Hi Guys. I'm brand new here, so bear with me. Just seeking out a little advice...
I have a 6 year old quarter horse mare. I've had her just over a year and when she came to me she had 60 days cutting training, and 30 days reining training. She was primarily used in team penning and trail riding. When I bought her I didn't have a set riding discipline. I rode/ride western but my primary focus was just trail riding. I got her in the hopes to finally pick a route, either team penning or reining. Fast forward a few months and I decided to go with reining. Probably not my best decision...but at least I picked one. Also, reining is more prevalent in my area than cows, so reining is it. Fast forward another few months- I had been working with a great trainer, for both me and my horse and then BOOM. The trainer just left. This action created a revolving door of trainers and instructors through the barn. Each of which I worked with, and each of which told me to ride a different way. VERY frustrating.
So now here we are- I have been riding for 5 months without any lessons/ training and I feel lost. My mare will not "collect" any more and she feels like she has lost a lot of her "softness." I was riding in a modified billy allen bit and have switched over to just an o-ring snaffle. I have also added a LOT of ground work to our daily routines. And when I ride we do a lot of transitions- speed transitions and direction transitions. I've been doing this for three weeks straight, and still no improvement. She holds her head high, drops it really low when backing, ect...I KNOW she knows the right way, she used to do it all the time, but obviously we are not communicating effectively.
Any advice? I think one the biggest helps for me is to find a new barn, and while I am considering it, I would really like to work through these problems on my own first.