Young Green Horse Running Into Canter
   

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Young Green Horse Running Into Canter

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  • Green horse canter training
  • How to teach young horse canter leads

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    01-24-2012, 01:01 AM
  #1
Foal
Young Green Horse Running Into Canter

So I've recently fired my coach, long story but needless to say the rose colored glasses have come off - and should have long ago.

I'm not a teenager, and this isn't my first horse - but due to the bad last relationship with my coach, I'm just doubting everything I know now.

I have a young horse, turning 4 this spring, we broke him last summer as he was ready for some ground training and saddle sweat work. But then he had most of the winter off, just some trail riding. So for the last I would say 4 months, due to weather and daylight issues, he was only being ridden 2 times a week, and on the trail, as soon as we broke into canter, he'd buck my butt clear outa the saddle.

Now we are somewhere and starting him over again. Last summer he was at the point you could go from walk to canter, and 75% of the time getting the right lead.

So now that we are both sadly outa shape, and just starting back up, I'm finding he's running into his canter and landing on the wrong lead. If I go up the long side of the arena this is what happens. If I turn him in a circle at half the ring, then he still slightly runs into his canter by a step or two but gets the right lead about 90% of the time.

Now I know right now he is sadly outa shape, so we only tend to do a couple of laps in either direction at a canter, and then we go back to trot work. Now I'm thinking because he's so outa shape and so young, to hold him back and demand then he hit the canter immediately when asked is too much for him right now. That we need to allow for the running and maybe continue to ask for it with the smaller circle, so we are often on the right lead. Atleast until he's in better physical shape to hold the canter and be able to adjust.

At this point if I ask him to shorten his super long stride at the canter he can only hold it for a couple of steps and then breaks into a trot.

I'm thinking starting with the circle for now, is setting him up for success, and in a month or so, when he's in better condition we can then start asking for more challenging requests....

Input? And yes I am searching for a new coach - after being twice burnt both badly, leaves you a bit gun shy.

Thank you in advance for your help
     
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    01-24-2012, 01:10 AM
  #2
Weanling
Subbing. My kid has the same problem. He can do just about anything w/t and THOSE gaits are gorgeous, but he has trouble loping under saddle and usually bucks into it to try and balance himself. In the last few weeks I've been loping him on a lunge line to help build those muscles, but it has only helped so much. Kinda stumped. :/
     
    01-24-2012, 01:16 AM
  #3
Trained
Unfortunately this is a result of a green horse and misaligned rider. You need to capture his energy in his hind end then release it, making sure you are freeing up his leading hip and shoulder. You might need a refresher course from a coach to get you two back on the right track. Sometimes we get really good at doing the wrong thing.
     
    01-24-2012, 02:49 AM
  #4
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by waresbear    
Unfortunately this is a result of a green horse and misaligned rider. You need to capture his energy in his hind end then release it, making sure you are freeing up his leading hip and shoulder. You might need a refresher course from a coach to get you two back on the right track. Sometimes we get really good at doing the wrong thing.
Hmm I've been doing this, and during lessons with my trainer. I push him over to the outside to load his outside hind leg so he'll push off with that one and be on the correct lead. I hope that makes some sense. It's gotten better since we've started lessons, but I may have to have her get on him once I can save up a bit. It doesn't particularly help that his saddle doesn't fit me as well as it fits him and that it's not built to train but to trail ride. Saving up for a new saddle too but that could be awhile!
     
    01-25-2012, 02:25 AM
  #5
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Luvs JRT    
I have a young horse, turning 4 this spring, we broke him last summer as he was ready for some ground training and saddle sweat work. But then he had most of the winter off, just some trail riding. So for the last I would say 4 months, due to weather and daylight issues, he was only being ridden 2 times a week, and on the trail, as soon as we broke into canter, he'd buck my butt clear outa the saddle.
Great! Not the last bit of course! But I think it's great that you've only just lightly started him. As the growth plates in their spine aren't 'closed' until around 5-6 years old, I don't like to hear about people doing too riding on immature 'kids'.

The bucking; have you checked your saddle recently? Saddles should be checked for fit around 6 monthly, but on young growing bodies I think it should be done at least twice as often. Have you ruled out any other source of pain, such as bit, teeth, feet, rider weight & balance, that may be causing this? If you've ruled out pain, do you think it's fear or something else?

Quote:
So now that we are both sadly outa shape, and just starting back up, I'm finding he's running into his canter and landing on the wrong lead.
I'd personally forget about leads for now & just get him happily & reliably making canter transitions. Once he's learned to do it at all, then you can start 'refining' it with leads, etc. There are also the possibilities of your balance, the saddle, hoof form & other body issues that could be making lead changes difficult for him.

