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horsequeen373 11-19-2010 11:21 PM

So, when I learned how to canter, I was taught to use my outside leg, and put pressure on the inside rein. When I got older and started to ride stubborn, more challenging horses, I encountered many who didn't want to pick up a certain lead. My same instructor told me to bend them to the inside and make sure they are looking to the inside to get that lead. I recently changed instructors and was on a horse who didn't want to pick up the right lead. So I did what I had previously been taught. My new instructor told me to have the horse look to the outside to pick up the lead.
So my question is: Which is correct for asking for the lead, having the horse look to the inside or outside and why is that correct?

Also, there is this one horse at my old barn who hasn't been keeping her left lead through a grid. My friends and old instructor have been working with her to make her keep it but she has yet to go thru the grid without swapping to her right lead. Ideas on how to make her keep her left lead?

ArabianAllie 11-19-2010 11:38 PM

I always did inside rein outside leg, but my trainer said something about this cowboy that used to pull their head to the outside for canter. IDK. I still do inside rein.

RedTree 11-19-2010 11:47 PM

I do inside rein, outside leg back and inside leg on girth, I think it encourages them to start from the inside leg. So you making them balance and canter on the right lead...
maybe haha not to sure

Allison Finch 11-19-2010 11:49 PM

You should NEVER flex a horse to the outside as a means to pick up the correct lead. This is a shortcut that pushes weight onto the inside shoulder and increases the horses stiffness. It can work and many use it on green horses who are too stiff to use the proper bend. I say, increase your horses flexibility before you start cantering so that they are able to balance when bending correctly.

Why train incorrectly when you will only have to retrain the horse later. Take the time to train properly and, make it easy by giving the horse the proper tools to do it right from the beginning.

tinyliny 11-19-2010 11:55 PM

why would you want the horse to start from its' inside leg? Or did you mean the rider's inside leg? The first stride of the canter should be from the outside , rear leg.
Horses can either "fall" into a canter (begin the canter sequence with the 3rd step, i.e. the leading foreleg) OR they can "jump" into the canter, which is the correct way and involves having them step off with the outside, rear leg first.

I have heard some western riders teach the horse to take a RIGHT lead by putting a slight bend to the INSIDE , and cueing the canter strike off with your outside leg on, a bit back and "openning" your inside leg off the horse a bit to invite him to canter into that openning.

RedTree 11-20-2010 12:00 AM

I ment lead, like get the right lead which is the inside leg :)

Katie4469 11-20-2010 12:09 AM

I'm taught by pulsing with the inside rein, but not bending... and just keeping contact with the outside. Then, inside leg on the girth, outside behind the girth with pressure.

horsequeen373 11-20-2010 07:07 AM

Thanks guy :)

maura 11-20-2010 08:25 AM

For a lot of pleasure horses or horses with an elemaentary education, it's simply a matter of what set of cues they're accustomed to; and once they've learned a particular set of cues, it just doesn't matter.

You can teach a horse to pick up a left lead by rubbing your belly and patting your head if you want.

However, if you're going to train lateral work later or train by classical principles, Allison is absolutely correct. Asking for the lead by bending correctly in the direction the horse is traveling, and teaching that cue, lays the correct foundation for later work.

Tymer 11-21-2010 09:53 PM

Inside rein and outside leg is the proper cue for a canter. Outside rein and outside leg (not flexing, but so that they are facing the fence) is a cheap trick to make them pick up the lead. If they don't pick up the lead, they hit the fence. My barn advocates it on stubborn horses, but once they start getting the lead to use a proper cue.

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