how do YOU start a horse? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 24 Old 08-07-2012, 09:19 PM Thread Starter
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how do YOU start a horse?

Im just curious. I know everyone does it diffrently, so just explain as best you can how YOU do it.

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post #2 of 24 Old 08-07-2012, 10:04 PM
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Depends on the colt.

If he has been exposed to humans and halter broke I will stick him in a round pen and work him. He learns that being next to me. And paying attention is the best place to be. I also get him really soft in a halter during that.
At that point sacking out and saddling doesn't take long if I did it right. Then getting him used to weight in the stirrup on both sides, rubbing him with my foot on his butt, rubbing his neck and head with my hands. I don't sneak rides on colts! Causes for wrecks later and usually a lot worse than if you would of dealt with the issue in the beginning!
When ready, I mount and ride. I ride in a halter for the first couple of rides, when I switch directions, I flip the lead over his head. When I ask for a stop I wait until he wants to stop(training is about using a horses thoughts and actions to your advantage, good or bad) I quit riding, and attempt to bend to the stop. I start with leg(or lack of) and seat before the face even at that stage, they start to hunt the stop.
After a ride or so I let him pack the snaffle but still use the halter. When he is comfortable I introduce using the reins and ride him with the snaffle.
Usually by the fifth ride we are outside. Whether it be the arena or the pasture. Too much rounpen makes for sticky bored colts.
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post #3 of 24 Old 08-07-2012, 10:14 PM
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My tactics are pretty much identical to Chick's except I go ahead and start them in the snaffle instead of the halter.

I'll push as much as I think the horse can cope with because they learn faster and turn into better horses that way. Biggest problem is sometimes you can push them too far before you realize that they were close to breaking.

This filly was halter broke (barely) when she came to me. This was her first day of training and her first ride.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog:
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post #4 of 24 Old 08-07-2012, 10:26 PM
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I waaaaaaay too lazy to type everything out, but you can follow my process pretty well through these two threads

First ride!

Riding my 2 year old - 5th ride!

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post #5 of 24 Old 08-07-2012, 10:28 PM
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In all seriousness & your safety....if you have to ask the question then I would highly recommend hiring a trainer.

Horsepower: the extraordinary capacity of a horse to elevate the human spirit!

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post #6 of 24 Old 08-07-2012, 11:23 PM
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Originally Posted by eclipseranch View Post
In all seriousness & your safety....if you have to ask the question then I would highly recommend hiring a trainer.
I can see anyone asking the question the op asked though... She wasn't saying, "I have this 2 year old, now how do I start him?"
Just asking how everyone on here does it. She might already know how to train, or she might not have a young horse that needs trained anyway.

You can't tell from the 1st post on here, but maybe there's more back story I don't know.

I've only started one horse from the ground up, and helped retrain a few others, but the biggest thing I always start with is making sure the horse has the right attitude on the ground before getting on. In a calm, thinking frame of mind. It makes worlds of difference. Some horses get into fight or flight mode very easily and they don't learn anything that way. Same thing for those horses that tend to be pushy and obnoxious, you want them in a very giving attitude before you get on.
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post #7 of 24 Old 08-08-2012, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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Nope im not training a horse. just like I said, only curious. I have been helping a guy for about three years but im just a hand i gess you could say.
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post #8 of 24 Old 08-10-2012, 12:11 AM
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Cash's First Ride - YouTube

Figured I'd throw mine in here too.
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post #9 of 24 Old 08-10-2012, 12:59 AM
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Well, I don't do it to make a living so I go slow.
-Usually start with sacking out using various floppy things like shirts, coats, plastic sacks, tarps etc.
-I put my weight on them in various ways so they get somewhat used to adjusting their balance. That's one of the most interesting sensations, a young horse trying to figure out how to walk with a rider on their back for the first time or two. I'll work up to the point I can put most my weight on them without reaction.
-Next comes a junk saddle on their back, don't want to ruin a good one from a blowup (haven't had a blowup yet but you never know). Once they are ok with the saddle just sitting there I'll slowly cinch it up until they get used to that.
-Then it's driving time. I wont crawl in the saddle until they understand go, whoa, left and right. Use a couple lunge lines so I can hang out well behind the rear end then have someone lead them as I drive from behind. Once I can drive without a helper they are ready for their first ride.
-First time in the saddle I'll have a helper hold them while I jump up and down beside them. Then it's put a foot in the saddle and more jumping. That's good? Then it's time for my rump to hit the saddle. I don't give them time to think about what just happened and have my helper take off once I'm situated leading them. We then repeat the go, whoa, left and right exercises with the helper leading. Once that is down pat the helper fades away and riding has finally started.

Like I said, I'm not making a living at it but enjoy raising and training my own horses. I know most trainers can be on their back in just a day or two but I take my time. This whole thing starts when I get them home and takes until they are actually old enough to crawl on their backs. Fastest time frame will be a couple of months even if already old enough to jump on up. I'm going to minimize my risk of getting hurt so I don't progress to the next step until sure the chance of getting hurt is small.

Youngest I've ever started working on a foal was 6mos (sacking out step). By the time he was old enough to ride he acted like an old pro.
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post #10 of 24 Old 08-10-2012, 01:10 AM
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I call my colt breaker and find out when I can drop it off.
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