Question about cruising at the trot: setting speeds
 
 

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Question about cruising at the trot: setting speeds

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  • Clinton anderson cruising exercise

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    03-10-2014, 08:21 PM
  #1
Yearling
Question about cruising at the trot: setting speeds

Hello there. I'm planning to start the cruising exercise with my mare at the trot, and I was wondering about setting the speed.

My mare likes to do the speed demon trot and it takes a lot of work to get her keeping a regular, slower rhythm, either with shortened reins or with posting at the speed I want (eventually she figures it out).

So if I can't use the reins, and doing a slower posting sometimes doesn't work, how do I accomplish the goal of the exercise which is to have her working at the speed I want her to be at and not the one she wants to be at?

Thanks in advance for any help!
     
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    03-10-2014, 09:33 PM
  #2
Yearling
The best thing to do is let her trot at whatever speed she wants to go and eventually she will slow down find her pace, post in the saddle and just ride it out. After 15 minutes she will find her pace and slow down. Use a stop watch if you have to, but don't quit to soon. If she breaks gait and canters do a one rein stop and ask for the trot again. Remember the point of the cruising exercise is to make her responsible for her feet at the gait you tell her to go, if you keep trying to slow her down it will confuse her. The slow speed will come after she understands to keep trotting, let her learn one thing at a time.

When you move up the lope you will probably encounter the same thing. Her lope will be really fast, but she will learn to slow down and pace herself, you have to let her figure it out on her own.
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    03-11-2014, 09:13 PM
  #3
Yearling
Thanks. I guess I misunderstood the exercise. I thought I was supposed to get her to go the speed I want, and not just the gait.
     
    03-11-2014, 09:34 PM
  #4
Super Moderator
That's right, she will soon find the natural trot . Gssw is right. The whole idea is for the horse to take responsibility for maintaining the gait and for them to find confidence in it, and for you to find confidence in letting them find confidence. That's one reason why you need to feel reasonably secure in your seat to do this at the trot or canter because your horse may make decisinons to stop, turn speed up or ? And you need to be able to go with the flow. I mean, not steer and not hang on the reins trying to slow. Just be ready to pick up the reins when she DOES break gait, bring her to trot, and then go on.

You know, I've never done this. I'd like to, but I dont' really have an enclosed arena. (that's my excuse, and I'm sticking with it!)
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    03-11-2014, 10:06 PM
  #5
CRK
Foal
I believe I missed something in this discussion, because I'm not exactly sure what the "cruising" exercise is, but I wanted to add a tip that works for me with horses that get quick.

I like to do a lot of small circles, so as the horse gets too fast, I put them on a small circle or figure 8. Doing a small circle forces the horse to slow down to stay balanced, but avoids me needing to use both reins, which tends to just make a quick horse brace. I also do a lot of transitions so the horse starts thinking about slowing down more often. (and the transitions also help develop the horse's balance)

I hope this is helpful, and would anyone mind explaining what the "cruising" exercise is? Thanks!
     
    03-11-2014, 10:26 PM
  #6
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by CRK    
I believe I missed something in this discussion, because I'm not exactly sure what the "cruising" exercise is, but I wanted to add a tip that works for me with horses that get quick.

I like to do a lot of small circles, so as the horse gets too fast, I put them on a small circle or figure 8. Doing a small circle forces the horse to slow down to stay balanced, but avoids me needing to use both reins, which tends to just make a quick horse brace. I also do a lot of transitions so the horse starts thinking about slowing down more often. (and the transitions also help develop the horse's balance)

I hope this is helpful, and would anyone mind explaining what the "cruising" exercise is? Thanks!

The goal of the cruising exercise is "to be able to trot and canter on a loose rein and have the horse maintain that gait and speed by himself-not any faster, and not any slower." Quote from Clinton Anderson fundamentals arena mate. The horse learns to be responsible for his own feet without the rider touching the reins. During the teaching phase of the lesson they usually start out going faster then we want them to, and the rider just needs to sit there and wait for them to slow on their own, which at some point they will drop there head and slow down, on their own. If we are constantly managing there feet they never learn to be responsible. The only time the rider would touch the reins would be if the horse breaks gait and canters at which time the rider does a one rein stop shuts the horse down and goes again at the trot. Some hotter horses may only trot for two or three strides then they break into a canter and that is fine, you one rein stop then go again, eventually they realize they will be shut down and learn to trot. It is not an exercise that you do for one day and they have it, usually it takes a good 7-10 days for them to get really confident with the exercise. Especially horses who are used to be micromanaged, they just don't know what to do and will just trot and trot in circles until they figure out they can anywhere they want, then they have fun with it.
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    03-11-2014, 11:11 PM
  #7
Started
I love this exercise. Sometimes horses just need to "find themselves". And it's pretty therapeutic for riders who are chronic micromanagers and "controlling" types. Just go with the flow and let your horse find its natural rhythm, and in turn, trust in your horse to get there without your help.
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    03-15-2014, 09:53 AM
  #8
Yearling
Great info, everyone. Thanks!
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    03-15-2014, 12:37 PM
  #9
Showing
If the horse breaks into a canter, go with it. When pooped it will slow back to the trot as the trot is much easier on the horse.
     
    03-15-2014, 12:38 PM
  #10
CRK
Foal
Thanks for the explanation!
     

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