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rizzodm
Aug. 22, 2009, 11:03 AM
I am riding a new horse and would like tips for helping him relax at the canter. He comes to us after doing nothing for two years. He is a 16 yr. Appy that raced as a youngster. He was retrained as an eventer. He was started back with lungeing for a week and I have been riding him for the last week at a trot and very little canter. He is doing very well but gets a little tense at the canter. What exercises could I work on to help him relax.

Thanks
Dawn

angel
Aug. 22, 2009, 12:13 PM
This is rather like calling a doctor on the phone and saying that you have a fever. Then, you ask the doctor what is causing it, so you can fix it. The doctor says: "take two aspirin and call me in the morning," which means he hopes you will get better.

I'll tell you to go back and ride the canter some more, and call me when you can post a picture so we can actually see what is happening. That way we can tell you better than to "take two aspirin."

pintopiaffe
Aug. 22, 2009, 01:22 PM
Back in work for two weeks is not nearly enough time to build strength for canter.

Two months, *maybe*...

Some horses have to be pretty solid in their lateral work before canter is strong and balanced.

ThreeFigs
Aug. 22, 2009, 01:43 PM
Agree with the two above. Two weeks is nothing!

Establish relaxation in the other gaits first before asking for canter. Then, when you do, keep it short. Come back to trot before he tenses up, if you can. Re-establish relaxation and try again. If anticipation becomes a problem, do something else, perhaps working on other transitions (walk-trot-walk, trot-halt-trot, that sort of thing), or bending turns. When he's relaxed again and not anticipating, you can try the canter again.

rizzodm
Aug. 22, 2009, 01:47 PM
Agree with the two above. Two weeks is nothing!

Establish relaxation in the other gaits first before asking for canter. Then, when you do, keep it short. Come back to trot before he tenses up, if you can. Re-establish relaxation and try again. If anticipation becomes a problem, do something else, perhaps working on other transitions (walk-trot-walk, trot-halt-trot, that sort of thing), or bending turns. When he's relaxed again and not anticipating, you can try the canter again.

Thank you this is what we will do.

Dawn

goeslikestink
Aug. 22, 2009, 03:25 PM
Back in work for two weeks is not nearly enough time to build strength for canter.

Two months, *maybe*...

Some horses have to be pretty solid in their lateral work before canter is strong and balanced.

agree 100%

goeslikestink
Aug. 22, 2009, 03:26 PM
Agree with the two above. Two weeks is nothing!

Establish relaxation in the other gaits first before asking for canter. Then, when you do, keep it short. Come back to trot before he tenses up, if you can. Re-establish relaxation and try again. If anticipation becomes a problem, do something else, perhaps working on other transitions (walk-trot-walk, trot-halt-trot, that sort of thing), or bending turns. When he's relaxed again and not anticipating, you can try the canter again.

agree 1000%