How do I create slowness in a gait
 
 

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How do I create slowness in a gait

This is a discussion on How do I create slowness in a gait within the Natural Horsemanship forums, part of the Training Horses category

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        07-26-2013, 02:36 PM
      #1
    Foal
    How do I create slowness in a gait

    My horse is a speed demon. Any faster than a walk she only goes faster and faster. The ride usually end up with me flopping around in the saddle because she decides when she wants to go fast and slow. I do turn her in circles but she can turn on a dime and that makes it hard for me to do it consistently. She is very high spirited and loves to run. I don't run her unless it is in an area where she can be stopped. That is her other problem, she doesn't like to stop.
         
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        07-26-2013, 03:41 PM
      #2
    Yearling
    Have you tried backing her up whenever she goes fast? My mare's sometimes fast at the canter and my instructor said to back her up whenever she gets too fast to teach her to go slow. Her explanation was better than mine though! I find that in some horses circles tend to hype them up sometimes. My trainer also said to back up periodically whenever you're riding to keep the horse on its toes so it goes slower so it can stop and back up. Hope this helps some! :)
         
        07-26-2013, 04:30 PM
      #3
    Showing
    Ride about 6' off the rail and as soon as she picks up speed do a turnback into the rail. She'll likely stop but just keep turning her until you are going in the opposite direction and about 6' off the rail. She will learn to not stop. Just keep working the rail until she will hold the speed without you using the reins except to turn her. After about 20 min she should be figuring out that she can either maintain speed or work harder. When she will give you a nice canter for half the arena. Stop, dismount and untack her and let her roll then put her away. That is a huge reward for her.
         
        07-26-2013, 04:33 PM
      #4
    Foal
    Yes I do back her up but I want her to go slower us so she will listen to me. She tends to get hot headed and not listen when going fast.
    barrelbeginner likes this.
         
        07-26-2013, 04:41 PM
      #5
    Foal
    OK that sounds good. But I don't have an area where in can work with a fence.
         
        07-26-2013, 04:43 PM
      #6
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Saddlebag    
    Ride about 6' off the rail and as soon as she picks up speed do a turnback into the rail. She'll likely stop but just keep turning her until you are going in the opposite direction and about 6' off the rail. She will learn to not stop. Just keep working the rail until she will hold the speed without you using the reins except to turn her. After about 20 min she should be figuring out that she can either maintain speed or work harder. When she will give you a nice canter for half the arena. Stop, dismount and untack her and let her roll then put her away. That is a huge reward for her.
    That sounds like a good idea but I live in a place where its open fields and no fences
         
        07-26-2013, 05:37 PM
      #7
    Foal
    One thing we do is put them in a smaller circle, making them get up under themselves and hold their shoulders correctly (make them work) until they slow down. Then we ride out of the circle. If speed increases, we repeat, repeat, repeat ....
         
        07-27-2013, 08:42 PM
      #8
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kewpalace    
    One thing we do is put them in a smaller circle, making them get up under themselves and hold their shoulders correctly (make them work) until they slow down. Then we ride out of the circle. If speed increases, we repeat, repeat, repeat ....
    How to you place their shoulders correctly? And by getting up under themselves you lower their head and and flex the poll right?
         
        07-30-2013, 12:45 PM
      #9
    Yearling
    One thing to remember is horses are prey animals- in the wild they are literally moving around for about 3/4 of a 24 hour day, and if your horse likes to go, go, go then making her turn circles and work more probably isn't going to 'tire her out' enough to start listening to you. Working your horse into the ground by doing a million little circles doesn't mean at the end of the ride she is listening to you, they are just tired and need a breather so that they can go go again. Humans technically have the tack and equipment to slow a horse down by submission, but that still doesn't mean that the slower horse is actually listening to its rider.
    My horse is very high energy and was the exact same way for years when I first bought him, so I totally understand how frustrating it is. Now I can increase and decrease the speeds of his gaits all with just a rope around his neck, it is totally possible.
    I think to begin with you need to establish better ground manners with her. Build a stronger relationship on the ground and riding at the walk so that she is completely confident that you will lead her safely. If she feels unsure or nervous, that is her saying "I need to defend myself from some unseen danger" and she thinks that she has to take the reins, which means she can do what she wants which is just go fast, usually a fleeing instinct. As you work with her she will begin to realize that with you in charge there is no reason to be so nervous. Once you feel like she is really listening to your cues on the ground and at the walk (especially the woah cue- try to get her to the point where you only use your seat to get her to stop from the walk) then very gently ask for a trot, but be ready to bring her to a complete stop when she starts rushing it- she wants to go faster but you guys are doing what you want to do. Let her stand quietly, then do a little movement to get her focused on you again; a pivot or something, then walk off and try again. Your first few rides may consist of mainly walking stopping and only a tad bit of trotting, but she will definitely get the idea.

    Good luck to you both I know you can do it! :)
         
        08-11-2013, 01:40 PM
      #10
    Foal
    The key is to get the horse "listening" for sure. You want their MIND "with you" Harry Whitney calls it "with-you-ness"

    The horse should learn to be "at the ready" and be "prepared" for what you may ask. The turnbacks on the rail help this because the horse will be always "ready and prepared" with it's body because its mind will be wanting to "listen" for what you want.

    If the mind is escaping, leaking - it will show up in the body. Anxiety, worry and trouble - as well as lack of focus, clarity, attention and confidence ....ALL LEAD TO THE BODY not being "with you". That can mean: bracing, resistance, tightness, rushing, stickiness/too slow, dropping shoulders, ribs, trailing hind-end. Any and all manner of body issues can usually be rooted in the "mind" of the horse.

    Reduce her worries, anxiety, get her mind/attention/focus on YOU. The key is a quiet, relaxed MIND. That will "show up" in the body :)

    Easier said than done! When she feels consistent, clarity from you and gains confidence and understands the relationship and communication, she will start to "turn loose". And that is when you'll be "together". Only then, can your horse "rate" properly, without resorting to physically pulling, picking up, "moving the meat" so to speak :)

    Good luck!!!!!
         

    Tags
    slowing down, softening, stopping a horse

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