Mounting up. - Page 2
 
 

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Mounting up.

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        03-19-2012, 10:53 AM
      #11
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by WesternBella    
    Just wondering, is it a bad thing to hold on to the saddle as opposed to some mane when mounting?
    Posted via Mobile Device
    Not a bad thing, per se. It depends on you, the horse, and the saddle. They say you should be able to mount a western saddle uncinched without pulling the saddle off the horse. Not many people I know can do that, but if you can, you are not hurting the horse. I grab a big handful of mane in my left hand and put my right hand on the cantle of the saddle for balance (not pulling it). If you wrench the saddle too much while you're mounting, you are pushing the bars or tree into the horse's flesh or backbones. That is uncomfortable and horses don't like it. I use a mounting block when I'm mounting from home, and then they don't fear or avoid being mounted. When on the trail, then, they still stand nicely and let me get my sorry butt in the saddle. (I'm not athletic and have very short legs...they have to stand downhill or in a ditch for me.)

    To illustrate what can happen if you pull on the saddle too much, I'll tell this story. My young gelding came back to me from the trainers with extremely bruised shoulders; it made him unsound for a while and he hated being saddled and mounted. The trainer's helpers mounted by hanging on the (western) saddle horn and flinging themselves up into the saddle. I'm not Einstein but I think that, and the fact that he was dealing with ulcers (too thin, so not as much muscle as he needed) and possibly poor saddle fit, did my poor boy in. If they'd used mounting blocks or kept their weight balanced on the top of the saddle instead of pulling it to the side, it would have been different.
         
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        03-19-2012, 11:12 AM
      #12
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by WesternBella    
    Just wondering, is it a bad thing to hold on to the saddle as opposed to some mane when mounting?
    Posted via Mobile Device
    Not unless you don't mind your saddle slipping over to the side when you mount, lol. Personally I ALWAYS have my left hand grab mane to mount. I used to teach equitation and I started my students by having them mount a fence. Your trajectory to mount is a parabela ( of sorts ) from the ground and at a 45 degree angle to the horse's neck. If you shoot for the off side of the horse you could vault OVER the horse.
    Practice with a fence to make sure that YOUR mounting is secure. This is how to mount quickly:
    Grab some mane with your left hand, face to the rear, use your right hand to help get your foot in the stirrup, then grab the cantle, bounce 3 times--this will move you in position--get your right hip next to the horse, bend your knee to your chin, leg tucked next to you, then bounce to stand, both feet together, quietly swing your right leg over as you release the cantle and gently sit down in the saddle.
    You horse is either:
    --frightened of a person mounting
    Or
    --has practiced a bad habit
    To fix frightened, you need a horse holder (I use broken carrots as rewards) and you need to have NUMEROUS approach and retreat practice sessions. (I know this bc my almost 6yo gelding is getting this problem fixed at my house.)
    This is ONE session.
    The rider approaches and just grabs the reins, drops and walks away (10-20x).
    The rider approaches, grabs the reins, puts a foot in the stirrup, drops the stirrup, and walks away. (10-20x)
    The rider approaches, grabs the reins, puts a foot in the stirrup, bounces up and puts weight on the back, then dismounts and walks away. 910-20x)
    You get the picture.
    The handler rewards the horse with a piece of carrot every time the horse relaxes, licks lips, chews, shows signs of relaxing. (You may have to buy a 3lb or 5 lb bag of carrots for this.)
    THE WHOLE TIME THE HANDLER AND THE RIDER PET AND SOOTHE THE HORSE.
    If the problem is a bad habit, get your horse in the arena in a corner, where the off side is next to the wall and the head is stopped by a corner. Pull the left rein towards you as your mount. Praise and dismount. Repeat maybe 10x in a session.
    NOTE: Both fixes may take a couple of months to become a good habit. I intend to practice this with MY gelding all summer. He has the makings of a VERY good trail horse and I'm tired of the problem.
    (You can do these exercises with a mounting block, if you prefer, but eventually you need to do them mounting from the ground, so you horse's habits won't desert you on the trail.)
         
