Riding a horse at 1 and 1/2 years old!!!=/ - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 25 Old 12-11-2008, 10:42 PM Thread Starter
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Yea I know there is soooo much more stuff they could be doing! I have done so much stuff with my gelding like the typical ground manners and then setting up trail obstacles and going through them and applying groundwork to that and going on trail walks through the trails, and also just getting him used to everything like ill bring plastic bags and everything out so he wont be afraid of stuff.

My point is there is so much stuff you need to be doing with a young horse to get them ready to be ridden that there is no reason to be riding at 1 and a half years old its just un called for.!
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post #12 of 25 Old 12-12-2008, 06:35 PM
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That is terrible. I believe that some of the problems come from lots of show trainers. Many of them start colts when they are long yearlings so that they will be ready for the show ring when they are 2. They also do this with race horses and many other breeds and disciplines. Then they all wonder why the horse is crippled from arthritis at 8 or even sooner. If you are going to start a horse at 2, the put a light saddle on them and pony them on very short trail rides; no lungeing, maybe very little riding (5 or 10 minutes) and only to get them to start being responsive to leg and rein cues. :"( It makes me sad to see so many young horses started so soon and unusable by the time that they should be in the prime of their life and peak of their ability.
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post #13 of 25 Old 12-12-2008, 08:03 PM
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Al lot of stock horse people ride yearlings because they show them in two year old U/S classes. I'm not saying its acceptable... then again look at all the lame stock horses you see.. I'm sure there is a correlation at some point.

I'm not sure of his training history positively, but my gelding was probably broke around 2.. He's 25 years old right now and still going very strong. I started my mare at 3, (she was a month over 3) but I wish I could have started her earlier, maybe riding her by November of 07.. but I didn't even own her at that point.. so.

I agree that anything under 2 is bad, unless its driving.. My trainer drives hers as mid to late yearlings.. and ride as mid-late two year olds. Her horses have always been sound and stable minded, relatively spook free (depends on their personality and genetics though).. She has two senior horses that were born and raised on the farm, she didn't start them but they were probably started the same way she starts hers.. they are 26 and 28 I think, although one has Cushing's and the other has a sore hind ankle (ocaisionally goes lame)... they are still sound and giving w/t/c lessons to younger kids. They are in much better shape than a lot of horses a decade younger!

I think the longer you wait, the worse off you are in general.. That is not to say you should be riding at under 2 either! However it is in practice/tradition for certain breeds/circuits.
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post #14 of 25 Old 12-12-2008, 09:25 PM
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Sad thing is alot of people dont know what they are doing and screw up their horses. And I wish we could change their minds, but unfortinatly its a hard thing to do. I personally think the best age to start riding them is at least 3 but before that light ground work and handleing is one of the best ways to prepair a young horse for riding.
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post #15 of 25 Old 12-12-2008, 11:59 PM
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I have to say the best, absolute best way, is to long line them before you ride them. They understand basic cues and listen to your voice much much better when they've already heard and registered Woah. I don't think I could have broke my filly without the couple months I spent long lining her first, since she was a bit of a handful at the time.
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post #16 of 25 Old 12-17-2008, 01:21 AM
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Okay, I totally agree with not trying to ride a horse until at least 2.5 years old, and even then, I'd find the lightest rider I could. I'm 117 myself so its not that bad if the horse is growing solidly. What does everyone think about starting a yearling with nothing but a light saddle, with nothing on it, so they can get used to something on their back? Or even a bareback pad to begin with. I've seen people do that, then add grain baqgs tied to the saddle after a few months to slowly build the weight so they can get feel for when the horse is ready for a rider's weight. They seem to think it helps transition form ground work to saddle. Any thoughts on that process? Oh pulling for that matter, ohw old woul you all suggest they need to be to ask them to try moving, say, 50 pounds?

The best index to a person's character is (a) how he treats people who can't do him any good, and (b) how he treats people who can't fight back ---Abigail Van Buren
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post #17 of 25 Old 12-17-2008, 10:13 AM
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Between 1 and 2 is a GREAT time to get a horse really broke. I'd saddle break em at 1 1/2 and work on ground driving and suppleness throughout their 2 year old year. Start riding more consistantly as a late 2 year old and then put them on a work schedule as a 3 year old. You can get on a horse at a young age and not hurt them long term. Certainly does NOT mean they should be worked like a 6 year old...but they are capable of walking around and just getting used to the added weight.
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post #18 of 25 Old 12-17-2008, 10:14 AM
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That is rediculous, honestly. I would never do that. I dont think horses should be seriously "started" till the age of three, and then they can start being ridden more consistantly with harder workouts at the age of four and five. They need times to be kids, just like some of the other posts said. Look at the Lippizaners: they arent taken from the fields till they are around four or five. They wait until they are mature enough to take the training that is about to be taught to them, since it requires strength and maturity to perform all the acrobatics above the ground. When the Lippizaners are just being started under saddle, the Thoughbreds are finnishing up their training as racehorses and going to stud and breeding farms as brood animals. Some breeds are started at different times in their training. The Tennesee Walkers are started quite young sometimes, I think around one and a half even in some cases. I may be wrong though shock:

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post #19 of 25 Old 12-17-2008, 10:15 AM
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we start our babies at 2 if they are ready. Just "start" them tho...usually only means lunging and putting a saddle on there back then lunging and thingsl ike that. Usually dont end up riding them till they are almost 3. 1.5 years old is pretty early!
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post #20 of 25 Old 12-17-2008, 11:49 AM
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I bought a horse at auction that had 90days professional training, was used in cattle penning and trail rides. Didn't know til I got her papers that she had just turned 3 by the time she was 5 she is so arthritic that she can only have a occasional ride or be riden by a child for a short time, nothing more than at a walk. We never rode her much after we had bought her as we bought her also for a brood mare and we got two beautiful colts, before she went lame
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