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Ranch Trail questions

2391 Views 70 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  farmpony84
First question is on the bit. This show will let you ride in a snaffle no matter the age of the horse. I read the rules on the bits but the bit I have with the shank (it's a mylar level 1) is called snaffle. Is it actually considered a snaffle? Can I use it for show? The second bit is the one I'll use if I can't. The question on that one is slobber strap? Yes?

Next question is on the rain slicker. I put a jacket on a post and pulled it off. I put it left and right and crossed it over the back and laid it there then on the withers. I rode around the ring and then hung it back up. What amount of movement and shaking it around are you actually expected to do? Do you just pick it up and move it from point a to point b or do you have to lay it on the horse?

The log. I set up a pole and have the rope on it so I pulled the log around the pole but when I put it back I didn't quite get it close enough so I pulled it close by using my hands and then hung the rope back up. Can I do that or do I ride around again until it's lined up close to the pole again? Does it have to be put back close to the pole or does it matter?

And last question (for now)... The rope. I can swing the rope over my head and throw it onto the "cow" but I can't figure out how to hold it and the reins. Do you put the reins down when you do it? Do you hold it and the reins in your left hand? Do you throw from a certain side of the horse or does it matter (the head - left right over top?)
Brown Luggage and bags Tartan Sleeve Bag
Sleeve Bag Luggage and bags Strap Electric blue
Automotive tire Carabiner Tool Rock-climbing equipment Electrical wiring
Carabiner Rock-climbing equipment Electrical wiring Automotive tire Rope (rhythmic gymnastics)

Thanks....
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Tease it to within an inch of its life and spray the living heck out of it....馃ぃ actually those donut things work fairly well once you get the hang of them. My solution was to just cut it all off. I've had some really cute asymmetrical cuts that I've liked. Worked OK under a hat.
 
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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
@QtrBel Hairspray was a mistake this weekend. Omigosh, I had it in a pony tail and when I took it out, it was so knotted I had to put conditioner in it to brush it and then when I got up in the morning, (after my shower) I still had tangles! I don't know what I did to make it do that... but yikes!
 

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You didn't use ENOUGH hairspray. You have to have helmet hair. It has to be the old fashioned kind. Then there is no movement so no knots. At the end of the day you wet and liberally pour a bucket of diluted, warm as you can stand if creme rinse over your head. Rinse and repeat. I'm actually serious. That's how they handled my hair when I was showing drafts in TX. I hated show days for that reason.
 
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Discussion Starter · #44 ·
@QtrBel so you are talking 1990 and bullet proof? Like rodeo queen hair? Ok.... I can try that.
 
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Discussion Starter · #45 ·
By the way... I finally saw my scores. Now all I was aiming for were zeros. I started off with mostly -1/2 and then moved up to 1 or 2 zeros and finally, last class... mostly zeros and even some +1/2s so we really did improve! I feel SO much better about it now. I still feel like we sucked but at least I know our suck improved! I'm slightly excited now!
 

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That's what used to be done and that was the reason. Yes. Bullet proof is a good way to describe it. All this soft hold stuff just encouraged tangles. One of the women that would help out when we were short handed around the barn and was part of our show team was a hairdresser.
 
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I ride in a Myler level 1 shank. I would like o add just a bit "more". What would be a good intermediate shank to try?
I wouldn't change the length of the shank. If he's ready I'd try a little bit of a port. I make sure my horses can ride in it then I save my show bit for shows and school in something similar but less than what I show in.
Honestly I don't think you need to change your bit, you were nervous, his first trip to town. That's a lot!
The more you guys go, the calmer you'll get and he'll start to calm down too!


AND can I use a training fork with split reins and a shank? I haven't used any training devices yet but feel like we are at the point where we can start refining things. (I had zero headset at this show - we were both way to up to focus on that sort of thing)
You can, I have. But- keep the martingale/forks adjusted loose. Make sure you have guards on your reins. And introduce it on the ground first. As a dumb kid I flipped a horse over backwards on myself for not doing the above first.