Quote:
Now I'm thinking because he's so outa shape and so young, to hold him back and demand then he hit the canter immediately when asked is too much for him right now.
Agreed. Start at the start - or wherever he's reliably & happily up to - & move forward onto 'harder' things only after he's mastered the easy stuff.

Quote:
At this point if I ask him to shorten his super long stride at the canter he can only hold it for a couple of steps and then breaks into a trot.
I'd say great - reinforce that!
     
    01-25-2012, 07:04 AM
  #6
Yearling
An amazimg technique my trainer uses is what we call a flower pattern you do need a larger area for it.

Ride a tear drop shape to the right, turn on the forehand to the left tear drop to the left, turn on forehand right teardrop right. As you're coming out of the turn on the forhand push lot of energy at them the turn gets them working from their hind end and stops them jarring hard. A lot harder for them to buck if they're loose,

It's how we teach the babies to canter though they've often been trotting happily for a while, in the case of one of our schoolies trotted around by 6 yo but no idea how to canter.

I wouldn't worry too much about shortening the stride often they race slightly to help balance at first but of course I don't know your situation.
     
    01-25-2012, 03:02 PM
  #7
mls
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Luvs JRT    
At this point if I ask him to shorten his super long stride at the canter he can only hold it for a couple of steps and then breaks into a trot.
Is this what was happening prior to bucking episodes?

Bucking at a canter are typically - rider is in the horses face (pushing with legs but holding with hands), rider hitting saddle hard - happens with unbalanced horses, of course the saddle fit issues.

Have you tried posting him into the canter?

At this time I would ask for only a few strides, bring him down and then ask again. Give him (and you) some time to build the physical strength and balance.
     
    01-26-2012, 01:28 AM
  #8
Trained
Two things.

Cruise Control & One Rein Stops

I've been rewatching old dvds. Also, you will see this used by Clinton Anderson and I use it too.

First off, does he know how to do a one-rein stop? If not, teach him how until he's good at it. Do it at the walk/trot

When you get up to the canter, if he tries to run into it let him take a stride or two then bring him up into a one rein stop. Then ask again. Do this as much as you have to until he starts loping off slow. (Do a one rein stop on both sides, not just one) How this works is that he thinks everytime he starts cantering he's going to have to come right back down to a halt again.

Once he's good with doing one or two strides, let him go four or five. Then six or seven. Eight or nine. Build it up slowly. Don't care about leads right now, he's just a baby.

Eventually he will stop running into the canter. When the happens, set your cruise control and stop riding. I mean, put your hand down on a loose rein and let him go wherever he wants on whatever lead he wants as long as he keeps cantering. If at any time he starts running or rushing, bring him into a one rein stop and then try again.

I don't know if you watch Clinton Anderson, but he was doing this excersize with an OTTB. I have done it on my Anglo Arabian who used to literally lunge into his canter. In just a couple rides he was loping calmly.

After he's going relaxed, then worry about steering and ask him to go across diagnals and bringing him into wide circles. After you get steering and still being calm, then worry about leads. If at any time he rushes, one rein stop him.
     
    01-26-2012, 01:38 AM
  #9
Foal
He doesnt sound like he is balanced. If you are doubting your abilities (I feel you, mine are still hurting from a coach I had and I worry they arent good enough), I would look for a coach you can try. Work on circles, engaging his hindquarters and having him collect. Start at a walk. All sizes of circles. Do things that work on hindquarter and shoulder control, etc. Help him learn how to use his body and get underneath himself. Work on having the correct bend, etc. (I wish it was easy to explain over the web, but its so not..). It may take some trot work before you truly get those transitions. Also remember that when you ask for these transitions, until he has learned (work circles, balance and bend for a good week, don't canter yet and try to get the hang of that), ask going into a corner. Make sure you have your inside leg at the girth, outside leg back, your hips are moving freely and you are sitting up tall. Keep a slight lift on your inside hand to keep his shoulder up, do it in the circles as well. I have a SB who has similar issues, with the big stride and being unbalanced. It takes a while, but the results are great.
     
    01-26-2012, 10:18 AM
  #10
Weanling
Sometimes when they first start out you need to run them into it so they know what it is you want...but if he knows the cue then you no longer need to do that. I make my mare learn to canter from a walk 9as TWH that is the way it is for show) but also it keeps them from being too hot and helps them canter more slowly.

I would suggest to you to do a lot of cantering in circles. They will have trouble cantering on the wrong lead in a circle so you will know if you need to correct, and also it will slow your horse down so the canter isn't so fast.

Even work on a long line from the ground and you can correct him quickly so he understands you want the right lead and slower.

Hope this helps some.
     

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