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HorseHelp: Building up your horses back, In-hand and Under Saddle

This is a discussion on HorseHelp: Building up your horses back, In-hand and Under Saddle within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Horse up a hands backend
  • "bars of my mouth"

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    12-27-2010, 07:10 PM
  #21
Weanling
Just subscribing. Great info.
     
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    12-27-2010, 07:59 PM
  #22
Started
I have a 7yo tb gelding who needs more topline and more neck muscle, and needs to use his back end better, before I can do bit work with him, and before I decide to jump him, I was told he has "race muscle" in his neck and it needs to go up further towards the top of his neck like an inch before I can do bit work with him or it'll just hurt his neck...

But how do I get him working long and low? He is a well trained horse, only been off the track since April, and I bought him in December. I can walk, trot, canter on a loose rein etc slow him up no problems and we do poles etc, but I was told to drop the reins to get him to work long and low, he doesn't do it automatically.

I do the carrot stretches with him using his drink bottle, he is really intrigued with it so I use that instead of treats. [He likes it because when I take the lid off it he blows into it with his nose it makes noise and he finds it really cool]

I will do hill work with him soon, but my goal is to compete in the local sports day in February. I want to do the pleasure ring, and sj 70cm.
     
    12-27-2010, 08:16 PM
  #23
Banned
HollyBubbles- I had the same problem! My mare loves doing a giraffe impression! If you can find or borrow a pair of side reins, try attaching them low to suggest to him to drop hid head- once he does it once, he will do it more and more as he will find it quite comfortable! Or, if you can find a long bungee cord or the 'elastic training rein' from Dover Saddlery, you can attach one end to the girth between his legs and the other side to the bit and that will lightly pressure him to drop his head. The problem will be getting him to drop his head the first few times- with only a couple of days of lunge work, my mare found it quite easy to drop her head in a nice, relaxed way! Make sure the bit you are using on him isn't to severe- the eggbutt snaffle of a variation of it (my mare goes in a slow-twist for long and low) works very well for long and low exercise, because your horse will have to lean into the bit to get his balance initially. Loose rings won't work because they are designed to keep the horse from leaning. And the mouthpiece should be nice and thick, thin bits are harsh on the bars of my mouth and your horse would have the opposite reaction, your horse would back off the bit or hide behind it instead if stretching into your hands! I hope this helps, and you find a solution for your boy! Have fun!
     
    12-27-2010, 08:37 PM
  #24
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ak1    
Love this! :) I gotta try the long and low with Pipsqueak! :)
YES you do! I can't wait to see that, with that much rein she'd probably move out into a pretty intense extension!
     
    12-27-2010, 08:44 PM
  #25
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoheganSun    
HollyBubbles- I had the same problem! My mare loves doing a giraffe impression! If you can find or borrow a pair of side reins, try attaching them low to suggest to him to drop hid head- once he does it once, he will do it more and more as he will find it quite comfortable! Or, if you can find a long bungee cord or the 'elastic training rein' from Dover Saddlery, you can attach one end to the girth between his legs and the other side to the bit and that will lightly pressure him to drop his head. The problem will be getting him to drop his head the first few times- with only a couple of days of lunge work, my mare found it quite easy to drop her head in a nice, relaxed way! Make sure the bit you are using on him isn't to severe- the eggbutt snaffle of a variation of it (my mare goes in a slow-twist for long and low) works very well for long and low exercise, because your horse will have to lean into the bit to get his balance initially. Loose rings won't work because they are designed to keep the horse from leaning. And the mouthpiece should be nice and thick, thin bits are harsh on the bars of my mouth and your horse would have the opposite reaction, your horse would back off the bit or hide behind it instead if stretching into your hands! I hope this helps, and you find a solution for your boy! Have fun!
that is sort of what I am doing with Buzz now :) cept I don't have access to side reins so I have just been doing a lot of transitions and now he's head is held slighlt lower :)
I wanna invest in some side reins though and that post was great really explained it :)
     
    12-27-2010, 10:02 PM
  #26
Started
Quote:
HollyBubbles- I had the same problem! My mare loves doing a giraffe impression! If you can find or borrow a pair of side reins, try attaching them low to suggest to him to drop hid head- once he does it once, he will do it more and more as he will find it quite comfortable! Or, if you can find a long bungee cord or the 'elastic training rein' from Dover Saddlery, you can attach one end to the girth between his legs and the other side to the bit and that will lightly pressure him to drop his head. The problem will be getting him to drop his head the first few times- with only a couple of days of lunge work, my mare found it quite easy to drop her head in a nice, relaxed way! Make sure the bit you are using on him isn't to severe- the eggbutt snaffle of a variation of it (my mare goes in a slow-twist for long and low) works very well for long and low exercise, because your horse will have to lean into the bit to get his balance initially. Loose rings won't work because they are designed to keep the horse from leaning. And the mouthpiece should be nice and thick, thin bits are harsh on the bars of my mouth and your horse would have the opposite reaction, your horse would back off the bit or hide behind it instead if stretching into your hands! I hope this helps, and you find a solution for your boy! Have fun!
That's exactly the bit I have on him haha and it's fixed ring too, nice and thick, although when I get a chance I'm going to get the next size up as I feel it's to close to the sides of his mouth.
I think I will want to learn how to use side reins properly before I think about trying them, I've never used them before but I have a friend who can help me out with that.
Thankyou, I will be trying that once this horrible weather clears up I think, I would rather lunge him with a bungee or side reins when It's not windy and he's not wound up because of it... As I don't think having a tense horse would be very good for getting him to work long and low haha.
     
