I had to use a crop :( - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 19 Old 06-27-2016, 08:08 PM
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We have a few lesson horses at my barn that EVERYONE needs to use a a crop on... or at least carry one. I wouldn't consider it a demotion at all. You don't want a horse to become so desensitized to leg pressures that you HAVE to kick, so a crop can be a good reminder to the horse to pay attention.

"In her dreams, she rides wild horses, and they carry her away on the wind." ~She Rides Wild Horses by Kenny Rogers
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post #12 of 19 Old 06-28-2016, 12:14 AM
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I don't agree with using a crop even if you are riding English and I think you should trust your instincts. If it made you feel bad that's because it was bad. I would question your instructor on the need to use a crop on your horse. Remember, you are paying the instructor, not the other way around.
I personally rode English for years and never used a crop.
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post #13 of 19 Old 06-28-2016, 01:37 PM
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Certainly, it helps to use a crop at times, and you should, even now, learn to carry one.

However, because you are still learning the basics, I think that also requiring you to "do more" is NOT helpful.

I would ask your instructor to help keep the horse going with a lunge whip. On the few occasions when I instruct a beginner, I don't expect them to "ride." I want them to be able to find their balance, be comfortable, and not worried about their horse.
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post #14 of 19 Old 06-28-2016, 05:22 PM
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Well, at my last lesson, my instructor decided I should start using a crop. I'm still just a beginner - been taking lessons once a week since February - but it still made me feel sort of bad. I'm doing posting trot, and having a very hard time keeping the horse at the right speed/pace while doing courses and turning. I haven't gotten the hang of post/kick/post/kick, I think. It's like my body won't cooperate or coordinate at the level I need to communicate with my horse.
You'll get there. It took me a solid year before my posting was any sort of respectful.

I'd be able to communicate everything with just my body and not need anything additional. I whined (lol) to my instructor that I really didn't want to use a crop, because it felt like cheating and/or training wheels
But here's the thing though: at your riding level, your bodily communication skills are not nearly sharp enough to use on their own. Riders must first hone all of the basics and develop independent hands, seat, and legs before communication can become refined. To be honest, using a crop is probably more clear to your horse than whatever sort of confusing things you are doing with all your limbs! (I mean this in the most endearing way, I promise).

Everyone is always in such a rush to get better, but the honest to goodness truth is the only thing that will make you a better rider are hours upon hours in the saddle. While watching videos and reading certainly isn't doing you any harm, what you need most is patience and practice. Time. Lessons every week, multiple times a week. Add those lessons up and the end of the year, and reflect on how far you came. You will be utterly and positively shocked.

Don't worry about your horse. Lesson horses are there to teach you, they're used to this stuff! Using a crop isn't in any way cruel, unless you are using it for blatantly abusive purposes, and a lot of those lesson horses have much more woah than go and almost require them. It's what makes them safe for novice riders such as yourself, but that often means they need a little more encouraging because they have learned that they can putt along with very little effort - because riders like you aren't going to correct them and tell them otherwise!
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post #15 of 19 Old 06-28-2016, 08:07 PM
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And here am I having to earn the 'right' to carry a whip on my own horse in lessons! She isn't dead to the leg, just knows better in most situations, so now I CAN get her moving with calf, and I am not interfering with her mouth anymore, now I have a schooling whip to get her sharp in her change of gait.
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post #16 of 19 Old 06-28-2016, 08:16 PM
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senecawoman where are you coming from?

OP, sounds like you aren't even actually USING the crop!!

The plan sounds very odd to me, what I would suggest doing instead of the crop is to vocalize the rhythm, this can be counting or clucking with your tongue (he may speed up with that) or whatever. The crop tapping him must be pretty darn annoying and I think it will make things much more difficult for you, that's also just a very odd way to train the horse imo, and I don't see any positive effects from it. Counting will help you AND horse your with the rhythm without another thing to worry about physically or get in the way.

"Use the crop on yourself" was meant as a joke, but if you are concerned about hurting him, then do try that, you'll realize how harmless a tap is!!

By courses I assume you mean patterns and you aren't doing jump courses yet?
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post #17 of 19 Old 06-29-2016, 04:55 PM Thread Starter
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To be honest, using a crop is probably more clear to your horse than whatever sort of confusing things you are doing with all your limbs! (I mean this in the most endearing way, I promise).
Ah, yes! This concept right here is the one that made me much happier with the whole arrangement. Because I know my horse is really trying the best he can to do what I'm asking, but I'm sure it's much harder with my bizarro, unpracticed aids. So I feel much better knowing that I have a tool that makes it easier to communicate with him.

HOWEVER this Monday I rode the lesson without a crop, although my instructor said I could use it if I wanted. I tried to keep the "tube of toothpaste" concept in my head, as well as vocalizing the rhythm. Saying "one, two" with the gait has always helped me, especially over trot poles. It felt much more natural this time than the kicking. We also started sitting the trot (yay!). So everyone's advice came in very handy and I really had a great lesson. Although I'm glad to know that using a crop isn't the end of the world if I should need it again.

By courses I assume you mean patterns and you aren't doing jump courses yet?
Yes, that's probably a better term (sorry if I misuse some lingo - still learning!) My instructor sets up trot poles and obstacles like cones or boxes for me and a follow a pattern through or around them. I am not set to start jumping until the end of the summer.

Thanks so much, everyone!
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post #18 of 19 Old 06-29-2016, 06:27 PM
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I'm so glad your lesson went well! Attitude makes all the difference when it comes to riding, and it seems you're eager to learn. Good job (:
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c'est la vie
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post #19 of 19 Old 07-01-2016, 02:55 PM
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I use a bat when I ride english. Typically I ride western and we don't post. Needless to say, when you aren't yet able ro communicate well I think it can help make everything go a bit smoother.
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begginer , lesson , posting trot

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