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Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 01:07 PM
[Mod note: Original OP of this thread by hitchinmygetalong, prior to posts being moved from other thread:

Not to derail a perfectly good thread, I noticed on a photo posted recently that a horse was being ridden with side reins by a student in what I assume was a dressage lesson. It was mentioned that this is a decidedly bad idea.

Could you please explain to me why?

Thanks!]


[The following is the post by Ambrey that prompted this discussion orginally:]

My daughter is having a blast learning basics on her 1/2 welsh hony, and he's really coming along in training now.

http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/IMG_1000.jpg
http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/IMG_1027.jpg
http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/IMG_1021.jpg

egontoast
Sep. 6, 2009, 04:48 PM
Ambrey, what the heck is that pony wearing? It's hard to see but there are double reins, a flash and sidereins? What level is the pony training at?

CatOnLap
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:11 PM
Ambrey, what the heck is that pony wearing? ... there are double reins, a flash and sidereins?
That's how it appeared to me too, :eek: and I thought I must be mistaken. It also appears the side reins are attached to the curb rein and low on the girth-severe in either case. :eek: That is either a very very tiny child or that p/h-ony is a horse about 15.2 hh. It doesn't appear to be dressage either, in that get up. Isn't this a thread about dressage ponies? :confused:

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:13 PM
Ambrey, what the heck is that pony wearing? It's hard to see but there are double reins, a flash and sidereins? What level is the pony training at?

You know I train in the pelham dressage capital of the world. Our motto "love in every heart, a pelham in every tack box." Or something like that, I forget :winkgrin:

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:17 PM
A pelham is not a bit for proper dressage training any more than a 15.1 horse is a pony. Enough already.

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:18 PM
We shall have to agree to disagree, on a lot of things.

MistyBlue
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:49 PM
Please, for safety's sake, read this concerning riding with side reins:
http://www.equisearch.com/horses_riding_training/english/dressage/eqreins2640/
It's quite dangerous, for both horse and rider. Side reins are made and attached specifically for lungeing and not riding.
Or you can read up on it in a variety of other equine training books or magazine articles. It simply isn't safe enough to consider using as a tool for a rider. Most especially not for a child. :no:

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:52 PM
Not to derail a perfectly good thread, I noticed on a photo posted recently that a horse was being ridden with side reins by a student in what I assume was a dressage lesson. It was mentioned that this is a decidedly bad idea.

Could you please explain to me why?

Thanks!

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 6, 2009, 05:53 PM
Please don't derail this informative thread. Take the side-rein arguments here. (http://www.chronicleforums.com/Forum/showthread.php?p=4356964#post4356964)

Thanks!

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:03 PM
Exactly the same reason the SRS uses them.

egontoast
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:05 PM
Ambrey, it was an honest question. I could not figure out what I was seeing. So it's a pelham with a flash and side reins?

What is the thinking there? I'm not rabidly anti pelham in some circumstances but have never seen one with a flash and side reins. What issues would require this? Also, on the lunge, do you need all this?

I would really like to know why this would be done. perhaps there is a good reason .

BaroquePony
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:07 PM
Exactly the same reason the SRS uses them.

And what reason would that be exactly?

mbm
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:20 PM
because it allows a learning rider (leaning how to sit on a horse, have independent seat etc) to concentrate of learning to ride without having to worry about keeping the horse on the bit and round - which by the way allows the rider a place to sit, a swinging back, ease of aiding etc etc.

in other words: learning to ride is a lot easier on a horse that is together and going correctly. however, a learning rider does not have the skill to keep a horse together.

hence side reins.

nothing nefarious about it!

woodcat
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:28 PM
Ambrey's daughter's (my granddaughter) hony is training under an extremely competent trainer and all the tack is as he requests.
The hony fights keeping in frame, so with the side reins she can develop softer hands.
The hony tends to get the bit under his tongue, thus the flash. She longes this way, and, part of the time, rides this way, under the trainer's supervision.
The hony has a mind of his own, although he seems to like his "job" better these days, and we hope the need for side reins will go away.
He's very forward... and needs the Pelham to keep his attention while on his job.

egontoast
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:35 PM
Ambrey's daughter's (my granddaughter) hony is training under an extremely competent trainer and all the tack is as he requests.
The hony fights keeping in frame, so with the side reins she can develop softer hands.
The hony tends to get the bit under his tongue, thus the flash. She longes this way, and, part of the time, rides this way, under the trainer's supervision.
The hony has a mind of his own, although he seems to like his "job" better these days, and we hope the need for side reins will go away.
He's very forward... and needs the Pelham to keep his attention while on his job.

