first time owner of an ottb
I just bought my first ottb. I've been riding horses for 12 years so
I am not a beginner. I rode him in just a halter and reins and he was amazing. I was just looking for some training tips in easing him into general riding then later going into showing (jumping, English/dresage) he is a big sweetheart & has lots of potential. So any advice on training & bits would be amazing!
I use a french eggbutt with my guy. It's the only bit he likes. I would just suggest taking things very slow and work from the ground up. Start with building a relationship based on trust. Do lunge work wit him too. I don't know the details of your new pony, ie, age, how long off the tack ,etc. but first time riding him in all his tack I would make sure there are people around, jsut to be safe...just in case of those thoroughbred moments!
I would work on a lot of simple exercises, making sure he's listening to you, responsive to all your aids and cues. They don't get much on the track except for "GO!"
Jockeys also do a thing called "bridging" where they rest their hands on the wither area and the horses learn to run through it. I noticed my TB liked to do that a lot by setting the bit in his mouth, mostly when cantering, and that way he felt he didn't have to respond to my cues. You horse may not do that, but it is justt an observation. When I ask for the canter I make sure I am holding my reins higher until he relaxes into himself.
There is a great book called Beyond The Track that I would totally recommend getting. It explains everything really nicely with lots of detail and pictures for reference.
The biggest surpises I had when I owned an OTTB were:
1) breaking lead ropes--couldn't stay tied
sounds like you don't have this problem
2) the gaits.
TB's cannot pick up speed quickly, corner easily or stop quickly bc of their build. You'll never get one to do a good slide stop for you.
Keep this in mind when you walk courses and count strides and turns.
My OTTB liked the copper and steel roller D-ring snaffle I bought for him. Lots of play in the mouthpiece.
Thank you guys so much! I have eggbutts, d & o ring snaffles & a whole lot more. His previous owner used a Tom thumb & i dont know how I feel about those. I like gentle bits. & I rode him with just a halter and lead rope and he stopped on a dime for me & did a great slow Trot. I think ottb (and ANY horse breed) need someone who is confident & not afraid & that knows who's in charge. I'm just 5,3 and I barley reach the top of his shoulder but he's never tried anything pushy....yet lol
But I'm going to Start on ground work first before anything. (lunging, walking with a lead rope ex) which I've had no problems with yet
Yes, get rid of the tom thumb! I like D rings, it's likely he used one on the track and can help with turning issues some fresh OTTBs have. Take your time, find his comfort zone. There's lots of OTTB training threads here.
OTTB's are KNOWN for their speed, and their ability to take off quickly, they will be gone before you realize they are out from under you. They have the agility of a cat. Most probably can't do a sliding stop, but that is because of their build, and I don't know what sliding stops have to do with counting strides and jump courses?
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