I haven't had to use a martingale in a long time but I always adjusted it so the horse ran into it on his own if his head was on upside down. Loose enough that it doesn't engage everytime you pick up a rein. It's just a reminder that he doesn't get to flip his head up to avoid contact and not to constantly hold his head in position. Otherwise once you take it off his head will just go up.

A side note on head position: the trainer I ride with is a NRCHA judge, I've asked him about headsets and been to judging seminars, they said the same- Judges aren't going to mark you down if your horse is being ridden with a natural headset. They will mark you down if his head is on upside down or if he isn't soft and doesn't come back to you when you lift your reins.

Another question.... Hair. What do you do with your hair when it's thin and scraggly like mine? It looks awful in a pony tail but worse down.
Everyone I knows pulls it into a low pony but you could curl it or do heatless waves the night before, shake it out in the a.m. then pull into a pony.
My hair is really long(past my butt) so I have to braid it.

Anyhow, don't beat yourself up because it didn't go as planned! Be proud of yourself for going and your scores showed improvement as the show progressed. Keep going, the show nerves will back off and he will get used to going. You guys just need to get seasoned!

Next year I'm showing NRCHA and I planned on taking my old horse to some local shows to help me get re-seasoned because I haven't shown since 2019. But that's out as he's crippled for the summer. I'm already nervous for next year...
When I was showing regularly the show nerves were pretty minimal. The more i went the easier it got and I get like you, I have literally puked before walking into the pen.

You got this, keep going!
 

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I have really pretty headset at home and I can droop the reins at home. He gives well and stops well at home. I ride with two hands a lot at home so I need to stop doing that. I am quiet and use my seat at home. I KNOW that at the show I wasn't using my seat right. I KNEW it while I was riding and I tried so hard to fix myself but I was so stiff and tense. And he was SO up that he was being a little rotten. He doesn't throw his head and he hasn't ridden with a gaped mouth since he was three but I stopped using my reins and I'm not sure I used my seat at all. I also steered with my hands first and legs second. I know I did bad but yeah, maybe you are right. If I can't ride correctly outside of lessons and home then maybe I should stay with the level one bit.
Then I would NOT change your bit. If you can do these things at home, and know you weren't riding right at the show, then do not be quick to go brashly change your bit. Stay with what you have. Work on YOU.

It's okay, we're all guilty of not riding like we know we can, when under the judge's eye. Don't be so hard on yourself.

But don't change your bit. I don't see a reason to.
 

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Next year I'm showing NRCHA and I planned on taking my old horse to some local shows to help me get re-seasoned because I haven't shown since 2019. But that's out as he's crippled for the summer. I'm already nervous for next year... When I was showing regularly the show nerves were pretty minimal. The more i went the easier it got and I get like you, I have literally puked before walking into the pen.
Slight derailment ... WOOHOO @COWCHICK77 !! So glad you're getting back in the cowhorse show pen!! I used to have BAD show nerves; eventually got over them. But expect they'll be back once I start back in ...
 

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Slight derailment ... WOOHOO @COWCHICK77 !! So glad you're getting back in the cowhorse show pen!! I used to have BAD show nerves; eventually got over them. But expect they'll be back once I start back in
Thank you, me too! I feel like it's been one set back after another to get back to it but next season it's happening. Rey Banz will be a competive non-pro horse for me.
You are going to show Scarlett next year, right?? Until the new baby is ready?

Show nerves are the worst. No one will put the pressure on me like I put on myself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
I had my lesson today. We worked on walk and trot for the entire hour. And halt. He showed my how to set the head with one hand, it's something I never really got. But he broke it down and we ended up with a good forward working walk where he moved from behind into his bit and then we got a really nice working trot. He also showed me how to use the training fork but he basically said I need to ride without it for most of my ride and when I was just about done, then put it on and work on one handed. He also said I am NOT allowed to canter with it. And yes, he agreed with the no changing the bit. He said neither me or Cloud are ready for that. I felt like our lesson was really productive though.
 

