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SpiritJordanRivers 07-29-2009 08:49 PM

Will NOT Slow Down!
I have a 6 year old Tennessee Walking Horse gelding named Spirit. I recently switched him from a Tom Thumb to an Eggbutt Snaffle. He's doing great and I like the bit, but he WON'T SLOW DOWN! I bursts into the canter and I pull back to slow him down and he'll slow down, then he speeds up faster! The rack is much better, but the canter is a freaking nightmare! Some days he's slower and then some days like today, I wanna squeeze his little head cause I'm so frustrated! We're working on disengaging (trainer told me to) and sometimes I'll disengage him until he slows down, but I want him to have a slow canter instead of an insane hand-gallop. . . help! :)

SpiritJordanRivers 07-29-2009 08:50 PM

line 3 first word was supposed to be He instead of I

Qtswede 07-29-2009 08:51 PM

make him do small circles, or pull him into a one rein stop every time he takes one step faster than you ask. He'll get the picture pretty quickly.

HorsesAreForever 07-29-2009 08:54 PM

Do you feel safe riding him???? If you do let him take off if you dont think hes gonna buck or what not.. when he wants to slow down ask him to keep going a few more laps he will realize every time hes does his little burst of hyperness he will need to do it longer then he wanted to.


If you dont feel confident doing that lunge him before you ride???

Don't pull back because the engages the hind quarters and makes its easier for them to go faster. Instead try a one reins stop. Take just one rein and pull his head towards you, hold it till he stops then ask him to go again.

Hope I helped

RiosDad 07-29-2009 08:59 PM

A famous trainer said if you want a horse to slow down pick the horizon as your destiny and just put the horse to a lope heading to this imaginary point. Given the distance the horse will slow down because of fatigue. It doesn't take long until the horse learns the he has to conserve himself and right off the bat the horse runs easy not knowing how long he has to run.
I don't feel you can do a good job loping around an arena. I pick roads for the distance and regularly did 10 mile laid back lopes.

SpiritJordanRivers 07-29-2009 09:14 PM

Didn't Pat Parelli say that? I feel completely safe riding him. He's never bucked. Ever. I do lunge him, but he's never been taught to lunge before and I'm currently teaching him. He can only walk, stop, and rack on the lungeline, he can't canter yet. It's like he never runs out of energy, he never wants to stop . . . he could canter forever . . . I'll try the one rein stop and see how that works out, thanks :)

wild_spot 07-29-2009 10:05 PM

Gah, I can't stand the one rein stop. I honestly beleive that fi I pulled my horses head around to me knee any faster than maybe a trot, he would either trip or flip over. I think it's more dangerous than the horse bolting in the first place.

I agree with the idea of just making him go and go and go. Sit relaxed, stay calm, and just lope and lope and lope. Ask for a slow down, if he doesn't respond, lope some more. Once he responds to your cue, then he can quit.

Spirithorse 07-29-2009 10:31 PM

I have used a one rein stop on a horse who started to bolt while in the canter, along with a lot of other instances, and unless the horse is in a gallop, if you do it correctly and are calm and don't yank the horse's head around, he shouldn't trip.

I will use a one rein stop as a last resort or if I feel fearful. Bending the horse's head causes the horse to disengage his HQ's which takes all his power away. A horse can't run away from you with his nose at your toe ;) DO NOT pull straight back, that will only give him something to brace against (plus it makes horse's dull). If you do use a one rein stop, do it smoothly, don't yank him.

What I usually do if horses get impulsive is put them on a circle and ask them to bend their ribs to release the tension. Circles help impulsive horses calm down, straight lines help lazy horses become more motivated. Consistency vs. variety. The more impulsive the horse is, the smaller the circle. I really look for a horse to start sneezing, that's their way of telling me they are breathing better and releasing the tension in their rib cage.

SabreBaby 07-29-2009 10:33 PM

Do you have a curb chain on him?

riccil0ve 07-30-2009 12:08 AM


My mare tends to leap into the trot. We'll be going along at a great walk, I ask for a trot, and then she bounds into it and trots off like the devil is on her heels. I know almost instantly if she is going to trot the way I want her to or not, so I transition back to the walk. It usually only takes the one time for her to understand, and she'll transition smoothly and at a good pace. So try working on your transitions. Walk, halt; walk, trot; trot, walk. When he's doing well, then work on the canter.

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