inside hind around.

Whether he actually comes to a dead stop is not all that important. The drive has been taken out of the train and the horse may be more available mentally to the rider.
     
    07-11-2011, 01:37 AM
  #14
Weanling
Either way, the horse is getting faster without permission. The reason may be different, but rules is rules. Confidence/spookiness is a different issue, and will likely be solved with exposure and time, but getting faster is getting faster and cannot be allowed, and should be solved in a way that physically helps the horse understand what it is we want.
     
    07-11-2011, 01:53 AM
  #15
Weanling
Using the term "disengage" I think is very deceptive. Though yes, the inside hind has crossed under the outside hind, preventing the horse from running in the short term, objectively though - the hindquarters is still moving more than the forequarters. Teaching the horse to slow down its front feet and speed up its hind feet. Which is counter productive long term if you have a horse that bolts because it puts the horse in a good position to get faster.
     
    07-11-2011, 12:58 PM
  #16
Foal
My horse, Preen, bolts for just a few feet or so. Maybe she would go farther but I stop her immediately -- and she DOES stop.

I have been stopping her by holding a rein in each hand -- in fact, this is how I've been riding and I hate it since I ride western -- and pulling straight back. When she bolts it takes more strength to stop her than when I am simply riding her and she is calm, which is when it takes almost no pressure at all. Even when she bolts it doesn't take a tremendous amount of strength to stop her, but definitely more that usual.

When I first broke her she learned the ORS. I -- and she -- have gotten away from it, however. I am planning to renew her acquaintance with it tomorrow when I will also do some work on flexion, etc.

She usually only bolts once per 3 or 4 hour ride. Last time out, however, she bolted twice, which wasn't good. The SECOND time she bolted -- scared of some nearby horses in a pasture that were nowhere near the fence separating her from them -- I stopped her and THEN made her circle in place.

So, do you think I should first use the ORS and THEN circle her?

I know circling has been very effective in the past. I have gotten her through quite a lot just by circling. But should I halt her first and then circle? Or simply pull her into a circle, space permitting? (Her usual place for bolting is on the side of a road, but not when vehicles are nearby. Her most recent bolts seem to have been in response to cattle leaping over a nearby berm (this one is sort of understandable), excited horses in a nearby pasture (not so understandable since she has passed those horses probably 40 times to date), the same horses but not even close to where Preen was walking, and in the middle of a field when she stepped onto a wet spot where no wet spot had existed previously (wet weather spring).

Now, mind you, Preen will plow right through mud and creeks, so the wet spot has me bumfuzzled. And yet it most definitely was the wet spot because after I'd stopped her I made her walk through the wet spot and she was plenty perturbed about it, shaking her head and not really wanting to go but she did.

Anyway, I like the idea of the 10 minute ride to start. I think I will work on her flexion, ORS and yielding before I leave and then just have her walk down the road and take another road back again. That would be a 10 minute circle.

The next time perhaps I will take her into a nearby pasture where the people I board with have a herd of cattle. I might make her get up close and personal with those cattle since she seems to be having such a hissy fit when they appear. There is a big bull, however, but he usually pays no mind to us when we ride past but I will have to watch him.

There is a very steep hill where I board and I was thinking about possibly urging her to canter up that hill to see if she will buck. I think it is more difficult for a horse to buck when they are going up steep hills. I mean, they may buck but a lot of the 'oomph' is missing (which is a good thing, right?)!

About the arena -- my neighbor has a corral; would that do? We do have an arena but I would have to trailer her over there since it is about 15 miles distant.

THANK YOU for all the help and suggestions! All of you are simply great for taking the time to respond to my problem with an otherwise wonderful horse.
     

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bolting, natural horsemanship, problem horse, training

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