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Softening up a board....

This is a discussion on Softening up a board.... within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

     
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        02-18-2010, 09:52 PM
      #11
    Banned
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by riccil0ve    
    DO NOT tie your horses head around. It's appalling, and completely unnecessary.
    Done with baling twine and done correctly, tying a horses head around is a perfectly humane way to teach yielding to pressure. I've seen it posted by reliable posters on this forum.

    I've been taught since probably the fifth grade to stretch before a workout, but after warming up. Since I tighten my cinch gradually anyway, adding some stretching in wouldn't be a problem. I'll have to figure out a way to do it sans treats.
         
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        02-19-2010, 12:04 AM
      #12
    Trained
    Oh dear. What do you suppose might happen if you tie your horses head around and he freaks out? Broken neck, broken back, broken legs, permenently spooked horses terrified of being tied up... the list is endless.

    Plus, how is that supposed to supple a horse? Woohoo look at me I can rip my horses head around and bind it there. Then I get on and he won't bend anyway. How does tying his head around condition the muscles and to strengthen and stretch?

    It is the sideways equivalent of rolkur.

    But hey, each to their own. Unfortunately everyone wants things NOW without putting in the weeks, months, of work. And this is the result.
         
        02-19-2010, 03:56 AM
      #13
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kayty    
    Oh dear. What do you suppose might happen if you tie your horses head around and he freaks out? Broken neck, broken back, broken legs, permenently spooked horses terrified of being tied up... the list is endless.

    Plus, how is that supposed to supple a horse? Woohoo look at me I can rip my horses head around and bind it there. Then I get on and he won't bend anyway. How does tying his head around condition the muscles and to strengthen and stretch?

    It is the sideways equivalent of rolkur.

    But hey, each to their own. Unfortunately everyone wants things NOW without putting in the weeks, months, of work. And this is the result.
    Thanks for replying, Kayty, so I didn't have to. =]
         
        02-19-2010, 03:58 AM
      #14
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by justsambam08    
    I've been taught since probably the fifth grade to stretch before a workout, but after warming up. Since I tighten my cinch gradually anyway, adding some stretching in wouldn't be a problem. I'll have to figure out a way to do it sans treats.
    Ahem. A warmed up muscle is a warm muscle. My information is still accurate; do not stretch cold muscles.
         
        02-19-2010, 04:56 AM
      #15
    Trained
    If done correctly tying a horses head around does help them figure out how to yield to pressure. The way I do it is to pull my stirrup forward and tie the rein or lead to the stirrup then when I release the stirrup the wieght of the stirrup takes the slack out of the rein. The horse can stand all day with his head straight but he has to hold the stirrup. It doesn't take more than 5 minutes and they are bending to get the relief. If something spooks them they can pull their head straight with no problem. I do very little of this. Only a couple of times on the average horse so that they can figure out what I want without having to worry about me up on their back.

    In the case of the OP I think I would work alot on lateral flexion and teach teh horse to follow his nose and bend around my leg. Pull one rein to your front pocket and hold light but steady pressure on it untill his feet stop moving and he puts a tiny bit of slack in the reins then release completely. Do it a few times on one side then switch to the other. Don't give up and hang in there for as long as it takes. If he doesn't seem to be looking for relief increase the pressure a little. Once he is fairly supple that way do alot of direction changes. I hate to ride in circles so I wouldn't do too many of those but figure eights and spirals will help alot.
         
        02-19-2010, 10:20 AM
      #16
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kevinshorses    
    If done correctly tying a horses head around does help them figure out how to yield to pressure. The way I do it is to pull my stirrup forward and tie the rein or lead to the stirrup then when I release the stirrup the wieght of the stirrup takes the slack out of the rein. The horse can stand all day with his head straight but he has to hold the stirrup. It doesn't take more than 5 minutes and they are bending to get the relief. If something spooks them they can pull their head straight with no problem. I do very little of this. Only a couple of times on the average horse so that they can figure out what I want without having to worry about me up on their back.
    But WHY!? When you can simply get in the saddle and using the reins to encourage your horse to bend to the inside and to the outside? WHY when you can simply do carrot stretches after a ride to loosen up the neck and make them more limber? How do you teach your dog to lie down? By ripping his feet out from under him? Sure, he may learn, but he can also learn by simply placing a treat on the ground with your hand over and not giving it to him until he lays down. It takes more time, but in the end, you have a better adapted animal with more pleasant experiences. Training takes TIME. Tying their head is a quick fix, and even then, how are they supposed to associate a tied head to the cues from a rider on their back to do the same thing? A true bend takes more than bringing a rein to your knee. In fact, your inside rein should be hardly anything more than decoration.

