jogging and diagonal help

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jogging and diagonal help

This is a discussion on jogging and diagonal help within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Horse skipping into other diagonal
  • Leads and diagonals

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    11-24-2011, 10:38 PM
jogging and diagonal help

Hello, I am new to here; however I could use some advice with my 6yr old mare. I have done all the training on her since she was 18 months old. We are starting English riding as she loves to jump while out on trails and in the pasture. I have ridden English and show jumped in the past, however that was on trained horses and I was simply told how to cue them not truly trained. Right now the problem I am having with my mare is that while jogging she changes her diagonals. She has always done this however in the western saddle it is not as noticeable and does not affect riding as much. My question is how do I keep her from changing her diagonals? She has transitioned to English riding quite well and is very light mouthed and works off of leg pressure.
Thank you for any help!
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    11-24-2011, 11:21 PM
Super Moderator
Some horses prefer a rider stay in one diagonal and are very skillful in skipping a beat and putting a rider back in their preferred diagonal.

The only thing I know to do is be persistent and skip a beat and go right back into the diagonal they do not like. You will have to be constantly aware of your diagonal and skip a beat every single time the horse tries to bounce you into the other one.

I have known horses that never got as comfortable or extended as well in the diagonal they did not like.

I have severe spinal scoliosis and have always been more comfortable and ridden better when in the right (as opposed to the left) diagonal. I am not the only rider that I have known that was a better rider in one diagonal. So, you may also be affecting this horse's like or dislike of a diagonal. You will know it is you if more than one horse you ride likes the same diagonal better.
    11-24-2011, 11:54 PM
How can a horse "skip a beat" to put you on the other diagonal? I mean, arent' they constantly switching from one diagonal pair to the other diagonal pair, with one pair weight bearing while the other is airborn?

I know that horses can try to put you on one diagonal most of the time, but don't know how they can skip a beat and still maintaint that which is defined as a trot.
    11-25-2011, 12:31 AM
I don't know if the horse changes the diagonal as much as its' rider does. I mean the horse can stumble or short stride, but it's the rider that's on the diagonal not the horse.
    11-25-2011, 12:40 AM
Super Moderator
Yes. It is the rider that is on one diagonal or the other, but some horses can consistently bump a rider into a certain diagonal. I have tried to correct a couple of them and it was very difficult to hold a certain diagonal as they would keep taking a strange stride and the rider always came up in the favored diagonal.

I was giving lessons to one rider and she kept saying she could not stay in that diagonal. So I got on the horse and, sure enough, that horse could take a hitch step and you would be on the opposite diagonal -- every single time. This particular horse never moved as well in that diagonal even after we worked ride after ride on it.
    11-25-2011, 12:42 AM
Yes, that is what I thought. But Cherie replied with something aobut the horse changing , and she knows everything about horses!
    11-25-2011, 04:44 PM
Ok maybe I need to clarify what I mean by changing diagonals. Sorry if my terminology is more western than english in advance. When I say my mare is changing her diagonals I mean she is basically changing her leads only at a jog not a canter/lope. When in circles, which I am mostly doing right now, her inside front extends slightly farther than her outside when in the correct diagonal/lead. My mare will change that lead for no reason I can find. She has always done this to an extend however it is very difficult to post and causes us to be unbalanced in the circles or turns when on the rail. Is there any way to train her not to change her leads at the jog? She does not change leads unless asked when at the lope. Her lead changes are flying changes. She will lope in the counter lead when asked as while.
Thank you all for your help!
    11-25-2011, 04:47 PM
Also this is the only horse that does this to me. I have a gelding currently and after showing him that I was not falling out of the saddle for he is a roping horse and never had been ridden in an english saddle. He will stay in the same diagonal/ lead all day long and I can post with him just fine.
Thank you!

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