I have a problem with lesson horses (help!)
Before I go on to my next lesson later this week I think I need some advice. I have a hard time with lesson horses. They always take advantage of me! And I know it's all my fault! I have this mentality that "this animal does not belong to me so I should be nice to it." In the past I've had no problem with horses I've leased, its always those lesson horses. I don't wanna offend their owner if I have to give them a good smack or kick. I know it sounds silly. Has anyone else experienced this?
Yes. I think most people have had to deal with those cheeky little guys at some point- almost every horse I learned to ride on was a lesson horse, so I feel your pain! Most leased horses get ridden by fairly decent or good riders, and only have a few people that ride them, rather than a butt ton of people that are still learning. They'll always test you to see what level you are at, and what they can get away with.
I'd say you should ask their owners what they think you should do, and what they are okay with. If they're okay with the occasional whack or kick when needed, then do that, but only sparingly, once or twice to get your point. If they keep testing you, or if the owner says you should be super gentle, then you'll have to resort to just being as nagging as possible. If they don't listen, ask again. And again. And again. And when they comply, lots and lots of praise.
I'd be more offended if you DIDN'T discipline my horse, especially if you were capable. Ask the owner what they would do if x, y or z happened. The more they get away with the behavior the more difficult it will be to correct.
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You're not doing the owner any favors by letting the horse get away with bad behavior. You're actually teaching it that the bad behavior is acceptable.
If you're not sure how to correct the horse, ask your trainer. She (or he) may be familiar with the horse and would know what works.
Lesson horses are so valuable, we're better riders because of them, they teach us and test us. I love the old schoolmasters.
Yep, that's a lesson horse for ya. A good instructor will use the opportunity to tell you how to correct the behavior and get the lesson back on track. Lesson horses respond well to riders, but love to take advantage of passengers. Ride with intent. The horse will understand that.
I used to be the same when I was younger and first starting to ride. Instructors had to get after me all the time about kicking or using a whip. Once I got older my soft spot for cute fuzzy little ponies shrank and I realized they needed to be disciplined LOL
Yes I have experienced that.
Ask the owner/instructor how to correct it
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