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post #1 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
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need advice

help! I can't get my horse to canter. He is 3 almost 4 I have been training him but the one thing I can't seem to get him to do is canter. Our trots are nice and so is the walk. I can get him to canter a lap or two on the lunge when I am on him after popping him a few times with the whip on the butt, but the other day I took him out to see if I could get him to canter without it, thinking maybe the circle was too small, but when I got him out there he wouldnt even attempt to canter. I need advice to help me get him cantering. Can anyone help me please?
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post #2 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 01:22 PM
slc
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Bigger circle, letting him go faster, not going into the corners of the arena, getting out of the smaller circle such as a round pen-type setup, more urging.

If he does not pick up the canter on the longe line at the word 'canter' there's not much point in trying to get him to do it under saddle. You say 'canter' when you're longeing him, then of course if he doesn't canter right when you say canter, you tap him with the longe whip on his hind legs above the hock or just on his rump more behind him, to urge him to canter. The first couple times on the longe they tend to trot fairly fast and finally canter, that's fine.

So don't try to canter under saddle til he knows the word and does it every time you ask on the longe line in both directions.

You just take what you taught him on the longe and basically do exactly the same when you are sitting in the saddle. Say canter, tap with your whip, he canters.

Oh and if you try to take your young horse off the circle they tend to fall back into trot, you do better if you canter on a circle just at first.

Hope it works out for you.
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post #3 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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he goes to a kiss sound on the lunge just fine. But when I get on him is when he just refuses to canter
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post #4 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 01:32 PM
mls
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What kind of horse? Does he canter when he is on turn out?
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post #5 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 01:34 PM Thread Starter
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he is a cross between a paint and a quarter horse, and yes he does
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post #6 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 05:42 PM
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You need to ride him out on the trail. That's what these horses were bred to do. If you can ride with someone else that you trust he will follow. Try getting him to follow up a hill for some reason that works really well maybe 'cause they can balance themselves better. A lot of quarterhorses/paints are not that great in an enclosed area - they need to have more stimulation to encourage them to go.
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post #7 of 13 Old 02-25-2011, 05:46 PM
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Another thing to consider is what is your body position when you ask for the canter? Are you leaning forward? If so lean back just slightly behind the vertical. I think that leaning forward causes some conflict in their minds because the weight is going in front of the drive line. Just another thought.

I do agree with MLS in that you need to get it really good on the ground first. Do lots of trot canter transitions so that you only canter for a stride or two. That makes it more fun and then you can slowly increase the number of strides. This improves his balance and will make it easier for him to carry you. Hopefully you are not too big for him because if you are that will make it really hard too.
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post #8 of 13 Old 02-26-2011, 06:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLovedOne View Post
I think that leaning forward causes some conflict in their minds because the weight is going in front of the drive line.
unless your sitting in front of the wither, you aren't in front of the drive line. But leaning forward will possibly impair their scapula movement, which often times makes horses unhappy about cantering.

Shim your saddle (even if you think it fits properly, shim it). This will provide more freedom of movement, more than likely leading to a happy canter.

This is assuming the problem isn't based on poor training.
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post #9 of 13 Old 02-26-2011, 08:20 AM
slc
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do you try making that same sound you do on the longe, when you're in the saddle?

Not everyone has access to trails, especially in February.
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post #10 of 13 Old 02-26-2011, 08:51 AM
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When asking for the canter, do a half-halt first, so he is more balanced and hence able to make the transition.
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