Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Greenville area / SC
To begin with, I'll start a horse that wants to jig, alone. I don't want to interfere with any one else's ride. I'll lunge him before saddling just to take the edge off (after I'm comfortable with his progress, I stop lunging). Once he is saddled, I'll flex him in both directions then mount. Once I've mounted, I'll flex him several time in both directions from the saddle. I'll have him stand for several seconds but as he gets better at standing, I'll increase that time. If he starts to get anxious, we do circles and serpentines then stand. I keep that process up until he stands for a few moments, only then do we walk off.
We will walk off several times and then return to our starting place. If he starts to jig or get anxious at any time it's back to circles then stand still. There is no set time as to how many times I need to do this and it's isn't surprising to have him all lathered up the first few times. Never will I pull on this face or jab him with my heels. Everything is done slowly and without anger. It is simply a pressure and release.
Once I have him standing and walking off without jigging, I'll introduce another rider. The rider I'll have with me knows that this is going to be a training ride and we may not get 1/2 mile from the trailers. We do the same thing as before but the 2nd rider will stop when I stop.
As his attitude improves the second rider (this may be several training trips latter) will ride a little further away and my horse is expected to follow but not get anxious to catch up. If the jigging starts, the second rider will stop and wait while we do some flexing and circles then we both move off, allowing me to slowly catch up. Again, this may take several trips to get it so that he does not get anxious when another horse gets ahead of him.
The long and the short of it is that this process may take a few trips or 1/2 the summer. What I want is a horse that is disciplined and at ease with being anywhere in the group I ride with.
There is no magic to this method and I'm sure everyone has heard it before but the reason that so many horses are a problem is because most riders want only to enjoy a trail ride and allow their horses to get away with things that shouldn't be allowed. I would rather spend a month or two fixing the problem so that the horse will be a pleasure to ride anytime I saddle him up.
Time and patience.
I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.
Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.
It's not always what you say but what they hear.
Last edited by iridehorses; 02-20-2010 at 10:10 PM.