        03-19-2012, 11:30 AM
      #13
    Weanling
    If you allow this continue it will only get worse. I would begin by teaching the horse to ground tie and stand for a period of time without moving. When I begin to mount a horse and it moves I give it a good jab in the mouth as I am stepping down and tell it to stand. Have you ever seen someone trying to load a bad actor in a trailer. As soon as they finally get the horse in the trailer they slam the door shut and drive off until the next time. Same thing with mounting. Dont't just mount one time but get on and off 20 times if you have to without allowing your horse to walk off. Your horse might be moving away because it is anticipating moving off or it may just be avoiding you. After you are mounted don't allow your horse to walk off. Do a lateral flexion exercize. Or pivot the horse on the fore and hind. Back it a step or two and then make it stand for a minute before moving off.
         
        03-19-2012, 11:48 AM
      #14
    Yearling
    I forgot to say that when I was breaking my gelding's bad habit I would stand in position on the mounting block and act like I was going to mount (as described by the other posters great advice, above) and just scratch his big QH butt. He loves butt scratches. It took the pressure off and helped him relax and stand.
         
        03-19-2012, 09:19 PM
      #15
    Foal
    Thanks everyone for the advice. I started having problems with her a couple of years ago. Now that I think about it, she was attacked by a cougar during the wintor months and in the early spring the problems started. I never put the 2 together and not sure if that is the cause. However she starts to move around as soon as I get a hold of her reins so I will look to see how I am holding the riens. Good suggestion. Most times I don't even get to get my foot in the stirrup before she is moving. I am careful as she has taken off with my foot in the stirrup so I have to have a good hold on the rein to stop her. She is excellent after I get on her back just a problem getting up. I will try to hold on to the mane and see how that goes. Thanks agin for the suggestions.
         
        03-19-2012, 09:59 PM
      #16
    Weanling
    I didn't know we had cougars in Michigan. I live near Howell which isn't far from you. I would have never guessed that a cougar would attack a horse, I hope it wasn't too serious.
         
        03-19-2012, 11:22 PM
      #17
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eliduc    
    If you allow this continue it will only get worse. I would begin by teaching the horse to ground tie and stand for a period of time without moving. When I begin to mount a horse and it moves I give it a good jab in the mouth as I am stepping down and tell it to stand. Have you ever seen someone trying to load a bad actor in a trailer. As soon as they finally get the horse in the trailer they slam the door shut and drive off until the next time. Same thing with mounting. Dont't just mount one time but get on and off 20 times if you have to without allowing your horse to walk off. Your horse might be moving away because it is anticipating moving off or it may just be avoiding you. After you are mounted don't allow your horse to walk off. Do a lateral flexion exercize. Or pivot the horse on the fore and hind. Back it a step or two and then make it stand for a minute before moving off.
    I know I shouldn't say but why would you need to hit, slap, jab, poke or any other word to discribe hitting a horse in the face. If the horse is nipping you that is one thing. Ugh
         
        03-19-2012, 11:29 PM
      #18
    Yearling
    My gelding did this at the show this weekend but he's little about 14ish hh and im 5 foot 8 inch and it was easy for me to get him to stand I grabed his reins but kept his left rein a little shorter so if he wanted to walk off it would be in a circle not straight or to the right or my mom would hold him because he waas hot headed.
         
        03-20-2012, 11:59 AM
      #19
    Weanling
    Chandra. Why would any rational person hit their horse in the face when it was already not standing still while being mounted? I was referring to decisively correcting the horse for moving with the rein and bit. Perhaps I wasn't clear.

    People who are more concerned about causing their horse a little discomfort than correcting a potentially dangerous habit will never become an accomplished horseperson and they are not doing their horse a favor either. The ill behavior may very well be a product of the owner's own permissive attitude. When a horse is doing something dangerous you do what you have to to make it stop before it gets worse. That being said, there are always more ways than one to correct a problem. What I described works for me and I can usually fix that problem in ten minutes or less after the horse has been taught to ground tie.
         
        03-20-2012, 01:30 PM
      #20
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eliduc    
    Chandra. Why would any rational person hit their horse in the face when it was already not standing still while being mounted? I was referring to decisively correcting the horse for moving with the rein and bit. Perhaps I wasn't clear.

    People who are more concerned about causing their horse a little discomfort than correcting a potentially dangerous habit will never become an accomplished horseperson and they are not doing their horse a favor either. The ill behavior may very well be a product of the owner's own permissive attitude. When a horse is doing something dangerous you do what you have to to make it stop before it gets worse. That being said, there are always more ways than one to correct a problem. What I described works for me and I can usually fix that problem in ten minutes or less after the horse has been taught to ground tie.
    You can pretend that I'm a permissive horsewomen all you want. No purpose to slapping horses in the face unless to correct them from biting.
         

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