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aruraeclipse 03-23-2009 02:12 PM

Eclipse moves when mounting.
My 6 yo mare Eclipse moves when I go to mount her, I always mount bare-back because I don't have a saddle to use at the moment (usually ride western) I lead her up to a log and she knows enough as soon as she gets to the log that she starts move her back end away from it before she is even stopped, because she knows that I want to mount. I want her to stand there at liberty, not having pressure on to the reins trying to get her to stop or anything, I want her to just stand there.

I have tried as soon as she starts moving away to back her up and move her off to the side and bring her back to stand her still. I thought about just getting her use to bringing her up to the side of the log, and just getting her use to being by it (even though she isn't afraid of it) and me on the log but not mounting. I have checked to see if she has a sore back or anything because I know that horses sometimes move when they are in pain, but she isn't. How should I keep going about this till she stops moving, and allows me to mount?

Groundwork, groundwork, groundwork?

Helpful hints are greatly appreciated, Thank you so much.

PS: in the picture below she is the black mare:D

Spirithorse 03-23-2009 03:10 PM

Your horses are beautiful! Great pictures.

Do you use a bareback pad when you ride? If not I would use one. From the pictures of her, she doesn't look too wide and "like a couch" so to speak. The pad might make things be a little more comfortable for her.

When you ride how is your balance? Do you do w/t/c? How long do you ride?

I teach my horses to come "pick me up" from things. I start on the ground first, make sure they understand how to move away from rhythmic (implied) pressure. I do this backwards, moving the front end and especially the hind end. Once I can twirl my rope or use my stick to "touch the air" around him and he moves I know I'm ready to start teaching him to pick me up. First, I don't lead my horse to the log, fence, etc. I get up and ask him to come over. It's best to have a solid structure behind you so the horse can't continue going around you in circles. I reward each step with a rub or treat, depending on the horse. If the horse moves a certain part of his body away from me I'll reach over with my whip/stick/rope and "tap the air" next to him. If he doesn't move I'll tap him with the ___ until he moves toward me. If you use a whip PLEASE be mindful of how much effort you use to tap her. Too much and it will sting which will not make things any better. Sometimes the horse will move INTO the pressure so just keep tapping her until she tries in the right direction. Reward the slightest try.

With my horses as soon as I step up on something they get right into position on their own. I never have to touch the reins. It's really neat!

aruraeclipse 03-23-2009 06:54 PM

Thank you very much Spirithorse on the beautiful comment. I don't have a bareback pad, nor have I ever used one, just plane ol' bareback. She is just nicely rounded, and I know that I can't be too heavy for her I weigh 125 pounds. She is a shorter horse too, she might even be classified as a pony, I'd have to measure her, I think she is either 14.1hh or 14.2hh.

My balance is good, I have been on a horse by myself since I was 4.5years old, loved horses all my life. I just mainly walk with her, I didn't have the chance to do anything with her last year and just got her about a year and a half ago at the most, so I'm starting my real training on them now. I don't ride very long right now its been busy, buying a property, and such, but I usually ride for about 15-20 minutes at the most.
Your so right I forgot about asking horses, not leading, its about giving them the choice. I'm always very big on praise, and I always reward.
So say If I'm using a stick, should I just tap her back till she does move towards me? and as soon as she shifts her weight or makes a step, reward right? I always start off tapping lightly very lightly because I know that she is a sensitive horse. I don't want to make her scared at all.
Just after winter it's been static, and I shocked her on the nose a few times not meaning to and she is still a little freaked out, I put my leather gloves on and I have been approaching and retracting with rubbing her face.

I can't wait to get far enough with my horses that they do the same as yours. Thank you so much for your help, greatly appreciated!

Spirithorse 03-23-2009 08:38 PM

When you are teaching her to move away from rhythmic pressure (if she doesn't know how already) get her to understand move the forehand, move sideways, and move the hindquarters. "Drive" her in 3 different areas....the areas I use when doing the mounting exercise is the shoulder (for the front end), the horse's side (for sideways), and the opposite hip (for the hindquarters). So if the whole horse needs to come closer to me, I'll tap the opposite side of her side. If it's just her butt, I'll tap the opposite hip. And yes, when she even shifts her weight, reward. Good luck! :)

loosie 03-25-2009 02:27 AM

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I agree with Spirit's advice, but also think you're spot on in your idea to get her used to standing 'in position' & still before actually wanting to get on. Obviously there's something unpleasant to her about your mounting(very normal, at least until you prove it will be OK). If you get her into position & then immediately want to do that unpleasant thing, no wonder she moves - it isn't working for her to stand still. So I break the exercise down into a number of steps. Next step to getting them to stand in position is usually being on something high enough that I can just drape one leg over while still standing, or lean over the horse.... then back off (approach & retreat) until they're comfortable & confident about that before doing a little more.

aruraeclipse 03-25-2009 11:45 AM

Thank you very much everyone, I feel I know what to do and look for now, I really appreciate the help. I'm going to make a training schedule for both of my horses this month and start playing with them! Yet again thank you spirit, and loosie! Both of your advice was greatly appreciated!

Aliboo 04-03-2009 11:41 AM

Correct the problem before it starts is your best strategy. If I have a horse Im getting on that is a known mover I tighten their reins in my hand and hold them still til Im on and ready. Once Your on, decide when they walk. Keep her halted for 3 seconds, atleast, or until you let her know she can walk and consistently do this all the times you get on her

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