I finally had time to watch the video... He is doing exactly what he is supposed to be doing to teach a 'resistance- free' turn-around. Everything he is doing is to teach the horse to give up any resistance and stiffness, to bend the correct amount through the body, to 'track up' (hind feet following exactly in the line of the tracks the front feet made), to keep the inside shoulder up and 'open' and to be ready to correctly turn around when the outside rein is tightened to 'block' the outside shoulder from going forward. If you will look at the result, it is perfect. When he feels all of the resistance is gone, the horse is ready to keep his head where he wants it, keep his inside shoulder up and maintain his forward impulsion so that when he blocks that outside shoulder, the horse will continue with the exact same cadence and exact same bend -- only he will turn around while the inside hind foot is firmly anchored. You cannot ask for a better result that he is getting from this colt. He is happy, his tail is quiet, he is not resisting anywhere and he is doing it with no outside spur and no antagonism from his rider.
He is not teaching 'rubber-necking'. The outside shoulder is not pushing out of the prescribed circle. He is giving his face to the trainer willingly. The trainer is 'picking' at him until he gives him more bend through the neck than he is asking for. He is wanting the horse to NOT straighten back up and NOT try to escape the bend he is asking for. That would be the resistance you are trying to get rid of. Horses that have a lot of 'push-back' and keep trying to escape the exercise, are not as good a prospect or are not ready to ask for the turn-around. It is just right if you get this kind of turn-around when you first ask. He is doing it just right.
'Rubber-necking' is something a horse initiates when it is trying to escape the rider's intent. 'Softness' is what you get when the horse is accepting the 'over-flexion' because you are asking for it. This horse is very obviously between the riders legs so it is not rubber-necking at all.
Let me give you some of the reasoning behind the amount of flexion and bend being asked for. You always 'over-ask'. You always ask for more than you need and more than you will accept in the finished product. You want horses to lope on a prescribed circle until you ask it to leave the circle and go straight or go somewhere else. If you set a horse on a circle,it should stay on that circle with the correct bend and no resistance for 100 circles if that is what you want -- and he should it on a loose inside rein You cannot have it straightening itself out until you ask it to do that. Exercises like the one he is doing, teach this. He is being 'abrupt' every time the horse does not leave its head where he put it. He is also 'dropping' the rein instead of just moving his hand forward when the horse has earned a loose rein by doing the right thing. These are all of the things he wants to in place before he asks the horse to turn around.
This guy can come and ride any of my horses any time he wants to.
Last edited by Cherie; 09-22-2012 at 08:09 PM.