Training Horse to Bend/Flex?
 
 

       The Horse Forum > Training Horses > Horse Training

Training Horse to Bend/Flex?

This is a discussion on Training Horse to Bend/Flex? within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Horse pulls and wont flex bend
  • Bend her neck

Like Tree4Likes
  • 3 Post By Skyseternalangel
  • 1 Post By mildot

 
LinkBack Thread Tools
    02-05-2012, 01:36 PM
  #1
Foal
Training Horse to Bend/Flex?

Hello, yesterday I was riding my mare and realized that she does not turn very well. She is coming 7 this year and was originally started as a driving horse when she was 2 and I have been riding her for about 2 years. I think the problem is that she doesn't bend her neck/body. She seems very stiff and won't turn very tight. I use the reins and leg pressure. She moves from pressure but does not bend in. I was also working with her on the ground getting her to do tighter circles and pulling a bit on her head to see if she would bend, but she just doesn't seem to. Any tips or training exercises that would help? Thanks!
     
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
    02-05-2012, 06:49 PM
  #2
Trained
Hi,

As you've been riding her for 2 years & only just noticed this, is it a recent thing do you think? I'd want to rule out/treat any physical issues that might be causing it; saddlefit, back or neck probs, teeth/mouth/bit, foot probs, etc.

Then I'd start on the ground, teaching her first to bend her neck without moving her body. Assuming you haven't yet, I'd teach her to move different parts of her body from direct pressure - eg. Move your shoulder when I signal there. You exaggerate the position, to make it as easy for the horse to work out as possible, but as she gets it, gradually move those signals more towards where your feet will be when riding, so you can easily transfer it to riding. When mounted I'd do the above, so she learns to move different bits of her body for you & you can ask her to 'bend' around your leg & such.
     
    02-05-2012, 07:26 PM
  #3
Showing
Where I started with my horse was his jaw. Is your horse soft in his mouth or does he have a tendency to clench or grip or "lock" ?

My horse had all of the above, so a few times I'd encourage him to release his jaw in the same manner I would putting the bit in. Finger in the corner of the mouth, wiggle until they open their mouth, lick and chew. I made sure that he was comfortable doing that. Then I did it with a bit inside. I'd softly "play" with one rein as I would my finger, until he released, licked and chewed. Over time, I upped the anty and encouraged him to keep "soft" by flexing him at his poll when he was standing still. I'd start with his stiffer side first, and once he got that down, I'd go to his easier side.

I did carrot exercises, slowly building him up to where he flexes all the way behind him and can touch his own barrel with his nose. Down between his legs (remember this is over time, and done very very very slowly) and stretch out by holding the carrot piece out far in front but asking him to not move his feet.

Back to under saddle, I'd warm him up on a nice loose rein. First we'd walk around on the rail without any kind of contact or bit interference. Then we'd go into nice loose serpentines, circles, figure eights, and whatnot. I'd keep encouraging him to stretch down and soften that bit in his mouth. Back then I would comb the reins because that's the only way he'd relax. Now I just "sponge" the reins and ask him to move forward and down.

Hope that helps.
     
    02-13-2012, 10:58 PM
  #4
Foal
Thanks guys!

The day after I found this problem, she was totally fine. So I think that the bit of groundwork the day before may have helped or it might have been the saddle of something, or she tends to be lazy lots of times.
But after that, I just do some turning exercises before I get on her and she's good.
:)
     
    02-14-2012, 05:54 AM
  #5
Banned
All virtually all horses are stiffer to one side than the other.

All I can add is that lots of warmup and stretching before riding are necessary, and usually do two stretches in the stiff direction for every one you do on the soft side.
Skyseternalangel likes this.
     
    02-14-2012, 08:15 AM
  #6
Banned
She may need her teeth done.
If her teeth are fine then doing a lot of bend and flex work should help.
Of course she could bracing against you and being stiff because she is not liking the bit or other pain issues.
I would keep and eye on her and take it easy, slow work and really make sure she is placing her body in the correct position for turn....you know correct leads and feet placement...make sure she isn't favorong anything or dropping her shoulder or anything like that.
If all is ruled out then I would just work on the basics and give it time....she may have just been having a bad/off day.
     

Quick Reply
Please help keep the Horse Forum enjoyable by reporting rude posts.
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.


Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
I'm not sure how to make my horse bend in a circle? apachewhitesox Horse Training 18 02-17-2011 07:45 AM
Acti-flex Senior vs. Flex-Max RebeccaMI Horse Nutrition 0 01-25-2011 02:55 PM
Bend in a horse, is it a real thing? tinyliny Dressage 2 10-29-2010 10:49 AM
My horse won't bend at the neck Citrus Horse Training 8 08-27-2010 02:20 PM
Getting horse to bend madisonfriday Horse Training 10 04-29-2009 09:06 AM



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:38 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0