Stopping - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 04-01-2011, 01:29 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
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Question Stopping

this is a general question of stopping on spot. I currently ride two horses frequently, one which I can stop on spot at trot or canter (sometimes he keeps stepping at a walk though...)
and one that I will be re starting his training TB, last year he would just try to run though the cues. He is very heavy in the canter when he gets excited (misses a lead) so I've just been working on the walk and trot (just started, two rides in so far) ( Last year he became very easy on the hands and stopped leaning as I did work with him a lot and we got to a nice place in his training but due to a small leg injury before the winter, he has been off) I am looking to go much slower in his training this time around and really nail the stopping cues before my friend rides Him though the woods. (its her horse btw)
( when my friend first got him he would drop his head to the ground when he wanted to stop working or wanted to run away with you)
^ sorry for so much extra explanation

I am looking for the exact cues and methods you guys use to achieve the perfect stop so I can help my friend. (ps, not emergency stops or one rein stops) Thanks everyone
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post #2 of 8 Old 04-01-2011, 03:01 PM
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First of all you should teach your horse to flex his head to where your knee would be and this is the one rein stop. That's why it's such a good thing to teach because you can practice it and the more you do the better it is. Teaching the stop is so easy but you have to do it on the ground first. It has nothing to do with bit pressure at all. You teach it by ground driving and just lifting the rein when you want the horse to stop and at the same time you stop. Horses want to move with you when you're on the ground like a foal beside it's dam. Once you've got it good on the ground it will be there in the saddle.
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post #3 of 8 Old 04-01-2011, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. from the ground he will always stop when I stop and he can flex to both sides just fine :) I'll keep working on it with the driving reins.
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post #4 of 8 Old 04-01-2011, 09:44 PM
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when you are riding: 1.start first at the walk,
a.take a deep seat,
b. say whoa! (loud and deep)
c. pull back on the reins
If he walked thru it.(takes a step after you've signaledto whoa) then back him up.
do this untill he stops when you say whoa. I like mine to stop when I take a deep seat so I make it a little bit harder. but once you can do it at a walk, take up a trot and teach it again, same process. then repeat at a canter/lope.
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post #5 of 8 Old 04-01-2011, 10:14 PM
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If you want to teach a horse an abrupt stop, not just a slowing through 2 downward transitions, you have to set him up like a western horse and teach him to 'stop' rather than slow down until he is stopped. Are you riding English? If so, abrupt stops are not what English horses are supposed to do.

If you want an abrupt stop, you should first, collect the horse, get his hind end underneath him and get him to lift his belly and elevate his shoulders. Thus, you 'set him up' to stop on his hind end. An abrupt stop on a horse's front end is rough on both him and you, so you have to teach him to stop on his back end.

You need to collect him and get his shoulders up and keep him up in the bridle. Then, you form a barrier with your hands but YOU DO NOT PULL. Sit as if you are going to stop abruptly, quit riding the horse forward and say "Whoa!" If you have done your homework and gotten this horse up off of his front end, he will stop without you pulling on him. This is what I have always done with my 2 year olds and they will stop on their hind ends with no pull on their faces and even start taking a step or two with their front feet when they stop. I do not go fast enough to get a slide and do not put any sliders on them until they are 3, but they will all lock up when I say "Whoa!" and quit riding them forward.

I save saying the word "Whoa!" for hard stops only. But, any horse that has been taught to stop, will develop very light, non-resistant downward transitions just from having a rider quit riding them forward and sitting in a stopping position. The key is to get them collected, get them to shift their weight back and keep their shoulders elevated before you ask for a stop or a downward transition. Then and only then can they get off of their front ends and stop rather than have to pulled down to a slower speed and finally stop, with great resistance. When you pull a horse into a stop, he will learn to push on the reins and will job his front feet into the ground and it won't look pretty and it won't feel good. You cannot 'pull' a horse off of his front end. You have to 'push' his hind end under him so he can stop properly.
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post #6 of 8 Old 04-02-2011, 12:50 AM
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Yes you do have to stop riding when you're in the saddle. That is, exhale or let all the air out of you and stop moving your hips/butt/legs/torso. Just stop your body.
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post #7 of 8 Old 04-02-2011, 04:50 AM
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i do what jwells84 does. but it has to be a very commited (front lightens and hind comes under) backup because otherwise what cherie said about the horse learning to push into the reins will happen.
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post #8 of 8 Old 04-02-2011, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone!! We have some issues with backing up too, so I'll be working on both for a while until he gets it :) Great advice!
eccodecco is offline  


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