I'm having issues with teaching my Quarter horse to set up for showmanship. I've been working on this for quite some time and It doesn't seem to be getting any better. He is just slow at it and he usually catches on to thing really quickly. It usually takes him like 15-30 secs to set up which is well too long in the show arena.
Heres what I already do:
1. When we stop I set the right hind first. If its not already underneath him I walk him forward one step.
2. Then I set the left hind. This is what we have the most problem with. I pull down and slighty to the right. Move back and forth until he gets it.
3. Right front (his favorite foot to move!) I lift up and to the left until he gets it right. He usually moves it towards the left so he is not aligned up with the judge anymore.
4. For the left front, I lift up and to the right. He usually then picks up the right front! Errrr!
Once he has the back set he gets the fronts are pretty easy but he also moves the front feet will I'm trying to set the back. I'm also a bit of a perfectionist when I'm practicing. I don't know if thats a good or bad thing???
So any tips on what else I could do, improve, or do different would be a great help! I try to practice this as much as I can and sometimes he gets it and sometimes not so fast. I might be able to make a video if thats any help.
all i can suggest is setting up every time you do something. take him out of the stall -- set him up, lead to ride set him up, ect. also you're doing the set up correctly, doing the back first then the front. I'm pretty sure i do not pull up and over or push him over to set his feet. i use the chain squarely so if he was to move more than i wish he doesn't swing his hip or bend his neck. i also use the count to 10 rule in training showmanship, if after 10 seconds he doesnt' have it, back him up or turn him or walk off and try again. this way he's not in the habbit of "she'll wait for me". once he gets it down in 10 seconds shorten the time frame till you have a nice 3-4 second set up.
Thanks I'll have to try that.
Another Suggestion. Reinforce the Whoa
Set up with everything is correct. also after every foot is set say whoa. Say again when set up is finished.
Thanks yea I read somewhere to pull there head opposite direction to open up their shoulders but it obviously isn't working. He is good at not moving his pivot foot and once I set him up he stands perfectly still. He mostly has the most problem with his left hind. We go back and forth for a while then after that he does it correctly. I walk him up and down my driveway doing it and every time I put him back in the pasture. I'm going to take lessons at a new barn once the weather clears up and hopefully they will be able to help me out. Thanks everyone!
You might be moving your hand too much when asking him to move the hind leg so he is constantly over doing it. If he seem like he is 'dancing' with his hind foot he most likely is just not paying attention to what you are asking. You might want to get after him a little and back him up. But that is only if you know that he understands what you want and he is just not doing it. If you think he doesnt understand your cues I would get some help from a trainer with that.
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