Working on the bit - The Horse Forum
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 19 Old 01-06-2010, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Canberra
Posts: 33
• Horses: 2
Working on the bit

I have just recently broken my new horse in and he is going fabulously, however now that the time has come for me to ask him to work on the contact he just thinks i'm asking him to halt, despite still asking him for forward movement. I have taught horses to go on the bit before but they were mature and more comfortable with the bit in general. Any tips for a young horse with a very soft mouth...?
pepperum is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 19 Old 01-06-2010, 05:23 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 8,168
• Horses: 3
Get your basics totally downpat before you worry about where his head is. If he thinks that a bit of contact means stop, you havent got a good enough go button. Does he move off your leg immediately from slight pressure? Or does it take a bit to get him moving? Will he yield from your leg, will he maintain YOUR pace until you ask it to be changed? Are his paces forward, marching and active, off the forehand...? Or does he just run fast making you think that he's 'forward'. This is what people with ottb's say, "Oh, my horse is very forward", no running on is not forward, I bet if you asked for the horse to move off when they want to stay slow, they won't do it.

How are you asking him to come 'onto the bit'? Because if you're just pulling back and putting leg on that is just giving him conflicting aids and won't do you any good. He should be responsive, but not hyper sensitive, to the leg and willing to keep moving each time you touch him with the leg. Getting a horse to take a contact that doesn't understand the concept is not something you can teach over night. It takes patience, and good, solid basic work as desicribed above. He should also have a basic understanding of responding to your back/seat.Work him onto a circle, and legyield him in and out. Lots of rein changes, transitions, leg yield and shoulder fore if you know how to teach it. Always keeping the rein contact steady, don't pull, but don't give your reins away. Just leave the contact there for him to have a feel of, and by making him engage his hindquarters via transitions (trot-canter-trot are the BEST!), changes of rein and leg yield/shoulder fore, he will start to work and loosen his back, which in turn will encourage him to pick up a contact on the bit.
Kayty is offline  
post #3 of 19 Old 01-06-2010, 08:03 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Northern Utah
Posts: 5,455
• Horses: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by pepperum View Post
Any tips for a young horse with a very soft mouth...?
Proceed carefully and get some help from an experienced person. It helps to think about what you want to achieve before you start training each day. Your horse will need to break at the poll at a stand still and each gait before expecting her to collect and travel in frame.

There's nothing like the Rockies in the springtime... Nothing like the freedom in the air... And there ain't nothing better than draggin calves to the fire and there's nothing like the smell of burning hair. -Brenn Hill
kevinshorses is offline  
post #4 of 19 Old 01-06-2010, 08:09 PM
Foal
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 8
• Horses: 2
Try the robart pinchless bit. It does not pinch the horses mouth, its the only thing I use. And its good for horses with sensitive mouths. www.pinchlessbits.com
samstox is offline  
post #5 of 19 Old 01-07-2010, 03:18 PM
Foal
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 6
• Horses: 1
I break in a lot of ponies for people and I find that if you lunge and long rein in side reins to help the horse get used to holding his head there and build up more back and neck muscle which will help him to hold his head in an outline for longer periods of time without causing aches and pains. I also start to work the horses in a outline right from the word go. So there are used to woriking in an outline as much as they are used to trotting xx
xxalfiexx is offline  
post #6 of 19 Old 01-07-2010, 04:11 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: In the saddle.
Posts: 5,157
• Horses: 1
If you're pulling, you aren't asking correctly. Even backed up with leg, pulling gets you nowhere really quickly. It's an excellent way to teach a horse to stop, and not go again.

Horses will naturally come round when ridden correctly in rhythm, while they are relaxed and on the correct length of rein. You must ride "back to front" to achieve correct contact. Every time you pull back, you are riding "front to back". Every time with no exceptions, even if you also have your leg on.

We like horses with sensitive mouths!! We love them! So this should not be an issue. The horse should be very easy to teach.

Good luck! And I second Kevin on getting a proper coach.
~*~anebel~*~ is offline  
post #7 of 19 Old 01-07-2010, 05:57 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 6,179
• Horses: 4
Just a note - She isn't pulling, but so far he has worked on a loose rein nice and forward, so when she picks up the contact he takes it as the cue for a stop.

wild_spot is offline  
post #8 of 19 Old 01-08-2010, 01:22 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Washington, USA.
Posts: 6,634
• Horses: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayty View Post
Get your basics totally downpat before you worry about where his head is. If he thinks that a bit of contact means stop, you havent got a good enough go button. Does he move off your leg immediately from slight pressure? Or does it take a bit to get him moving? Will he yield from your leg, will he maintain YOUR pace until you ask it to be changed? Are his paces forward, marching and active, off the forehand...? Or does he just run fast making you think that he's 'forward'. This is what people with ottb's say, "Oh, my horse is very forward", no running on is not forward, I bet if you asked for the horse to move off when they want to stay slow, they won't do it.

How are you asking him to come 'onto the bit'? Because if you're just pulling back and putting leg on that is just giving him conflicting aids and won't do you any good. He should be responsive, but not hyper sensitive, to the leg and willing to keep moving each time you touch him with the leg. Getting a horse to take a contact that doesn't understand the concept is not something you can teach over night. It takes patience, and good, solid basic work as desicribed above. He should also have a basic understanding of responding to your back/seat.Work him onto a circle, and legyield him in and out. Lots of rein changes, transitions, leg yield and shoulder fore if you know how to teach it. Always keeping the rein contact steady, don't pull, but don't give your reins away. Just leave the contact there for him to have a feel of, and by making him engage his hindquarters via transitions (trot-canter-trot are the BEST!), changes of rein and leg yield/shoulder fore, he will start to work and loosen his back, which in turn will encourage him to pick up a contact on the bit.
What she said. =]

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
riccil0ve is offline  
post #9 of 19 Old 01-08-2010, 01:52 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 629
• Horses: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by wild_spot View Post
Just a note - She isn't pulling, but so far he has worked on a loose rein nice and forward, so when she picks up the contact he takes it as the cue for a stop.
The rider does not pick up contact, the horse seeks contact. It is always the horse who decides on this issue, based on level of preparedness, fitness, strength, suppleness, etc...

When the horse is truly seeking contact, only then may the rider experiment and ask the question 'can you give me more?' by slightly shortening the reins and that should result in a slightly shortened outline, but still with the willingness to be forward.

If it results in something else, then the horse wasn't actually seeking the contact, or the rider has taken the contact.
Mercedes is offline  
post #10 of 19 Old 01-08-2010, 02:05 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: secret mountain valley
Posts: 1,363
• Horses: 2
I definitely agree with Anebel and Kevin- your first step should be to get an experienced trainer to help, especially in these first stages. It takes no time at all to frustrate a horse and make them resistant, even if your intentions are completely good.
tealamutt is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
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:
OR

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.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Speakers not working? CrazyChester Technology 3 06-14-2009 12:45 PM
Working under him self Erin_And_Jasper English Riding 17 03-07-2009 10:44 AM
Working with Mac MyMonkeyHero Horse Training 10 09-21-2008 12:13 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome