Loping - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 12-21-2012, 09:57 PM Thread Starter
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Loping

Hi everyone! I have a issue I hope you can help me with...
Okay so my mare Squaw is just getting trained and she's not expirenced and nor am I, but I can ride her and so can my trainer. I can walk and jog and that's it. I'm really scared to try loping! I tried it once when I was feeling confident and Squaw tried to throw me off. I'm just scared to try it again. How do you sit to a lope? How do you move? What are you supposed to look like when you lope? Etc...
I need some advice, and you can ask for details.
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post #2 of 21 Old 12-22-2012, 08:24 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
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Help with loping!

Hi everyone! I have a issue I hope you can help me with...
Okay so my mare Squaw is just getting trained and she's not expirenced and nor am I, but I can ride her and so can my trainer. I can walk and jog and that's it. I'm really scared to try loping! I tried it once when I was feeling confident and Squaw tried to throw me off. I'm just scared to try it again. How do you sit to a lope? How do you move? What are you supposed to look like when you lope? Etc...
I need some advice, and you can ask for details.
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post #3 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 09:46 AM
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Well my very first advice would be to sell Squaw and get an older, broke horse that has been-there-done-that. Probably not what you want to hear, but time and time again, green riders + green horses usually ends in disaster for one or both.

If you've never loped on a horse before, and Squaw has training issues where she bucks and misbehaves, you two clearly are not a good match. Someone's going to get hurt.

Is Squaw the only horse you have ever ridden? Have you ever taken riding lessons? How old are you? How old is Squaw? How long has she been in training?

Does your trainer know how inexperienced you are?

I can't tell you how to lope over the internet or what to do if your horse misbehaves. I would highly suggest at least riding lessons with Squaw, if you wouldn't be willing to purchase a trained broke horse who can build your confidence and skills with riding.

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It is not enough to know how to ride; one must know how to fall.
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post #4 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 10:19 AM
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Can your trainer ride your horse at a canter without any bucking? If so, your riding is the issue. If not, the horse's training is the issue.

Learning a lope when both of you are learning is tough. I know, because that was how I did it - but my horses aren't buckers.

Can you stand in the stirrups and support your weight with your thighs while trotting? That isn't a traditional western practice, but it can help at times. Some horses quickly learn to expect you to bounce when they canter, and will get irritated at the thought of moving up a gait.

If you can find a horse that has experience to learn on, try standing at a trot. If that is OK, try going into a canter. Once you feel the horse's rhythm cantering under you, it is a lot easier to sink into the saddle while moving with the horse.


"People can teach us the rules, but only horses can teach us the art of riding."
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post #5 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 10:22 AM
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If the horse is trying to throw you, knowing how to ride a lope is not going to help and its the least of your concerns. Why is she trying to throw you? You have to check all the standard things for pain/discomfort. If there's no pain or discomfort then it's a training issue and should be addressed by a trainer.
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post #6 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 11:28 AM
mls
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My guess if she tried to throw you - there was a miscommunication and she was asking you a question.

Many green horses need MORE rein to canter/lope as they need to find their balance with a rider. An experienced rider or trainer can give and take as necessary. A green or nervous rider tends to be tense and hold onto the face. A green horse will not feel balanced and may feel as though they are bucking when in fact they are loping more up and down (I call it hobby horse loping - my "A" horse will do it when he is really fresh). A 'normal' lope is more forward moving.

Have your trainer lope her and then watch as you lope her to give you pointers.

Good luck!
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post #7 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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Beau- no, I've ridden other horses, a quarter named Misty when I took other lessons (but never was comfortable loping). I'm 13. She's only been training with me for months (since summer), but she's been previously trained as a trail horse by her previous owners.
Bsms- my trainer can ride my horse at a lope without problems, but that's why I was asking for help, I do think my riding is the problem... I don't like to admit it, but I do think I'm the problem. And thanks for the video!
DancingArabian- i think she trys to throw me because she knows I'm inexperienced and uncomfortable still. She's a smart girl.
Mls- I may be holding her face, I haven't tried in awhile and I'm not completely sure. Thank you!!!
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post #8 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 08:59 PM
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You should look forward, relax in the saddle, and tell her to go, with a loose rein. At first, let the horse pick how fast her lope is, as long as it stays at a lope, and not a fast trot, or gallop. Once she gets the right lead, collect her and you choose the speed.

If you don't think you can handle her, get your trainer to ride her at a lope a few times before you. I don't think you should sell her unless you want to, or YOU think you should.

I ride western too, but I am experienced and know how to handle a green broke horse.
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post #9 of 21 Old 12-27-2012, 11:11 PM
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I'm "eh" on the idea of selling because you have a trainer. But you are green, and so is she, and you are going to get hurt. So long as you can understand that and are willing to take the risks, so be it.

Your horse probably can tell you are nervous. That nervousness isn't a good thing to have as it tenses you up, and makes you very rigid. Your horse may have bucked because you are making her uncomfortable/ causing pain.

Breezy is not experienced and is learning to break her horse for the first time. I will not say to completely disregard her opinion, but its times like this to have your bs meter on.
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post #10 of 21 Old 12-28-2012, 09:14 AM
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You need to be relaxed in the hips. If not the you are tense from head to toe which the horse senses. Novice riders, when a horse starts to pitch, will often lean forward and draw the legs up and squeeze. It's not a tube of toothpaste. Horses are sensitive in the area where the heels press, the pitching gets worse and because of the rider's position, they part company. To ride out bucking you need to keep your body upright and push your legs forward and keep your heels down but still relaxed. I suspect the horse hasn't gotten her balance yet when asked to canter and this often scares them and leads to bucking.
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