from trot to canter

       The Horse Forum > Training Horses > Horse Training

from trot to canter

This is a discussion on from trot to canter within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

LinkBack Thread Tools
    07-07-2008, 04:56 PM
from trot to canter

My horse is horrible at transitioning from trot to canter. I ask him on one side of the arena and he wont get it until the other side of the arena no matter what I do. He gets it fine on the lunge, all I have to do is ask for it and he gets it almost instantly but when I try to do it while riding him he gets all stubborn. He does that extended trot until he other side of the arena and with a LOT of encourgement he'll finally get it. He's fine once he's in the canter its just getting it that's the problem? Anyone have any ideas on how to fix it?
Sponsored Links
    07-07-2008, 05:34 PM
Keep in mind, its easier for a young or unfit horse to pick up the canter on a bend (like a circle, when you lunge). Not only are their bodies in the proper frame to take up the 3-beat gait more easily, but they have to carry themselves more to achieve the circle, as opposed to stringing out and leaning on you. If you are still having problems, even on the circle, examine your riding: are your aids strong and clear enough? Are you leaning forward at all? Are you asking at the right time?
    07-07-2008, 06:18 PM
As said before, exaimine the way you are riding him. Make sure that you are asking him correctly and that he is in a bend. Make sure you are not leaning to one side or another, etc.
After you have checked yourself, if that is not the problem, then concentrate on the horse. Some horses have a harder time picking up the canter than others, either because they really have not developed the muscle to do so or they are lazy or something is hurting them, etc. Do some uphill work and let him develop the muscles in his back end. Just start by doing it a couple times a week and it will make a big difference. Try asking him to canter over a pole. Set them out and say ok we are going to canter over the pole, at first ask him early and let him run into it, then once he starts getting the hang of it decrease the space in which you are asking him. Make sure to not canter over the pole everytime. Sometimes throw in a walk or trot, just so he knows that poles do not always mean canter.
If there is any pain, you would most likely see it in his expression. If his ears are back and his tail is swishing, then that's a sign that you may have an issue.
    07-07-2008, 06:48 PM
I'll check my position but I usually have a really nice seat. I just think he needs to learn to canter when I ask him. He's still really green, im training him myself. He's deffinitley got butt muscle, that's not an issue. We do a lot of poles and occasionally do some hill work. I don't think its a pain issue because as soon as he gets it his ears prick forward and he calms down. He likes cantering he just doesn't like me pushing him into it. I'll deffinitely do the pole thing though. I think that will make a big difference. Thanks for the advice!
    07-07-2008, 07:44 PM
I find that sometimes when asking for speed I brace myself in an attempt to get ready for it. Perhaps that is the cue that the horse is picking up on and its canceling out the canter cue. He may just be confused. I'd check to make sure you're not sending mixed signals. Just my 2 cents.
    07-07-2008, 11:58 PM
I would make sure you ask for the canter when your horse is in a slow trot, and every time he goes into that fast trot, just slow him down. Also check yourself and make sure that your not doin anythin that may cause him to not proceed into the lope. Also have you tried Kiss/kick/and maybe a slap with the crop all at once..

Hope that helps,
    07-08-2008, 12:17 AM
Yes, I got him to do a perfect transition with a crop in my hand. I think he was just honestly being lazy at not wanting to canter. But he learned to pay attention quick with a crop in my hand. I didnt even need to use after the first couple of times.
    07-08-2008, 04:35 AM
Try talking to your horse, use voice commands, you say he responds on the lunge so use voice when you ride.. if he rushs forwards into a fast not continue to ask him to canter, check him back, steady him, and ask ask.. it may tke 15 mins of checking him back and asking again but otherwise he's just learning to run into canter
    07-08-2008, 09:08 AM
Just thought I'd toss my 2 cents in.

I have a "lazy" horse that was hard to motivate to canter . Usually once he'd made that transition a couple of times, he'd warm up to it, or the idea of it. Anyhoo, when I was training him (maybe it's my training that made him lazy, too :roll: ) he was slow to learn his leads and to figure out how to not cross fire. He was what I call a late bloomer (so much for being a descendant of race horses ). It took a lot of conditioning to get him to figure out how to pick up a canter. I don't know if I would make a huge deal out of it just yet, just keep building those muscles and don't quit trying until he gives you a few strides at least.

I found that slapping with the reins on the rear did more to motivate that anything, much like you would use a bat. I got careless with my spurs once out of frustration and he bucked, reminding me that wasn't very nice. But I always used my regular cue before resorting to the rein slap (and I have really long reins, so I knew I wasn't pulling his mouth at the same time) and he got it after a while.

Also, I find if I pushed him into a fast trot and did't LET him canter, he suddenly found that trotting is a lot harder than cantering and willingly wanted to breakover into a canter . A little reverse physcology.

My lazy horse still requires more effort to get into that first canter of the day than some horses, but we're talking just a firmer leg cue and a split second slower to pick it up, not a significant delay. He just makes SURE I want to run first. :roll:

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

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


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

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:09 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0