Sorry, but this shows a lcomplete lack of understanding of dressage training. If you don't believe me, maybe check with someone you admire who has successfully trained dressage horses up the levels.

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:39 PM
because it allows a learning rider (leaning how to sit on a horse, have independent seat etc) to concentrate of learning to ride without having to worry about keeping the horse on the bit and round - which by the way allows the rider a place to sit, a swinging back, ease of aiding etc etc.

in other words: learning to ride is a lot easier on a horse that is together and going correctly. however, a learning rider does not have the skill to keep a horse together.

hence side reins.

nothing nefarious about it!

Thank you, MBM. Not only that, it allows a pony with a very sensitive mouth to not be bumped when said learning rider is learning something new (like, in this case, canter transitions that don't include "kick kick kick!"). Side reins are only during sessions in a controlled environment with the trainer, sometimes on a longe and sometimes off.

These photos were not of dressage training for the horse. She's not a trainer, she's 12. However, if you'd seen inverted llama pony a year ago vs. now, and if you could see him going along so nicely with said learning rider and just being so good to her, or if you could see him stretch over the topline, really get under himself and go forward, you'd know that dressage training is turning him into a different horse (and her into a different rider).

Yes, he is sometimes schooled in a pelham. No, he is never schooled under saddle in side reins, draw reins, a running martingale, etc. Being schooled in a pelham will probably be why he and my daughter never make FEI :winkgrin:

Oh, sorry, no he's not a pony. Tiny kid, he's around 15hh.

p.s. the flash- yes, he puts his tongue over the bit. I try to keep it loose enough so that he can eat hay, but not do the tongue thing- this is something he's done in every bit I've ever had him in. If you have other suggestions I'd love to hear them.

mbm
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:42 PM
hey egon - l honestly , i am not sure about others, but i am really tired of reading you attacking various posters relentlessly. we get the point. really we do.

as for your latest missive - it's a kid. and kids need to be safe. the horse looks as if it is going fairly well and the kid looks to have very nice hands.

can't you just play nice once in a while? the board would be a better place if you did.

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:49 PM
Sorry, but this shows a lcomplete lack of understanding of dressage training. If you don't believe me, maybe check with someone you admire who has successfully trained dressage horses up the levels.

egon, I answered your questions in the other thread.

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:49 PM
Um...Woodcat, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but "hony" is not a cutsey horse-related word. There's a reason people snicker at you when you use it.

www.urbandictionary.com and make sure your granddaughter is unable to read the computer screen.

egontoast
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:50 PM
mbm, I expressed my comments in a respectful manner. The 'child' is not the one making the decsions.

[edit]

MistyBlue
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:51 PM
Unfortunately it looks as if the article I psted above is being ignored. I think the point some may be trying to make is that riding with side reins isn't safe at all. It's a pretty dangerous situation to put a young rider in. Few experienced trainers would attempt it. It's also quite dangerous for the horse also to be ridden in side reins.
That's basic Horse and Rider Safety 101 and it's surprising to see a trainer would put a small child on a green horse in that set up. As a parent I'd be furious due to the raised possibility of serious injury. :no:

FancyFree
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:52 PM
Um...Woodcat, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but "hony" is not a cutsey horse-related word. There's a reason people snicker at you when you use it.

www.urbandictionary.com and make sure your granddaughter is unable to read the computer screen.

I never heard that before, not that I use that word anyway. Thanks Bey. :lol:

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:54 PM
because it allows a learning rider (leaning how to sit on a horse, have independent seat etc) to concentrate of learning to ride without having to worry about keeping the horse on the bit and round - which by the way allows the rider a place to sit, a swinging back, ease of aiding etc etc.

in other words: learning to ride is a lot easier on a horse that is together and going correctly. however, a learning rider does not have the skill to keep a horse together.

hence side reins.

nothing nefarious about it!

So this is something that can be used in the famous "green horse-green rider" situation?

I guess it is a "case by case" scenario, then. I have never seen a ridden lesson with side reins, so it did take me by surprise. Then again, my exposure to dressage training has been limited.

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:56 PM
Just trying to keep COTH clean and safe for the young-uns!

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 06:59 PM
Unfortunately it looks as if the article I psted above is being ignored. I think the point some may be trying to make is that riding with side reins isn't safe at all. It's a pretty dangerous situation to put a young rider in. Few experienced trainers would attempt it. It's also quite dangerous for the horse also to be ridden in side reins.
That's basic Horse and Rider Safety 101 and it's surprising to see a trainer would put a small child on a green horse in that set up. As a parent I'd be furious due to the raised possibility of serious injury. :no:

I responded in the other thread :confused:

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:07 PM
It can be used in situations in which professionals think it would help the situation. I would not call it a "green horse, green rider" situation. Horse goes well on the bit when offered soft contact and educated hands. Rider has been in regular lessons for over 2 years (mostly with a h/j barn) and has a strong seat, but is still learning how to bring a horse on the bit.

The only thing it allows is the horse to have a steady contact when he otherwise might not. If the horse had a habit of misbehaving it wouldn't do a thing to stop it (and would be much more dangerous).

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:10 PM
You know what, the questions are really OK, and certainly nothing I haven't asked myself or talked to others I trust about.

I just really wish we could delete all of our posts about them and move them to the other thread, so dressage ponies could continue to get the discussion they deserve :(

AnotherRound
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:11 PM
My daughter is having a blast learning basics on her 1/2 welsh hony, and he's really coming along in training now.

http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/IMG_1000.jpg
http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/IMG_1027.jpg
http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/IMG_1021.jpg


Excuse me, but this is a thread about ponies (not 15.2 hand horses) and dressage. Since when do you train dressage in a pelham and side reins???

Edited to add: I hadn't read all the other comments, and the new thread, in which you didn't respond to the questions put to you, actually, however, YOU were the one who brought it up in this thread, that's why people addressed you in this thread. YOU posted picutures of a horse You have in the past declared him 15.2 hands) in a pony thread, and YOU posted photos of a child being trained under extremely questionable practices apparently with the approval of adults with questionable judgement, so YOU are the one who created the topics which are derailing the discussion of the OP, not others.

AnotherRound
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:18 PM
No thinking parent I know would put their child in that situation. No thinking horseman I know would consider that dressage. But whatever gets you there, I guess is what's important. If you can put your child on a horse which appears to go with its head in its chest, it must be a-okay.

narcisco
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:19 PM
Traditionally, a horse is being longed in sidereins with the rider. The rider probably would not be holding the reins. The longeur has a longe line on the horse in case of a buck or putting the head down, etc.

There's a lot of leverage in the rig described. If the horse were to reach down to scratch a fly on his leg, he could step through the sidereins and a somersault wreck could ensue. Having the horse on the longe could prevent that kind of wreck.

People do it. I longe riders in sidereins and that's it.

CatOnLap
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:20 PM
And what reason would that be exactly?


I saw the SRS used side reins to school the horses in hand, in between pillars and on the longe. I never saw any of the riders using them to ride in, off the longe.

But then, it is said they make the students sit on the longe for the first year or more in order to develop an independant seat. Side reins are useful in that situation.

Side reins while riding are not anything that is recommended in dressage. Our coaching certification exam actually failed someone who forgot to remove the side reins after taking the horse off the longe line.

I also never saw a pelham in use at the SRS.

That was certainly a curious combination- side reins, pelham and flash. Even more curious that a dressage trainer would recommend it. One works with what one has, I suppose. If one has a green horse, a small even greener rider, all that stuff is said to be necessary to control the horse, well, sorry, that is just not dressage training. I am astounded someone would post that here as an example of it.

mbm
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:23 PM
i have seen more lessons (lunge especially) with side reins that i can count, including ones where i was rider.

there isnt any more danger than any other horse activity.

it is a very good way to allow a leaning rider to get a feel for how a horse on the bit goes..... it can really help the rider.

various riding schools use this method.... including the SRS, and The old Von Neindorf (sp) school.

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:26 PM
LOL, his head is about 3 degrees behind the vertical in one picture, and either on or in front of it in every other. In the BTV picture, the side reins are loose, showing that she was taking up too much contact and needed to correct it. Doing the wrong thing is part of learning.

