Ughhh!! Another fall! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 06-10-2011, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
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Ughhh!! Another fall!

So, we have continued with our horse trainer, and my daughter has gotten on the pony, and been riding it around, with the trainer telling her what to do, when to turn, to keep her moving, etc. The pony lunges well, can be lead around well, stands for work on her hooves well, and seems to be doing good. Yesterday, my daughter -9 y.o. was just casually riding around the pasture, and the pony would stop once in awhile and she was told to keep it going, don't let it stop unless she stops it, etc. The pony was acting quite lazy, then all of a sudden, my daughter kicked it slightly harder-and the pony bolted! We were standing there helpless, and my daughter basically bailed off, and fell to the side. She was okay, always wears a helmet, but it was scary! She didn't know how to stop her, and panicked, so she tried to jump off.

I am getting really discouraged! This pony seems great most of the time, but if I can't trust it, I am not sure what to do. Is this normal, and something to expect? My daughter had not had practice moving very fast with this pony, so she was caught off guard, and couldn't remember what to do to try and stop, that's why she just fell off. Ughh! Is this the wrong pony, or is this something we just have to be aware of with any pony/horse we ride? We are enjoying having a pony, and loving it, and learning so much but I don't want to put my daughter in danger.

Thank you for any advice!!
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post #2 of 9 Old 06-10-2011, 12:16 PM
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My best advice is to work with a trainer who will teach you daughter how to fall correctly and how to regain control if something unexpected happens.
My first horse threw me at least once per ride for a year - working with a trainer was the only saving grace, and I learned very valuable lessons during that time. It could have ended VERY badly if I hadn't been working with a great trainer.
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post #3 of 9 Old 06-10-2011, 12:17 PM
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There's a reason 'pony' is a 4-letter word, you know.

It sounds more as if the pony's bolting was caused by your daughter's gigging him in the sides too hard, than him actually being a bad boy.

Are they both greenies? If so, green + green = black and blue. Reputable trainers don't like it when parents buy untrained ponies for their newbie rider children.

You want the truth? You can't HANDLE the truth!
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post #4 of 9 Old 06-10-2011, 12:31 PM
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I think falling off in the beginning is to be expected, and perhaps a lot. It is usually not a big deal, especially froma pony and being young enough to roll and bounce. NOt to sound cavalier, but it just is part of the territory, so if you can't deal with it, best not to ride out in the open.

In fact, for a green rider who might be of a more cautious nature, sticking to a soft sandy arena indoors for awhile, 'til the seat is secure, would be good advice.

I am sure your daughter was scared, but the less you make of it, the easier it will be for her to brush it off and keep going.
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post #5 of 9 Old 06-10-2011, 12:33 PM
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I understand to an extent how you guys feel. When I first got my horse it seemed like every ride resulted in a fall at first, rather it was my horse falling down with me or me just stupidly losing my balance . I think for me I just had to gain my confindence on my horse and just go with it and now 2 years later I haven't fallen off *knock on wood*. Even thou I always have close calls. I don't know the history of the rider or pony so I just suggest work on building confindence and working with the trainer. Good luck!

Chad Barnes 6-16-85~7-22-13
Hero Act - Thoroughbred Gelding ~ Gunner - Quarter Horse Gelding ~ John Deere - Mini Gelding
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post #6 of 9 Old 06-10-2011, 02:57 PM
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I would also advise keeping the rides in the arena (for now) until your daughter gains more experience.

At the very least, there's far less distance for the pony to bolt!

Leasing a spoiled rotten trail horse...pretty - but a brat!
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post #7 of 9 Old 06-11-2011, 03:35 PM
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Does the pony stop when he is lead or lunged when told too?
Definitely agree that your daughter should be riding in an arena or round pen.

Make the wrong things difficult and the right things easy ----- Ray Hunt
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post #8 of 9 Old 06-11-2011, 07:45 PM
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I don't know if there is any horse out there that is truly, honestly bomb proof. ANY horse has the capability of bolting, spooking, bucking, or acting up as long as they have a pulse. They are a prey animal after all. (I heard a famous trainer once say that ALL horses can bite and kick because ALL horses have teeth and legs. )

Maybe in his own sort of way the pony was trying to respond correctly and just over reacted. Kick does equal go in the world of kids and ponies!

I guess to answer your question, yes, any horse or pony has the potential to bolt or spook or just act up in general and throw someone. It is part of the risk of riding. Now I don't think it should be happening all the time- I come off maybe once a year (knock on wood) but I don't think you necessarily have a bad pony because he bolts once.

And a LOT of folks fall off just because they are beginners and haven't learned how to balance and control the horse well. I have had adults ride my horses who let the horse trot off with them and panic and think they are on a runaway. :roll: So some of that is not the horse/pony's fault, but rather that the rider is green and needs more practice.
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post #9 of 9 Old 06-11-2011, 08:32 PM
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Agree there is really no such thing as a completely bombproof horse. That being said, I was also the owner of a pony for 30 years until her death. I raised her from a new foal, and kept her for her entire life. I say this because she was given every opportunity to be a good dependable mount. She was a pain in the butt her entire life! She would scrape me off, throw me off, or just try and launch me off of her and then run away. I would go crying to my Father about it, and he would "work" with her. It got to the point she would see him coming for her and she would run to me! She finally decided (on most days) it was better to be ridden by me rather than disciplined by him. This was 1968, mind you and none of us knew everything about horses like we do today. We were pretty much inseperable, and she taught me to RIDE. By the time I got another horse, I could handle lots of other situations. People get ponies because they are smaller and their kids need something shorter to the ground. Still, I wonder if its really safer....

"If you talk to the animals they will talk with you and you will know each other. If you do not talk to them you will not know them and what you do not know, you will fear. What one fears, one destroys." - Chief Dan George

Last edited by jdw; 06-11-2011 at 08:39 PM.
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