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Hey all! I'll just preface this by saying that I'm a beginner novice eventer, I've been eventing for about a year. I am also working closely with my fantastic trainer, so I'm not figuring out these issues on my own. Just thought I'd use this forum as an alternative resource as there are lots of very knowledgeable people on here.

So the training the dressage aspect of our eventing with my gelding has been slow going (but Rome wasn't built in a day!) and so far we've progressed from him being afraid of the bit and moving very shortly, to now he understands how to MOVE his bum, and he is accepting the bit more and more every day. He is also a fairly reactive/sassy diva horse who is prone to 'temper tantrums' if he doesn't understand/feel like hes working too hard. Those are decreasing as we work through his issues.

Now the hurdle we're facing at the moment is that he gets very 'stuck' in his body when we are doing circles/bending. He'll trot around the ring all day on the bit (getting there) and looking pretty, then the minute I go to turn or make a circle or bend him he resists.

Anyways, I was just looking for some bending exercises to do with him as an aside to the stuff I'm doing with my trainer. Thanks!
 

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A horse is not prone to temper tantrums or has no work either, they merely react to rider's actions. If the horse is blocked, the rider is mistimed or strong in the aids the horse often times then will over react (esp to pain on the bars if the horse is too closed/low or over tempo/onto the forehand. The issues are really more of the rider needing to apply aids/exercise progressively so the horse CAN answer/be more willing instead of less so.

So, what are your aids for asking a horse to bend on a circle....and what size circle? Remember light lateral flexion precedes bending. Have you progressively introduced the rein effects (first opening rein, then support of the outside connection). Are you stirrup stepping to start the circle? Is the inside leg closed to the girth and the outside leg more down and back?

In what way does the horse 'resist'? Falling out/in/slowoing/quickening/coming above the bit/curling?

Bending exercises include circles/half circles/figure eights/serpentines...and most importantly riding (three stride) corners properly. One corner can be ridden with a slightly opening rein, another more an indirect rein.
 
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