I think I literally did a million trot to lope, lope to trot transitions. And half-halts. Now when I slightly pick up on my left rein and sit back, he thinks we're going to do something so he slows his feet down.
And if you don't lope her alot then it's probably hard for her to get her balance. Once you work it into your routine then she will realize "oh man it's so much easier to lope off slow and steady".
I agree with everyone, especially smrobs!!! Great advice here. I'm working with the same thing with my mare. She's real speedy, so we have been doing lots of circles, trotting the circles (small ones) and half halts when she gets speedy. She responds real well when I sit back on my pockets, to slow her down. She slows down to this real nice jog that I barely move, and she's not gaited at all, just a regular quarter horse.
My horse has the same problem. She likes to stomp her leading foot at the canter for whatever reason...
I'm going to have to try these, and look into dressage half halts (I've been taught my whole life by a billion trainers that half halt is just pulling on a the reins, but not a steady pull and not with the intention of stopping completely.) This thread is helpful!
Well, half halting is not really just a "dressage thing" for lack of a better term. ;)
It's really kind of self-explanatory. You have the general gist. When I half halt, I sit deeply in the saddle, like I would when I do a full halt, but not quite as strong. I apply squeeze-release pressure on the outside rein. And that's not the only way one can do a half-halt - just check out google, I'm sure they have loads of methods. But that is what works for my pony and I. There is not a full down transition, rather, just the gait of the horse slowing down a bit and collecting - but make sure you keep your leg on so the horse doesn't loose the power either!
But half-halts are not just pulling on the reins a little. You should be reacting first with your seat. They are also used not only to slow the horse, but to also give the horse a subtle "heads up" that you are about to ask for something new. So if I am going to make a circle, a couple of strides before we get there, I just give the horse a little hint that we are doing something new, and usually the transition to the new thing is much smoother when the horse has some "warning".
A great exercise for practicing half halts, among many other things it will improve, is extending and collecting the trot. I will pick out certain points at which to extend or collect. So, at one place I will do a slower, collected trot. At the next point I might do a nice, steady medium trot. Then, at another point, I will go up into a faster extended trot where the stride is long and I have my horse really stepping out. And in all orders and patterns of this. When I make the transition from, say, my steady medium trot to slower collected trot, the half-halt is what gets me there for that. So that you make not a full transition, but a change in tempo of the current gait.