Won't Walk/Trot Under Saddle
 
 

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Won't Walk/Trot Under Saddle

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  • How to make horse walk under saddle
  • Walk under saddle

 
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    07-28-2011, 01:29 PM
  #1
Weanling
Won't Walk/Trot Under Saddle

My friend and I are working at a small farm that does pony rides for the summer. The owners have asked us to get their horses working under saddle so they could possibly start doing some lessons.

There are 5 horses we are training, so the two of us have our hands full, although most of the horses are coming along nicely and turning into perfect mounts.

Except Sunshine. She is a palomino Arab X (I'm thinking either Welsh or QH), stands probably 13.2. I'm thinking she is probably around 8-10 yrs old. Has been doing pony rides at carnivals and fairs for the past year and is an angel. She is one of the sweetest horses I have met. Has perfect ground manners.

Now the problem:
She will not walk under saddle. As soon as I get on her and give her the cue to move forward, she breaks into a really uncomfortable trot. I can't post, because she takes that as a cue to canter. I can feel that she is waiting for me to loosen the reins just a tiny bit so she can canter/gallop. I am always putting pressure on the reins so she doesn't break away from me.
I spoke with her owners and I guess her last owner rode her like a 'cowboy'? Meaning he got on her and they went as fast as she could for as long as she could. She has been trained to explode as soon as someone is on her back.
I want to know how, or if, I can undo this.

Now she has not been ridden (besides pony rides) for over 2 years, so I understand that a little part of her behaviour under saddle is because she is green. She is in an O-ring snaffle right now, I don't know if changing to a harsher bit would make any difference, but I really don't think that would be fixing the problem, just covering it up.
I keep a really tight rein on her the whole time, because if I don't, she runs. I don't think it is to try to get the rider off her back either, as she has never bucked/reared, I believe she was just trained to be like this.
I have tried keeping a lot of leg on her, and very little, and she doesn't respond to either.

She is proving herself to be a very promising little hunter/jumper as she has a super cute jump, if only she would slow down and listen.
When my friend/partner rides her, she just lets her go, and then jumps her until she is dripping sweat to 'make her to listen since she has no energy', which I don't agree with, since that is pretty much letting Sunshine have her way.
When I get on her I try to get her to walk the whole time, and we will usually get a step or two before she breaks into the trot again.

Sorry for the novel, cookies to you if you read this far!
Any advice on how to get her to walk and trot under saddle like a normal horse and not feel like she has to 'go' as soon as you get on her?
     
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    07-28-2011, 01:55 PM
  #2
Super Moderator
If you use this green, spoiled half-broke horse for lessons, I hope your liability insurance covers 'gross negligence' because you will need it.

You need to sell this one for a jumping prospect if that is what she does and use the money to buy a quiet, settled, well-broke lesson horse to replace her with.
     
    07-28-2011, 02:26 PM
  #3
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cherie    
If you use this green, spoiled half-broke horse for lessons, I hope your liability insurance covers 'gross negligence' because you will need it.

You need to sell this one for a jumping prospect if that is what she does and use the money to buy a quiet, settled, well-broke lesson horse to replace her with.
OP clearly stated the ponies would possibly be used for lessons in the future. That is, of course, assuming they are SAFE enough for children to ride. I'm sure they're not prepared to put kids on the pony by themselves, reins in hand, at this current time (even the most nutso horses make good "ponies" at carnivals), which is what your post incinuates. Since the OP is not the owner, she is not at liberty to discuss whether the pony is to be sold or kept. Besides, "Should I sell this pony" was not the subject of the original post and you answered an unasked question.

OP. When you ask the pony to "slow down", how do you do so? By pulling straight back? With my mare I took her in a round pen and let her walk off on a loose rein. Whenever she picked up speed without me asking, I one-rein-stopped her and then went off in the opposite direction. Of course you'll need to master some finer things first, like lateral flexion and getting her to respond properly to the bit. I bet this pony could benefit from some groundwork as well.
     
    07-29-2011, 03:52 PM
  #4
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cherie    
If you use this green, spoiled half-broke horse for lessons, I hope your liability insurance covers 'gross negligence' because you will need it.

You need to sell this one for a jumping prospect if that is what she does and use the money to buy a quiet, settled, well-broke lesson horse to replace her with.

First of all, she is not my horse, which I stated. Second, she has a job and does well with it, so she does not need to be sold. Her owners would just like if she could be used as a lesson horse. If she can't, they have other horses that are coming along and will make great beginner level horses within a few weeks.
I asked for help with how to possibly get her to not feel the need to canter as soon as someone is on her back, not your opinion on what I should do with this horse that is not mine. If you have some training tips, please tell me, if not, I don't think you need to reply to this thread again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Equilove    

OP. When you ask the pony to "slow down", how do you do so? By pulling straight back? With my mare I took her in a round pen and let her walk off on a loose rein. Whenever she picked up speed without me asking, I one-rein-stopped her and then went off in the opposite direction. Of course you'll need to master some finer things first, like lateral flexion and getting her to respond properly to the bit. I bet this pony could benefit from some groundwork as well.

I ask her to slow down by pulling down and back on the reins, as well as sitting deeper in the saddle and leaning back.
I will try doing what you have said, using the one rein stop and then going in the opposite direction.
I'm thinking that she probably hasn't had any proper training, so she just has no idea what I want from her.
Maybe I should just focus on lunging and other ground work before we continue with the under saddle work.
     
    07-29-2011, 04:37 PM
  #5
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovesonya    
I ask her to slow down by pulling down and back on the reins, as well as sitting deeper in the saddle and leaning back.
I will try doing what you have said, using the one rein stop and then going in the opposite direction.
I'm thinking that she probably hasn't had any proper training, so she just has no idea what I want from her.
Maybe I should just focus on lunging and other ground work before we continue with the under saddle work.
Groundwork always helps. Get her vocal cues solid and work on yielding to the bit. If you get her flexing laterally, you will be able to perform the one rein stop more effectively. Good luck! :)
     
    07-29-2011, 08:27 PM
  #6
Weanling
Ok, thank you!
I really hope I get this mare going under saddle as she is a really cute mover and would definitely place in the shows around here.
     
    07-29-2011, 08:59 PM
  #7
Green Broke
She sounds like my gelding. He's actually a palomino arab too! Good luck, I'm selling mine as a hunter.
     
    07-29-2011, 09:31 PM
  #8
Weanling
Hmmm, must be something with those palomino arabs, eh? (there's my Canadian coming out lol)
     
    07-29-2011, 09:51 PM
  #9
Green Broke
Must be!
     
    07-29-2011, 11:55 PM
  #10
Super Moderator
I agree with eguiliove. You won't get her to slow down by pulling on boht reins and leaning back. She will just brace against the bit and go right through it and you end up kind of "waterskiing with the brakes on". This will totally dull her out to the meaning of the rein/bit and build a hard mouth and a braced back and a bad situation.

You definitely want to use circling and one rein stop/disengagement of the hind to keep her moveing , as she needs to, but not allowing her to brace up and barge forward. You give her a release from this circleing when she does slow down, and it doesn't have to be a huge slow down. When she changes, slows a bit, then release the presssure on the rein that is pulling her into the circling and let her go any direction she wants. As long as she is not picking up speed, give her some rein.
When she does pick up speed, you pick up the inside rein and ask her to start circling. You can vary the size of the circle and experient between having her actually spiral down to the point of disengagngin the hind or just having her circle fairly small. But look for any slowing change and reward it. If you need to , sit the trot.
     

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