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EventerGurl 11-09-2013 10:56 AM

Lead Changes
 
I have a 7 year old ottb who is now starting eventing. He has lovely movement, and can easily jump 3'. The problem is that he cannot do a lead change.

When he is on the wrong lead he easily gets unbalanced while doing tighter turns on jumper courses. Occasionally he will do a right to left lead change, but never left to right. He is off the track, so the right lead is harder to get than the left lead.

If I am on the left lead and go over a pole on the diagonal, he will do an easy change with the aid. When I subtract the pole, he does not understand the aid.

Do you have any suggestions on how to teach him the aid for lead changes?

~*~anebel~*~ 11-09-2013 11:03 AM

All a flying lead change is, is a transition to canter. The fact that you are already cantering just means you have to have better timing!
So, just think about it as a canter to canter transition. Put your aid on for your new canter - sometimes a touch with a dressage whip is useful - and if he tries and gets his change, walk and pat him. Repeat only about 3-4 times per side per session, always with a walk and praise in between and he should start to get it. If he doesn't change, bring him back to walk, pick up the new lead and praise him, then walk and praise him again. If he gets too wound up - do something else for a while, then go back. Good luck!
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