07-01-2010, 01:13 AM
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Suggestions on encouraging use of hind-quarters
Hey, I'm on the lookout for exercises. I've been working on one of my trainer's project horses for about six months. She's a seven-year-old paint, over sixteen hands high, and I'm training her just to generally be a good horse, but I also show her in dressage, and some little over-fences classes. She's basically well-built, uphill, sturdy legs, acceptable neck and all of that good stuff. She's going well forward, which was a struggle to start with, and she understands bit pressure and is pretty light to those aids. She tends to be a slow-moving horse, but again, I've worked extensively on making her move out. I've done a lot of work to get her shoulders upright and body straight, and lots of untracking, shoulders-in, half-pass-ish movements, that sort of thing to get her more flexible. I feel like I've run into a rut I see with a lot of riders and horses, focussing on what's in front of me and forgetting the motor. Her front half is going well but we don't have enough drive from the hind end. Her lack of back-end use is very evident at the canter, where she can be soft on the bit although her gait is generally sloppy and lacking propulsion. Long story short, I was wondering if anyone had any advice for getting her to really use her hind-quarters to propel her forward.