FancyFree
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:26 PM
I've never seen anyone ride in side-reins off the longeline. I was always told that's very dangerous. Longing in side-reins you see a lot. When with a rider, usually a beginner, there no reins for the rider to hold.

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:31 PM
There's a lot of leverage in the rig described. If the horse were to reach down to scratch a fly on his leg, he could step through the sidereins and a somersault wreck could ensue. Having the horse on the longe could prevent that kind of wreck.

It's something my trainer watches very closely. They started off on the longe line and are moving off of it step by step.

FWIW, someone mentioned side reins attached to the curb. Never. They go inside and attach to the "snaffle" rein.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:47 PM
If it is used as an aide, though, should it really be used for so long and so often? If the horse is not going into the bit, have other reasons been looked into? Back? Teeth?

I think the biggest criticism I've seen of devices such as side reins, draw reins, etc., is that they are used too much and for too long. If that is the only way the horse will go into a frame (and a false frame at that), then proper training is being skipped. Seems like the horse should be encourage to first move forward and use his back.

Ghazzu
Sep. 6, 2009, 07:54 PM
LOL, his head is about 3 degrees behind the vertical in one picture, and either on or in front of it in every other. In the BTV picture, the side reins are loose, showing that she was taking up too much contact and needed to correct it. Doing the wrong thing is part of learning.

So she uses the side reins as an aid to maintaining proper contact by looking down and seeing slack in the side reins and therefore knowing she needs to loosen up?
Doesn't sound like a good plan from here.
Does sound like it will encourage her to look down and not ahead, as she indeed seems to be doing.

As for the combination of pelham and flash, all I can say is ewwwww.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 6, 2009, 08:25 PM
Horse goes well on the bit when offered soft contact and educated hands.

What kind of bit does he go in normally in his dressage training? I'm asking as we have tried different bits with our new horse this summer. He was not going into the bit, was rushing, inconsistent, etc. After the saddle fitter, chiropractor, equine dentist and putting him into a french link, he's a different horse. He hated the single jointed snaffle we were using. So much happier with the french link.

We'd like to try a KK ultra, but the darn things are so expensive! Which, by the way, does anyone know why they are priced so high? Perhaps I need to start my own thread asking that question.

Sithly
Sep. 6, 2009, 08:33 PM
because it allows a learning rider (leaning how to sit on a horse, have independent seat etc) to concentrate of learning to ride without having to worry about keeping the horse on the bit and round - which by the way allows the rider a place to sit, a swinging back, ease of aiding etc etc.

in other words: learning to ride is a lot easier on a horse that is together and going correctly. however, a learning rider does not have the skill to keep a horse together.

hence side reins.

nothing nefarious about it!

For a SRS rider, sure. For an ammie's first few rides on a big-moving WB, okay, maybe. But for a kid on a pony, to me it just indicates the pony is unsuitable/unsafe, and thus not an appropriate match.

IMO you should have an independent seat before you start worrying about whether or not the horse is on the bit. You aren't going to duplicate it without an independent seat anyway. It's like doing algebra before you learn addition and subtraction.

Then again, I'm not a dressage rider nor do I play one on TV. :D

Zevida
Sep. 6, 2009, 08:45 PM
IMO you should have an independent seat before you start worrying about whether or not the horse is on the bit.

Well that's the catch-22, isn't it. It is hard to develop an independent seat on a horse whose back is braced against you. So if you can get the horse traveling correctly on the bit, the back will begin to swing and be supple and that gives the rider a place to seat and begin to learn feel. Don't so many AAs languish at the lower levels because they can't get an independent seat because their horses' backs are tight and they can't loosen the back without an independent seat?

I don't know anything about the rider or pony in question. But, I thought it was very common in Germany for learning riders on schoolmasters to ride with side reins, even in competition. The reason to punish the mouth of the schoolmaster and it helps the rider learn the feel of what is correct. Eventually, they will graduate to no side reins.

Margaret
Sep. 6, 2009, 08:55 PM
I've never seen anyone ride in side-reins off the longeline. I was always told that's very dangerous. Longing in side-reins you see a lot. When with a rider, usually a beginner, there no reins for the rider to hold.

then you have never been to a horse show in Germany. They actually have classes for beginning riders which are specified as being for horses in side reins--they are the equivalent of our lead line/ walk/trot classes...some times mom is on a lead line at the head, other times the rider is doing a basic pattern.

