Too many gears... first time working a gaited horse - help!
I've been riding and training for a number of years but my latest project's got me stumped - I've been asked to work with a six year old Tennessee Walker mare who was cowboy broke and has never really been taught to use her gaits in an arena... and now the poor thing is expected to. She seems to have a walk, running walk, pace, and a four beat canter, but tends to get flustered and swap between them at random. The goal is to have her consistently use a balanced running walk for her young owner, instead of tossing her head and pacing.
I know enough to keep her reasonably balanced, staight, and be able to quiet her down when she gets flustered and starts flailing around. She has been improving and settling but I am wondering if there are any specific types of exercises anyone could recommend? Any particular cues or activities we could use to help us would be really appreciated.
I'm really enjoying her but I don't want to confuse her any more than she already is! Riding the many-geared beast is new to me.