    12-28-2010, 03:20 AM
  #27
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoheganSun    
HIf you can find or borrow a pair of side reins, try attaching them low to suggest to him to drop hid head- once he does it once, he will do it more and more as he will find it quite comfortable! Or, if you can find a long bungee cord or the 'elastic training rein' from Dover Saddlery, you can attach one end to the girth between his legs and the other side to the bit and that will lightly pressure him to drop his head.

Make sure the bit you are using on him isn't to severe- the eggbutt snaffle of a variation of it (my mare goes in a slow-twist for long and low) works very well for long and low exercise, because your horse will have to lean into the bit to get his balance initially.
You do not want to Drag a horses head down using side reins or any other rein for that matter. You need to push a horse UP between your leg and hand so that he tucks his back end under, powers from the inside hind leg, brings his back up and round and lifts his wither. Only when he has done all of this should you worry about where his head is, however if you are doing it correctly then he will have already flexed at the poll and come onto the bit anyway, no need to drag him into a flase outline.

You should NEVER Ride in Side reins or a bungie.

A horse Should never have to LEAN on anything. You may have to take up a contact but any form of leaning what so ever is to be discouraged.
     
    12-28-2010, 04:06 PM
  #28
Started
Quote:
You do not want to Drag a horses head down using side reins or any other rein for that matter
I don't want to drag his head down but he has racing muscle and for him to comfortably work rounded or on the bit etc I need to extend the muscle he has, up another inch towards the top of his neck. They trained him the cheap way to get him to look pretty for prospective buyers, but when they took him off the track they immediately worked on getting him rounded without looking at his neck muscles which are clearly defined in his neck.
I would only use them after I have been taught face to face how to use them, and only to get him to drop his head, I want him to work long and low to stretch his neck and back and once he gets the idea of dropping his head I won't use them for that purpose anymore.

Quote:
You should NEVER Ride in Side reins or a bungie.
I won't ride in them I promise you that, if I am to use them I will only be lunging him with them on. I do ride with a running martingale (only occasionally if he is having a "oh lets be a giraffe" day, and on my mare that rears)

Quote:
You need to push a horse UP between your leg and hand so that he tucks his back end under, powers from the inside hind leg, brings his back up and round and lifts his wither.
Yes he has the problem where because of the "pretty training" they taught him to be on the bit all the time, but forgot about teaching his hind end to be underneath him, so he is lazy with his back end... Hill work here we come.
He is still learning all the commands though as his last race start was april this year and I have only just gotten him this month.
I'm going to get him to bring his hind end under properly before I think about long and low or bit work or anything like that.
     
    12-28-2010, 05:07 PM
  #29
Green Broke
Please do not back up a hill, that is incredibly dangerous. It is not only damaging to the horses hocks, it increases your risk of slipping AND it encourages a horse to think backwards.

You need a forwards thinking horse not a backwards one, which is why in dressage a maximum of 8 backwards strides immediatly followed by moving forwards is all that is asked for.

Hill work (forwards) is very very good for fitness and top line but if the back is truely swayed then nothing on earth will help it.

     
    12-28-2010, 07:13 PM
  #30
Trained
Quote:
You need to push a horse UP between your leg and hand so that he tucks his back end under, powers from the inside hind leg, brings his back up and round and lifts his wither. Only when he has done all of this should you worry about where his head is, however if you are doing it correctly then he will have already flexed at the poll and come onto the bit anyway, no need to drag him into a flase outline.
^^ This, and well said Faye!!! Your horse should be searching for contact, through being worked correctly and efficiantly through their rider. Riding Back to Front - Seat into Legs into Hands.

Not using a twisted bit or using gadgets like bungee chords and all that crap - but through effective, correct riding.

Quote:
Please do not back up a hill, that is incredibly dangerous. It is not only damaging to the horses hocks, it increases your risk of slipping AND it encourages a horse to think backwards.

You need a forwards thinking horse not a backwards one, which is why in dressage a maximum of 8 backwards strides immediatly followed by moving forwards is all that is asked for.


Hill work (forwards) is very very good for fitness and top line but if the back is truely swayed then nothing on earth will help it.
This again - never back a horse up a hill. As explained to me by my Equine Lameness Specialist, is just as you stated - very bad on your horses hocks.

Quote:
My mare loves doing a giraffe impression! If you can find or borrow a pair of side reins, try attaching them low to suggest to him to drop hid head- once he does it once, he will do it more and more as he will find it quite comfortable! Or, if you can find a long bungee cord or the 'elastic training rein' from Dover Saddlery, you can attach one end to the girth between his legs and the other side to the bit and that will lightly pressure him to drop his head. The problem will be getting him to drop his head the first few times- with only a couple of days of lunge work, my mare found it quite easy to drop her head in a nice, relaxed way!
Where in this explanation, is the discussion of ensuring that your horse is going around and using their body correctly? Where is the explanation that your horse must be engaged, off of their forehand, tracking up, and using their body correctly, to ensure that the correct muscles are being developed???????

I greatly disagree with using gadgets - especially for people who have no clue how to use them, or how to ensure that their horse is working correctly.
     

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