    I usually agree with you Kevin, but in this case, I most definitely do not when there are other, better methods to get a better result.
         
        02-19-2010, 10:26 AM
      #17
    Banned
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kevinshorses    
    If done correctly tying a horses head around does help them figure out how to yield to pressure. The way I do it is to pull my stirrup forward and tie the rein or lead to the stirrup then when I release the stirrup the wieght of the stirrup takes the slack out of the rein. The horse can stand all day with his head straight but he has to hold the stirrup. It doesn't take more than 5 minutes and they are bending to get the relief. If something spooks them they can pull their head straight with no problem. I do very little of this. Only a couple of times on the average horse so that they can figure out what I want without having to worry about me up on their back.
    Thank you kevin. I would have had to go find a post by Riosdad otherwise!

    I really do object to that being referred to as the "sideways version of rollkur", the only thing it would force him to do is use his brain and figure out how to make himself more comfortable. If he would rather stand there and be uncomfortable, he could do that, or he could just turn his head a smidge and release the pressure. I was not talking about cranking his nose back to his hip, I was talking about the equivalent of a direct-reined turn. Only with baling twine. And with me on the ground.

    Also kevin, that's exactly what I'm looking for. Lateral flexion ground exercises other than carrot stretches. I want to be able to get on him and do the figure eights, but it would be an "S" with a straight line down the side. I already have the book I mentioned before, and it does have some nice suggestions for getting him stretchy and getting him back into shape. So we'll see how that goes.
         
        02-19-2010, 10:29 AM
      #18
    mls
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by riccil0ve    
    But WHY!? When you can simply get in the saddle and using the reins to encourage your horse to bend to the inside and to the outside? Training takes TIME. Tying their head is a quick fix, and even then, how are they supposed to associate a tied head to the cues from a rider on their back to do the same thing? A true bend takes more than bringing a rein to your knee. In fact, your inside rein should be hardly anything more than decoration.
    I agree. Tying is a quick and not necessarily correct fix. In this case the horse is stiff. Tying him around will bend him but not supple him. Part of the stiff process that needs to be worked out is also getting the horse to step under. I don't see how tying a horse to look at the saddle or surcingle for any length of time teachs that. Working in hand or riding allows the interaction and the give and take.

    Also agree with the trot circles and transistions. Walk, circle, trot, circle.
         
        02-19-2010, 10:37 AM
      #19
    Banned
    He does track up under himself already quite nicely, he almost completely oversteps his fronts with his hinds, but he'll probably never be able to completely because he has a long back.
         
        02-19-2010, 12:14 PM
      #20
    Trained
    Sometimes you need to get the bend BEFORE you get in the saddle. I t helps alot when your horse can give to the rein before you get on. The way I do it with the stirrup, the horse starts to follow its nose and bending really soft. I invite anybody that thinks it's unnecessary to try it and see the results. I don't tie to the D ring, I tie to the stirrup and it does the exact same thing as pulling the rein from the saddle. They can take as much rein as they want but the relief won't come untill they flex enough to drop the stirrup. If you want to get on a horse that doesn't bend then go ahead you will probably get away with it. I have gotten in bad situations that way enough that I choose not to get on a horse unless I have some bend in them. Some horses I can stand next to and get plenty of bend and I'll do it that way but some horses do better when they figure it out on their own. You have to know your horse and decide what will work well for you. Sometimes I will tie a stirrup up and go catch another horse then switch sides while I saddle the new horse. I think if you try it you will find that it is not cruel or ineffective. The horse only has one thing to think about instead of worrying about where I am and what I'm going to be doing next.
         

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