How to que your horse to go? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 02-12-2011, 11:46 AM Thread Starter
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Question How to que your horse to go?

I going to start training my horse, but everytime I try kicking for him to go he doesn't move. How do I teach him that when I kick means go?
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post #2 of 13 Old 02-12-2011, 01:42 PM
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I would stand next to mine with the saddle on and tap him with the stirrups until he went forward, then stop. It took a little while and I had to keep his attentions on me but he learned...now if I could just find the brakes!
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post #3 of 13 Old 02-12-2011, 03:53 PM
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Is this a serious question? If so a better question would be, does he stop?
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post #4 of 13 Old 02-12-2011, 04:25 PM
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My opinion

When teaching any cue remember the following

Precue (cluck), cue (light kick or squeeze), enforcer (harder kick, spur, etc..)

If you maintain this order everytime and be consitent, your horse would ideally respond to the precue.

Another way to get them to move ahead, is applying the same method in the round pen or longe line. When you give the precue (verbal signal) to move forward, back it up with a crack of the whip, and if need be the enforcer being the tap. Once consistent this will translate to responding to the verbal cue and that can easily be applied when you are on the horses back.

As for stopping. I like to use emergency stop scenario with my young horses, which means getting them to disengage the hip. When you apply rein pressure on one side, your horse should turn and move the hip over (disengage). No hip no power!

You can do this from the ground to start as well.


Hope that helps.

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post #5 of 13 Old 02-13-2011, 12:56 AM
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Ok... think about it. If you just kick straight out, what's your horse going to think? I'd say he's going to be pretty annoyed about getting kicked for doing nothing wrong! Not sure how old you are but for simplicities sake lets say you're a kid. If your parents want you to do something, and you're happily doing your own thing, they walk in and start yelling at you - you're going to be pretty annoyed about it right? And probably less inclined to do what they've asked than if they'd come in and asked politely first.

Ask first. Nicely - with a small squeeze of your calf and a lightening of your seat.
If you get no reaction, then a small kick. If you get no reaction, then go for a tap with a long dressage whip behind your leg.

You must ALWAYS ask nicely first, if you just go out and kick your horse every time you want it to speed up, the only thing you're 'training' it is to become dead to the leg - and since you are starting with a kick as the 'asking' aid... what are you going to do to increase the pressure? A cattle prod??
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post #6 of 13 Old 02-13-2011, 01:00 AM
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I agree with Kayty, start with a gentle squeeze and move up. However, if you don't already have a cue that you use from the ground (a word, cluck, smooch, or whatever), then you have nothing to translate to the saddle. If the horse is not clear on forward cues from the ground, then there is no hope of getting him to understand them from the saddle.

Also, I wanted to tell you, be careful with just constant kickkickkickickkicking. Sooner or later, the horse will get fed up and turn sour on you. It may be something as uneventful as just pinning his ears, swishing his tail, and refusing to move. On the other hand, he may turn to bucking to alleviate the constant pounding on his ribs.

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: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #7 of 13 Old 02-13-2011, 01:15 AM
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I am a bit worried about you as it seems that you are starting a green horse, and this is a fairly basic thing. You could get really hurt if you don't know what to do and how the horse might/could react.
Can you find a trainer?

Also someone mentioned spurs, please do not do this on a green horse, you could end up dead.
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post #8 of 13 Old 02-13-2011, 03:36 AM
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always give the horse a chance to respond of a light pressure. Whether that be a light squeeze, seat or a cluck doesnt matter. As long as you've given them a good chance to do the right thing, after that it doesnt matter what you do. But having said that try to be as gentle as you can and as soon as the horse takes even a step forward cease the squeeze/seat/cluck. And don't insist he maintain the forward movement for the first few times you do it.

What I do is lighten my seat, light squeeze of the calfs, then tap them on the rump with my hand or use a small bit of rope and swing it around behind you (slowly, don't want to scare the horse, but gradually increasing the pace)

Also, once that works and you can do single upwards transitions with ease, do lots of halt - trot/canter/gallop transitions for sensitivity.

Same applies in reverse, lots of trot/canter/gallop - backup transitions for sensitivity.

And for safety's sake, I would never ask for anything "forward" unless the horse was reasonably soft to backing up from rein pressure and lateral flexion from rein pressure. And I advise you do the same.
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post #9 of 13 Old 02-13-2011, 03:49 PM
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I start teaching "go" from the ground up...the cues stay the same...and the pressure 'increases' as the horse 'lacks' response.

I click first...if no response, I will tap the air near the horse's hip (undersaddle, this will be a light squeeze with my calves), if still no response, I tap the hip with increasing intesity until the horse responds, and AS SOON as he responds, I release.

Undersaddle, I lighten my seat, loosen my reins, and click...if no response, I then squeeze with calves, and if still no response I spank with crop or mecate. Always, always start out as soft as possible, not hard...you want the horse to respond to light pressure, not have to rely on hard pressure. Reward the slightest effort in the beggining and then gradually ask for more and more. Horses learn from the release, not the pressure that's put on them.

I also agree with christopher...do not get on a colt until he knows lateral pressure and is very soft laterally...this is your lifeline if he decides to do anything goofy in your first couple of rides, as you will be able to disengage that hind quarter!!! I always do alot of transitions from the first ride on...don't just get on and walk, get those feet moving from the get go; it can be very helpful to have another person to do the 'driving' as well.

"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 #10 of 13 Old 02-13-2011, 04:08 PM
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If you do not even know the simplest of basics, you cannot teach a horse what you do not know. You need a trainer that will take this horse and either let you watch or take on you AND the horse as a project.

You simply do not know what you do not know. This horse is going to get spoiled and you are going to get hurt.

If you bought an airplane, you would not try to learn to fly it by yourself. You should not be trying to learn how to train an un-broke horse from internet tips. At the very least, you need coaching and feedback from a real, live person.

Please listen to this advise. It is not meant to be critical but is meant to keep you safe and keep your horse from becoming spoiled.
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