EqTrainer
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:01 PM
When my working student was a little girl, she was told to ride a horse in side reins. She didn't know any better, so she did. Horse popped up, hit the side reins and flipped over.

She was fine.

Look.. my daughters pony's grazing reins give me the heebie jeebies. Leverage and children is not really a great idea. Most little kids learn to ride hunt seat first and I think this is one reason why.. less emphasis on control/getting them round and more emphasis on going forward and being safe. At least that's how it works here.

Be careful, please. Horses can feel trapped and do really gawdawful things faster than you can say OH SHIT.

Tilly
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:04 PM
When I was taking lessons with a very good German dressage instructor when I was 11, I rode a school horse in side-reins on the lunge. It was only after she felt I was quiet enough that the lunge line came off, and awhile after that the side-reins came off.
The horse was used to being ridden in side-reins and everything was fine. He went around nicely and never fussed.

ETA: I didn't get to use the reins [or my stirrups, if I remember correctly] for a long long time. They were knotted on the horse's neck and I was not allowed to touch them :lol:

cutemudhorse
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:04 PM
I always thought side reins were just for the longe line. Then years ago, my new instructor then turned me loose with them on in lessons. The basic reason was for me to push the horse into the properly adjusted side reins and not shorten his neck with my reins. I survived and still consider that instructor to have blessed me with lots of great tools for my riding. But I would hesitate to encourage it myself although I do see the value in it in a situation as what is was, and with her expertise. It's interesting reading about the Germans doing classes that way.

Sithly
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:07 PM
Well that's the catch-22, isn't it. It is hard to develop an independent seat on a horse whose back is braced against you. So if you can get the horse traveling correctly on the bit, the back will begin to swing and be supple and that gives the rider a place to seat and begin to learn feel. Don't so many AAs languish at the lower levels because they can't get an independent seat because their horses' backs are tight and they can't loosen the back without an independent seat?

Nah, you can learn an independent seat bareback on a fat QH plug. :lol: I've seen dozens of kids and teenagers who have it naturally, though they don't yet have the finesse to get a horse moving properly (nor do they care, usually! :lol: ).

It occurred to me that I might be using the term "independent seat" incorrectly. I take it to mean a rider who sits in balance and in rhythm with the horse, who can use leg and hand aids separately or in concert without falling out of balance.

The horse doesn't have to be moving correctly for the rider to learn this. IMO it's a prerequisite for further learning.

I'd like to hear different perspectives on this.

lewin
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:17 PM
I have done longe lessons in side reins. The idea is that the horse stays round giving the rider a good place to sit while they do exercises without reins to work on their seat. The instructor controls the pace of the horse. I have a few and they were quite helpful. I would do them more often as a refresher except my horse is a bad longe horse in that she does not maintain a steady tempo well on the longe.

hoopoe
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:20 PM
the only time I have ever been on a horse where there was side reins was during a lunge lesson

I have seen photos, posted elsewhere, of a child in Germany. She was shown in warm up and in test, riding in normal tack. At the prize giving the ponies and horses were wearing side reins. I noted that the side reins had slack when the horse was in normal ridden position. They were not being used to "set" the head / frame.

I assumed the side reins were being used as a safety device, like we might use a running martingale. I didn't think to ask about the side rein detail

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:33 PM
So she uses the side reins as an aid to maintaining proper contact by looking down and seeing slack in the side reins and therefore knowing she needs to loosen up?
Doesn't sound like a good plan from here.
Does sound like it will encourage her to look down and not ahead, as she indeed seems to be doing.

Nope, that would be something the trainer would be telling her. She doesn't watch the side reins. The trainer is watching her and giving her constant feedback, including telling her when her contact is too heavy.

I was saying that the fact that he was BTV is not what she's taught to do, but something that happens occasionally during a lesson. But most of the time it doesn't happen, as is indicated by the other photos.

Eqtrainer, as I mentioned, she took 2 years of h/j lessons before deciding she wanted to switch to dressage.

tempichange
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:52 PM
Sidereins are used for for multiple purposes.

In the case that is mentioned, it's to keep a horse's mouth from being punished from an uneducated/unstable seat and hands. I rode like this for two years on an old schoolmaster before I was allowed to get my reins back. This is usually done with an educated horse that readily accepts the contact, not a green horse learning and developing in contact.

