My first canter - Advice needed! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Smile My first canter - Advice needed!


This was last Tuesday, my very first canter woo! I've been riding 2 years, but the first year, perfected my trot (Took 4 months), then took a year long break, I have recently gotten back into riding (4 lessons) and... finally cantered!

Can anyone here criticize me/ give me advice please? I find the transition hardest to ride haha


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post #2 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 12:01 PM Thread Starter
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Also just to claify, I only ride once a week, so 4 times a month for 3 months, then twice more, so 14 lessons before I took a break, and now 4 lessons :)
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post #3 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 12:33 PM
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Practice, practice, practice.
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post #4 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 12:55 PM
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the quality of the video makes it very hard to see much detail. it appears you are gripping up a lot, though. your horse is "insulted" by it, and so has a swish to his tail and ears back. you are trying to stay on by gripping, and your legs come up , knees to far forwad, and heels up and gouging into his rib cage. and you are leaning forward.

are these things wrong? yes. Are they typical of first time canters?> YES!

so, you just canter more and relax as much as you can. it will get easier and easier and you'll be able to drop your legs down and ride by sitting down on the horse more. good luck!
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post #5 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 01:04 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
the quality of the video makes it very hard to see much detail. it appears you are gripping up a lot, though. your horse is "insulted" by it, and so has a swish to his tail and ears back. you are trying to stay on by gripping, and your legs come up , knees to far forwad, and heels up and gouging into his rib cage. and you are leaning forward.

are these things wrong? yes. Are they typical of first time canters?> YES!

so, you just canter more and relax as much as you can. it will get easier and easier and you'll be able to drop your legs down and ride by sitting down on the horse more. good luck!
Yeah sorry about the quality /: I noticed that I was too tense, however my instructor told me to hold on with my thighs, and if I relaxed too much I found that I would bounce too much. I don't know, will it come with practise?

Also, does anyone know of any exercises I can do to improve?

Thank you :)


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post #6 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 01:23 PM
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Exercises to improve? Canter more. I agree with with everyone else, it's just something that you need to practice.

If you feel uncomfortable with the horse for some reason, ask for another mount – I have seen people who were finding the canter challenging with one particular horse, however quickly got a much better feel for it simply by trying it on a different horse that had a different (or slower) canter. Much like trots can vary between horses, so can the canter.

Nice arena there, I'll say that much. ;)
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post #7 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
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Exercises to improve? Canter more. I agree with with everyone else, it's just something that you need to practice.

If you feel uncomfortable with the horse for some reason, ask for another mount I have seen people who were finding the canter challenging with one particular horse, however quickly got a much better feel for it simply by trying it on a different horse that had a different (or slower) canter. Much like trots can vary between horses, so can the canter.

Nice arena there, I'll say that much. ;)
The horse I was on she gave me just that week because he was a little slower than my usual mount, and OTTB whom I love. Rusty ( horse is the video) needs a little more leg to go, so I was at a full workout getting him to canter.

Okay so I should just do more cantering now? I'll post another video in about 2 weeks, hopefully more detailed.

Thanks, you should see the stables! There's a video on my YouTube channel if you want to see haha.

Thank you all for the input.


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post #8 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 01:45 PM
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the ability to not bounce comes from being able to absorb the movement in your hips and lower back. can you get ahold of one of the excersize balls? the really big ones? you blow it up tight, then try riding it. I mean, literally sit on it as close to a true in the saddle position, get balanced, then take your feet off the floor and try to balance on the roly-poly ball by tightening and loosening your stomach muscles to control the movelment and keep you on top.
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post #9 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
the ability to not bounce comes from being able to absorb the movement in your hips and lower back. can you get ahold of one of the excersize balls? the really big ones? you blow it up tight, then try riding it. I mean, literally sit on it as close to a true in the saddle position, get balanced, then take your feet off the floor and try to balance on the roly-poly ball by tightening and loosening your stomach muscles to control the movelment and keep you on top.
Yeah I've got one, hahaha I'll actually try that, Thanks! I just hope nobody walks in on me :p

Lower back, as in I should relax it and go with the movement, or should I try and maintain that small arch in my lower back, yet still sort of move with the canter?

Sorry guys, I'm just feeling clueless right now


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post #10 of 21 Old 11-08-2013, 02:05 PM
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relax the lower back. a tense lower back will make you bounce.
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