How many people should ride a horse ? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 06:47 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Florida
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How many people should ride a horse ?

Okay some of you have known my horse on here but recap

June 08 She came to be undernourished and trained but only by one person her whole life 7 yr old flighty gorgeous strong TB mare

July 08 started to gain weight and issues
Aug 08 cut on her side, off for a month
Sept 08 started to get wild, couldn't even lunge her
Oct 08 settled a bit, did only trails
Dec 08 a little ring work, was able to jump etc
Jan 09 trail riding and focusing on relaxing

feb 09 to now, transitioning from trails to arena

June 09 first show, placed and did well

Current: I ride her, my 16 year old pony helper rider rides her and my endurance friend trail rides her (endurance training style)

I am starting to think its time I limited her to only me riding her. The 16 year old is good and fearless but is starting to have issues with riding her mouth and also with jumping.

The fast paced trail rides seem to encourage her TB streak and make her think running is right.
I think maybe its time I just rode her arena/ laid back trail ride and then get with a trainer and cut out the other riders.

I know each horse is different but lately I see her going backwards instead of forward. I loved having someone else ride her because she has so much energy and I can't ride her every day and my 16 year old helper is great because it gives me a chance to see what she is doing since I have no one to watch me.

But at this point I see a few bad habits and I think if we are going to move to next level I need to limit her riding to me for now. (or a trained professional which I am hoping to do soon)

What do you all think? Do you think letting some one ride her full out on the trail and/or a less experienced rider jump, flat ride her is an issue?

I think so but love to run this by my friends here.

thanks in advance
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post #2 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 08:03 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Orange County, NC
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That is always the trade off when you let others ride your horse...rarely will you find someone else that will ride your horse the 'way you want/would'.
You can indeed ruin a good horse in the extreme case.
We let only a very small set of horse friends ride our mares, and always communicate about things to work on, etc.
I don't have a good answer for you other than if you think it's causing a problem, stop it and see if it makes a difference.

On the sixth day, God created the Quarter Horse.
On the seventh day, he Painted the good ones.
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post #3 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 08:24 PM
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Florida
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Remember that whenever you are with a horse, you are training it. I teach lessons on some of my horses, but the truth is I spend more saddle time one each of them then they spend giving lessons. Some riders have the best of intentions, but simply lack the timing, feel, and accuracy that it requires to train a horse (not just exercise, because again, we are always training).

I used to love to ride whatever someone would let me get on when I was younger, now, its more of a "please, don't ask me to get on another one!". I have been asked more than once to find a place with a horse just so the rider could have a feel of what they are looking for, just as my trainer does for me. But that is the thing, its just a feel, because each rider needs to learn how to do that for themselves and each horse will quickly fall into whatever pattern that rider has the experience to maintain.

So to answer your questions, yes, having other people ride your horse can have huge affects on what horse you have on a day to day visit. I work at a rescue barn and I can always tell if someone else has tried to handle my assigned horse, the horse never lies, especially a horse that is still working through things, as it sounds your horse is.

I am very picky about who gets on my horses and anyone who isn't willing to learn the way I do things is not allowed to put their butt in the saddle. If they are willing to learn, then I am all for doing what I can to teach them, but then it is my job to give the horses the extra support as they become teachers as well.

Do what you feel you need to. A horse needs to be comfortable with what it knows before it is handled by many different hands.
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post #4 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 08:45 PM
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: SW Michigan
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I think it often depends on the horse.
Like most of the sentiment expressed above, I am very picky about who gets on my horses. There are a couple I have that are good for anyone, and when someone else rides them, I always put in a super gentle bit or use a bosel - I am very protective of my mare's mouths, and only trust a few people with a bit.
I also have a mare that no one can ride but me. Not braggin' on my ability, or saying she's wild - she's hot, for sure, but she's also a snot. She likes my cues only. Even if the rider is at a higher level than I am, she will stand there and ignore their cues because it's not exactly like I do it. Eventually she will follow their cues, but she is strictly a one rider horse. She likes consistency - and it has to be precisely the same every time.
The colts, if they have a good temprament, I will let experienced horsemen ride them as well, but never anyone that can't ride to my level or better - and they must be gentle or they never ride any of them ever again. period.
Different riders can be great, but they can wreck a horse if they aren't any good.
Good luck. That's a hard choice to make, and hard to explain to some folks that think they're super hot shot cowboys.

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post #5 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 09:10 PM
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Unless it is an older well established horse I will not let anyone ride my personal horse. I feel they will just mis cue him and spoil him. We don't all ride the same way and I use my legs, my butt, my body and then after all else fails use the reins. How many ride like that??
I also don't ride with contact.
No I would not let 2 others ride my horse
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post #6 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 09:22 PM
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Location: SE Kansas
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Originally Posted by RiosDad View Post
Unless it is an older well established horse I will not let anyone ride my personal horse. I feel they will just mis cue him and spoil him. We don't all ride the same way and I use my legs, my butt, my body and then after all else fails use the reins. How many ride like that??
I also don't ride with contact.
No I would not let 2 others ride my horse
My husband and I are the same way. No one rides our horses but us. We don't even ride each others horses our riding style is so different. He has Fras and is training Shiloh. I ride Vida and I'm training Saro. We don't swap.

"Until one has loved an animal, part of one's soul remains unawakened..."
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post #7 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 11:08 PM
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It's all depended on where my horses have been at in their training; Pride was good with other people as a trail horse, because he was quiet, and forgiving with 'wrong cues'... so have alot of my other horses. My current boy is not a 'two person' horse at all right now...I'm not even sure I would allow another experienced rider on him, because he has so many issues we are still slowly working through. He has come a long ways since I got him a couple months ago, but took a few years for the girl who had him to ruin him, so it will take some consistancy to change him completely the other way too. I think it's up to you, as an owner and rider to decide what's best for your horse, and where you're at in your training. If the other riders are willing to change their ways of riding for you, maybe they can still help you exercise her, as that could help continue to build her confidence in other people. But again, that's up to you...

"The ideal horseman has the courage of a lion, the patience of a saint, and the hands of a woman..."
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post #8 of 16 Old 08-09-2009, 11:15 PM
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It depends on the horse, I think.. and alo on what you want.

Virtually anyone can ride my mare and I'm ok with it because she responds about the same no matter what.

however, when it comes to my gelding I only like two people riding him... me and my 12 year old counsin who rides just abot exactly like I do and knows how to handle him.

Horseshoe Loop Farm: Home of Gypsie (22 y/o TWH mare), Dakota (10 y/o TWH gelding), Codie (18 y/o Walkaloosa gelding) & Harlow (9 y/o APHA mare)
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post #9 of 16 Old 08-10-2009, 12:35 AM
Join Date: May 2008
Location: North Carolina
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I have one of those horses that does really well when I ride him everyday. If I let him go a couple of days though, he gets harder to handle and more spooky. You said your horse is high-energy and I'm assuming that means that your horse does better when its rode a lot and getting out the energy. So can you handle all that extra energy? I'm not asking because I don't think you can or anything, I just thought that'd be a good question to ask yourself.
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post #10 of 16 Old 08-10-2009, 01:07 AM
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If you're seeing issues, it's time to take a break and fix them before they get worse. Simple as that.


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