HOWEVER, in this particular situation, it's dangerous because of the interference of the rider and the green-ness of the horse in question.

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 09:55 PM
HOWEVER, in this particular situation, it's dangerous because of the interference of the rider and the green-ness of the horse in question.

I disagree with your assessment, but you're entitled to your opinion :)

tempichange
Sep. 6, 2009, 10:28 PM
I disagree with your assessment, but you're entitled to your opinion :)

You're allowed to disagree, but answer this:

Is the horse consistent in the contact? In simpler terms- does the horse go down,round and soft in the contact/back for more than 20 or so minutes?

If yes, then, he should be in sidereins, without rider interference.

If no, then the pairing should be reassessed with a more mature rider teaching the horse about proper contact, and the student being on a more trained mount.

Dressage is not about a frame, nor should the tools that are allowed be used in such a way that promotes that idea. The rider, especially a young rider, should be taught that equipment, especially auxiliary equipment, is not an means to an end.

indyblue
Sep. 6, 2009, 10:46 PM
What Im finding hard to understand is how having a horse in a pelham with flash and sidereins teach someone "feel" ? Personally I think the only way to learn feel is in a snaffle.Ambrey your daughter looks like she has a good seat and Im sure your a good mum but I would never allow a trainer to put my horse in such a mish-mash of equipment let alone let an in-experienced child then ride in it.I feel you are buying into everything this trainer is telling you and glossing over the fact that the situation is less than ideal.Sorry:no:

Zevida
Sep. 6, 2009, 10:56 PM
Nah, you can learn an independent seat bareback on a fat QH plug. :lol: I've seen dozens of kids and teenagers who have it naturally, though they don't yet have the finesse to get a horse moving properly (nor do they care, usually! :lol: ).

Well there are many roads to Rome and I certainly don't think that riding in side reins is the only way to get an independent seat. But, I also don't think there is anything wrong with that technique either. The Germans schools are very well respected and they have had great success with their young riders. Unlike the US where the focus of most beginner riding is h/j, the Germans start their young students off in dressage. Learning to properly sit a dressage horse is much easier with the horse round and soft, so why not start them that way if you can?

Sithly
Sep. 6, 2009, 11:11 PM
Well there are many roads to Rome and I certainly don't think that riding in side reins is the only way to get an independent seat. But, I also don't think there is anything wrong with that technique either. The Germans schools are very well respected and they have had great success with their young riders. Unlike the US where the focus of most beginner riding is h/j, the Germans start their young students off in dressage. Learning to properly sit a dressage horse is much easier with the horse round and soft, so why not start them that way if you can?

Makes sense. I wouldn't have an objection to it being used that way.

candico
Sep. 6, 2009, 11:15 PM
In Europe children riding ponies in side reins is a very common way of starting their riding career. I don't think you can really fault their end result - lots of young riders with exceptional seats/hands. I think it depends on the horse/pony. Sometimes even with the best of trainers the horse takes advantage of the less experienced rider and decides its a good time to sight see hence the rider gets frustrated and gets too handsy and "off" their seat, etc. Allowing them a little help to feel the right result especially with supervision can often allow faster progress and a lot less wear tear and frustration on the horse's part. I've seen more horses get sour with their noses up in the air, wagging left and right, bodies crooked, not in front of the leg, etc. So let these riders have a few rides a week where they focus on their seat and the horse benefits from a steady contact via the side reins. That said, make sure they are adjusted correctly, not too tight nor where the riders legs could get caught in the loops and that someone is always there to watch to make sure the desired result is being met without the horse getting agitated nor frightened... JMHO

Ambrey
Sep. 6, 2009, 11:28 PM
Dressage is not about a frame, nor should the tools that are allowed be used in such a way that promotes that idea. The rider, especially a young rider, should be taught that equipment, especially auxiliary equipment, is not an means to an end.

We're getting way beyond the issue here, though. I don't disagree with you on this issue, only that she is being put in danger. This horse is not green to side reins, and goes extremely steadily in them.

But I completely agree that when she comes off of the side reins, she will have much to learn about contact and connection. As I said, the horse is not schooled in this way, so he does not go with a head set or in a false frame. When the seat work is done, she will have to learn how to give him the soft, giving contact and seat/leg that will maintain roundness. She's just not there yet.

twofatponies
Sep. 6, 2009, 11:49 PM
So this is something that can be used in the famous "green horse-green rider" situation?

