from ground work to riding - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 03:37 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by TXhorseman View Post
Having a person on its back is quite different from having that same person on the ground where the horse can see him. Confident leadership must be communicated by feel rather than visual body language. A common factor that can help bridge this divide is verbal language. You can use your voice to help the horse understand how your actions while on its back relate to your actions while on the ground.

Good posture conveys confidence and authority. Many people do not realize how their posture while on the horse can be as effective as their posture while on the ground. While a horse cannot see the posture of rider, it can feel whether or not the rider is balanced. It can also feel if this rider is tense, a mass of mush, or presents a feeling of relaxed firmness.

It also helps if the rider has an open line of communication open with the horse. One that lets the horse know the rider is always available to provide reassurance and guidance.

Despite the cost, I suggest finding a good riding instructor who can guide you in establishing a good seat and good communication skills while on the horse. A bad experience with one instructor does not mean that all others will be the same. Even a few lessons with a good instructor may save you months or even years of frustration trying to figure out things on your own.
I don't believe there is anything wrong with my posture I feel secure in the saddle. I do find that it does help her when I verbally communicate with her both on the ground and in saddle ;)
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post #12 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 03:57 PM
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There is a clue in the fact that she had no trouble going back to the barn and wasn't spooky.
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post #13 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 04:10 PM
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A horse owner at my barn has a high energy gelding. She feeds him "jet fuel" and he gets no exercise. The times she has tried to ride him (inside in a very familiar area) he has spooked at even his own shadow and of course the ride is about 5 minutes long. Another boarder rode him for her and did not have the same trouble.

Did the experienced rider keep riding until your mare calmed down? I am thinking that if your mare is still nervous at the end of the ride, she sees reason to stay nervous as it ends the ride. Maybe if you go down to the barn on a day that you have all day and start riding inside, even at a walk, even just sitting on her while standing, until she is quiet and relaxed, THEN get off, it may get through to her. It will take more than once, of course, but the idea is that you don't get off her back until she is practically asleep under you.
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post #14 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 05:11 PM
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I am glad that you make her stick to the rules.

The fact that she heads home without any problem seems to point to the fact that she is just plain barn sour.
She walks out with you because that isn't work, when you are riding that is work and she has learned that by playing up, being spooky and refusing to go forward, she gets her own way.

Ride her out. When she refuses to go forward let her go back home but take her into the indoor arena and work her hard ride her at the trot and canter, frequent changes of direction, get her well and truly sweaty and puffing hard, when she is, ride her out at a walk, when she does it again, repeat the riding her hard.

Let her realise that outside she gets to catch her breath and walk, at the barn she works hard.

I will add that this is no how I would do it but I am a lot more experienced a rider.
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post #15 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Whinnie View Post
A horse owner at my barn has a high energy gelding. She feeds him "jet fuel" and he gets no exercise. The times she has tried to ride him (inside in a very familiar area) he has spooked at even his own shadow and of course the ride is about 5 minutes long. Another boarder rode him for her and did not have the same trouble.

Did the experienced rider keep riding until your mare calmed down? I am thinking that if your mare is still nervous at the end of the ride, she sees reason to stay nervous as it ends the ride. Maybe if you go down to the barn on a day that you have all day and start riding inside, even at a walk, even just sitting on her while standing, until she is quiet and relaxed, THEN get off, it may get through to her. It will take more than once, of course, but the idea is that you don't get off her back until she is practically asleep under you.
Hello ;) I always ALWAYS end on a positive note no matter how long.
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post #16 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 07:46 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Foxhunter View Post
I am glad that you make her stick to the rules.

The fact that she heads home without any problem seems to point to the fact that she is just plain barn sour.
She walks out with you because that isn't work, when you are riding that is work and she has learned that by playing up, being spooky and refusing to go forward, she gets her own way.

Ride her out. When she refuses to go forward let her go back home but take her into the indoor arena and work her hard ride her at the trot and canter, frequent changes of direction, get her well and truly sweaty and puffing hard, when she is, ride her out at a walk, when she does it again, repeat the riding her hard.

Let her realise that outside she gets to catch her breath and walk, at the barn she works hard.

I will add that this is no how I would do it but I am a lot more experienced a rider.
Hmmmm.this would be a new technique!! I'll give it a try. THANK YOU ;)
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post #17 of 24 Old 10-25-2015, 10:31 PM
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Well, if you always end on a positive note, Foxhunter is exactly right, she is just sour, probably both barn sour and arena sour (riding sour). Foxhunter's prescription will work.
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post #18 of 24 Old 10-26-2015, 12:00 PM
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Definitely get a trainer to evaluate the situation.

Another thing I would add to check is saddle/tack fit, though if she doesn't act up on the way back home then it seems reasonable that issue is behavioral/training rather than physical.

In order for Foxhunter's "prescription" to work you need to be willing to work her HARD when you bring her back to the barn/arena. It may not be pretty the whole time as she may object rather strenuously to being put back to work when she expects to be done. If you aren't confident that you can for sure do this yourself it would be good to enlist the help of another rider/trainer who is confident as the last thing you want her to learn is that escalating the behaviors even further will get her out of work.
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post #19 of 24 Old 10-26-2015, 03:20 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Whinnie View Post
Well, if you always end on a positive note, Foxhunter is exactly right, she is just sour, probably both barn sour and arena sour (riding sour). Foxhunter's prescription will work.
What do you suppose would cause a barn sour and ride sour horse? Is it possible her past could have something to do with it?
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post #20 of 24 Old 10-27-2015, 04:32 AM
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It can be several things, mostly it is not having a confident rider and in testing that rider, they find they get out of work.

They soon learn that if they can frighten the rider into dismounting, they finish work.

A rider returning from a ride, feeding the horse straight after and turning it out as soon as it is finished can lead that horse to want to get home as fast as possible get fed and then back out with its friends.

If you child burst into tears and threw a tantrum over having to wash the dishes and you said you would do them, next time you can expect the same reaction from the child, worked last time so why not this.

Some horses just do not have a good work ethic, they are just born with it!

Past can have a lot to do with present, of your mare got away with it with her last owner then she is going to try it on with someone else.

Horses, dogs and children are very sensitive to inner emotions. They react totally differently to someone who is confident and assertive to someone who is unsure.

An experienced rider might get on your mare and ride her with little problem. If she showed the slightest hesitation in going forward they would know and it automatically drive her forward, harder leg, maybe a crack with the whip, and she would know they mean business.

On the other hand it might be such a habit that she would try it on and need very firm corrections.
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