Horse won't budge!! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 48 Old 12-21-2011, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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Question Horse won't budge!!

I'm going riding on Christmas eve :) apart from the horse planned for me to take out isn't, lets say, the most athletic horse and needs 'some' encourgement to get her going.
I'm afraid I generally ride the ones who need NO encouragement so I have little idea how to get her going. I've tried using left leg, right leg, repetitively but that didn't work, I've tried using a whip to back up behind my leg. Any other ideas???

99% of the time, its the riders fault.
Flicka 13yo Haflinger Mare.
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post #2 of 48 Old 12-21-2011, 07:49 AM
Green Broke
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Are you talking about from a stand still or just going faster?

From a stand still, get her to start turning to "unstick" her feet.

If she's already moving, squeeze both legs, bump both legs, use the crop/whip and keep increasing the pressure until she responds. Even if it's just for a few strides, that's a start. If you stop before she responds, you are just teaching her to ignore your cues. If tapping her behind your leg doesn't work, try her butt. If tapping doesn't work, give her a smack then a whack. Whatever it's going to take to get her to respond. If you start with little pressure first and increase, she will start responding to the lighter pressure.

Have you thought of using spurs (if you know how to use them correctly)?
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Last edited by usandpets; 12-21-2011 at 07:54 AM.
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post #3 of 48 Old 12-21-2011, 02:34 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you- I will give them a go.
And about spurs- of course I won't start using them till a instructor has taught me to do so, but, whats the general idea about using them?

99% of the time, its the riders fault.
Flicka 13yo Haflinger Mare.
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post #4 of 48 Old 12-22-2011, 05:16 AM
Green Broke
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Spurs are just a reinforcement of your cues just like a whip or crop. You don't jab them into the horse. You put them against their side just like you do your calves. If that still has no effect, you roll them. Usually that's enough to get them to move.
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post #5 of 48 Old 12-25-2011, 12:46 AM
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Did the whip work? If so, I don't see why you don't just use that.

Have you heard of "the lesson of the leg"? It's a remedial exercise for a horse that likes to ignore leg aids. I would only do it in an enclosed arena, and also you do have to have a reasonably good seat before you try it. You will need a whip. What you do is, first apply your usual leg aid for an upward transition. The horse should move out promptly and with noticeable energy. Not just a sluggish amble. If that doesn't happen, you then apply a stronger leg aid. Both times, you are applying the aid only one time--no nagging. If the horse doesn't move forward smartly and promptly from this, you then (make sure your reins are loose and) apply the original soft leg aid and smack with the whip at the same time! You should be smacking hard enough so that the horse jerks forward. The reins need to be loose so that you can guarantee you're not yanking on his mouth when he moves forward. If he goes faster than you wanted, you let him go at that pace for a minute or so, praising him, and then quietly bring him down to the pace you want. You'll probably have to do this a couple times, and some horses need reminders every few rides, but it really works.

Because the horse may go into a faster gait than you expect, you may prefer to get into jumping position and have your hands on the mane for the whip smack, rather than just loosening the rein.

By the time you read this I guess you'll have had your ride, so let us know how it went!
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post #6 of 48 Old 12-25-2011, 06:40 AM
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very similar to what i do ruleofreason.

apply soft lef, med leg, hard leg. if they arent going to gait you want by now, cluck ONE TIME. if they dont move off, you need to smack them behind your leg until they gallop. make sure once they move forward you stop smacking them. once you do thisa couple times, they will learn they have 3 chances to move off of your leg. if they dont, they will hear the cluck and know whats coming next.

Gypsy & Scout <3
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. ~Albert Einstein
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post #7 of 48 Old 12-26-2011, 10:58 AM
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RuleofReason for the win.

That's how you educate a horse that ignores the leg.

Ask once. No nagging. If the question is ignored, demand and demand swiftly.
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post #8 of 48 Old 12-26-2011, 12:45 PM
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If you use a crop, be sure not to over-use it. It's an aid, not a punishment.
Also, having other horse buddies with him might help him move along a little faster.
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post #9 of 48 Old 12-26-2011, 01:56 PM
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I would say bring that crop with you and have alot of patience. Even if the horse only goes a few steps that is better than nothing. Give a good pat. I would squeeze with both legs, cluck or kiss and give a little tap with the crop.

With the crop find out the area on her/his body that seems to make them move. My horse will move more when I tap him on the shoulder than the butt, all horses are different.

If nothing else works try looking around and seeing if the horse is looking at something. I have had the problem with my guy were he will just stop and not move even if you slapped him on the butt. Get off, walk the horse over to the area and show them it is ok.

Light spurs are also good....try using some of those ideas...good luck! :)

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post #10 of 48 Old 12-26-2011, 06:27 PM
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I teach my riders to tap/press with the leg - no kicking!
1st leg aid - oh ok you were asleep!
2nd leg aid - go - great
if ignored
3rd leg aid with sharp whip behind leg
If still ignored then the stick gets turned up the otherway and is used first over hand on one side and rapidly behind the leg on the side it is being carried in.
Eg, stick in right hand - whack on the left, then rapidly whack on the right - 99% of horses will shoot forward from this.
Allow the horse to keep moving forward for a few strides before quietly slowing to the desired pace.
The moment the horse moves forward he must be rewarded - this means stop using leg and whips and then praise preferably with your voice or a stroke on the neck. Don't do this if he is already slowing down again as then you are paraising him for going slower.
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