I finally figured out why ever since I taught Lacey to "neck rein" she's been having issues with direct reining and having contact with her mouth! >.<
It's distinctly because every time I've been trying to neck rein her I accidentally pull on the rein I'm laying over her neck so now she thinks that pulling the right rein means go left and pulling the left rein means go right. >.< Thankfully I caught it before it became ingrained in her mind, we just have to do some serious reversing to do, training wise.
How do I fix it? I guess a start would be to start putting my hand forward when I ask for a turn, while lightly laying the rein on her neck, and having her work mostly from my legs instead of my rein cues. Currently we've been doing mostly half and half. I've been working seriously on using my legs every time I ask for something, I sometimes have a tendency to act like I'm legless and I forget to use my legs but I've been working on that.
Would you fix the direct reining issue first or the neck reining one first? I'm leaning towards the direct reining issue just because neck reining is more of an icing on the cake sorta thing...right?
An interesting aside: I guess this shows me what Lacey responds the most to, leg cues over rein cues. Because every time I neck rein her I use leg, and she never knew how to neck rein before... And now she's basically trained herself out of the rein cues she's been used to her whole life, in favor of where my legs are telling her to go. Interesting poneh. Haha