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Unsolicited advice-
Riding in a bridle lift up on your reins not down. In a bridle the idea of hands down which seems to be beaten into us, is redundant.
Lift while also cueing with your legs and seat.
At least that was how I was taught.
However when I get nervous, the leg and seat diminishes and I get aggressive with my hand. I think most people do, it's our nature.
Teddy Robinsin always said to teach the horse to take a pull in case you need to use it....
 
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Discussion Starter · #55 ·
Unsolicited advice-
Riding in a bridle lift up on your reins not down. In a bridle the idea of hands down which seems to be beaten into us, is redundant.
Lift while also cueing with your legs and seat.
At least that was how I was taught.
However when I get nervous, the leg and seat diminishes and I get aggressive with my hand. I think most people do, it's our nature.
Teddy Robinsin always said to teach the horse to take a pull in case you need to use it....
That is exactly what we worked on in my lesson! I couldn't believe the difference I saw in just one hour. I didn't ride today because it was black flag weather but I'll try it again tomorrow.
 
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@farmpony84 do not get so caught up on headset. You DO NOT want the horse's nose behind the vertical nor do you want it too low. This is ranch horse.

I just returned from a show. Most of the classes had 15+ entries in each class. My horse walked away with WINS or high places (2nd or 3rd) in a lot of them. His headset looks no different than your first photo.

I'm working on getting my videos up on YouTube. I'll post the links when I am done so you can see. The judges are less concerned about headset in the ranch classes and more concerned with the expression of your horse's face (ears forward, looks happy, soft in the bridle).
 

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Discussion Starter · #57 ·
@beau159 I'm not looking for western pleasure. I think "headset" is probably the wrong word for me to use. I'm trying to make him move from behind into the bridle more than setting his head. I'm not ready to post a video yet. There were so many things people can/will pick out and I am the kind of person that can really only focus on one thing at a time. So if you throw all my "bads" at me at once I'll be a hot mess.

But I agree. There were only a few horses that had "head set" the way the pleasure horses have it. Most had a more natural carriage, which I actually like better.
Horse Working animal Horse tack Halter Bit
 

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If you want to get really technical, the photo you just posted would have you dinged by the judges. His nose is behind the vertical. Granted the photo is just a snapshot in time. But otherwise, looks good. I think loosening your reins a tad would help.

There's one gal that's usually at the shows that has done really, really well with her little horse for ranch horse. He's a cool cat. But he actually kind of travels with his nose stuck OUT a ways. But it works for them. She won the all around on him last year for the versatility show and won it again on him this year. His neck is fairly level for the most part, but he sticks his nose out.

Did not ask you to post a video?? I said I will post mine when I get them uploaded. I certainly don't do everything perfect either. There's always, always something you wish you could have done better. I messed him up on our Ranch reining. I didn't get him set up right for the first lead change and so we were crossfired for a couple strides which cost us points. Then our VRH ranch riding, I tried to push him too much in the extended trot and he barely broke into a lope with his front end, but that cost us as well. And yes, he did very well in many of the other classes when I got my poop in a group and did my part, but there's always something to pick apart on yourself.

And there were lots of messed up patterns. A couple horses bucked (one went halfway around the ring). Etc. Etc. We've all been there!!! If you aren't embarrassed, challenged and humbled by your horse at least once in a while, then you aren't doing it right! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #59 ·
I think I was lifting up on the reins in the photo. He has a training fork on (first time I used it) so his head wouldn't be that low in "real life". I struggle that's for sure....
 

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Discussion Starter · #60 ·
Another "dumb" question....

Do you always turn away from the rail in the spin? When the girl talked me through the patter she said "You always spin away form the rail" but I'm not sure if she was talking about that specific pattern or always?
 
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