I guess it is a "case by case" scenario, then. I have never seen a ridden lesson with side reins, so it did take me by surprise. Then again, my exposure to dressage training has been limited.

I had many lunge lessons as a kid and a few as an adult with the pony or horse in side reins. Because dressage folks that I know nearly always lunge in sidereins, and in those lessons I (or other riders) were not using the reins, just practicing sitting properly.

I think the main danger in riding off the lunge with them is that in a fall the rider could get a leg through them (or I suppose potentially a limber horse could get a leg through) and then they are caught by the mouth?

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:07 AM
When he is being schooled (by your trainer, I am guessing?), what bit are you using? Is he comfortable, moving forward into the bit, using his back, etc.? I guess my question is in regards to whether or not the long term use of side reins is for the training of your horse, it's not, correct? You're saying they're only on him when your daughter is riding him, I think.

MyReality
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:18 AM
How many times do we have to go through this again.

Like some already mentioned, you ride with side reins, only when you are on the lunge line and does not have the reins.

We never ride with side reins off the lunge line because either a. it is not safe to ride without reins off the lunge line. :-) b. if a rider needs reins and side reins to keep the horse round, she will only learn better without the side reins.

Side reins are never used to develop rider's uneducated hands. It is useless to control an uncontrollable horse. 2 purposes: it is used to develop seat of a rider, without hand, on a developed horse. Or it is used to develop acceptance of contact for the horse, without the rider, for a green horse. Those 2 purposes only.

Therefore based on both purposes, you never really ask the horse to wear anything else, other than a simple snaffle... because a developed horse can obviously go nicely in a simple snaffle, and you want to keep things the simplest and mildest for a young horse when he is just leaning about contact.

Moogles
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:29 AM
I know of a few instructors who refuse to teach anyone riding with side reins on as a safety liability. Actually when lunging my horse with them on one day she slipped and managed to get her forelimb over the inside side rein, and these had been properly adjusted and not too low! Freak accidents happen but they never broke and it took a lot of chiropractic work to realign her. As with anything equestrian accidents happen, but limiting risk is always a good idea. I will still longe with side reins, however with ones that are easier to break!

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:30 AM
The side reins are only while my daughter is in lessons, even during non-lesson riding/hacking she rides without them, either in a JP oval link snaffle or the mullen mouth pelham.

In lessons, he works her hard. And yet, she really enjoys them. Her seat has improved by leaps and bounds.

Yes, pony is schooled by my trainer. As you know, he's not Mr. Classical, but he has made steady progress in getting the equine llama to stretch and use his back. He's not only looking good, but clearly is feeling more supple, stronger, and balanced under saddle. The first time we had him on the longe line and he offered to stretch down and do a nice forward trot I almost cried (yes, I really am that sappy).

FancyFree
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:37 AM
How many times do we have to go through this again.

Like some already mentioned, you ride with side reins, only when you are on the lunge line and does not have the reins.

We never ride with side reins off the lunge line because either a. it is not safe to ride without reins off the lunge line. :-) b. if a rider needs reins and side reins to keep the horse round, she will only learn better without the side reins.

Side reins are never used to develop rider's uneducated hands. It is useless to control an uncontrollable horse. 2 purposes: it is used to develop seat of a rider, without hand, on a developed horse. Or it is used to develop acceptance of contact for the horse, without the rider, for a green horse. Those 2 purposes only.

Therefore based on both purposes, you never really ask the horse to wear anything else, other than a simple snaffle... because a developed horse can obviously go nicely in a simple snaffle, and you want to keep things the simplest and mildest for a young horse when he is just leaning about contact.

Is there already a thread about this? I must have missed it.

Anyway, excellent post. I agree with everything you wrote. Simple, simple, simple is best. :yes:

woodcat
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:45 AM
When men are most sure and arrogant they are commonly most mistaken, giving views to passion without that proper deliberation which alone can secure them from the grossest absurdities- David Hume:

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 07:04 AM
There are safety issues. The longeur can see something starting to happen, and stop the horse from putting his head down and getting tangled in the side reins. If the student could do that himself, the side reins probably wouldn't be there in the first place.

Based on what I've seen, I still think the recommendation to avoid riding in side reins off the longe is best.

1. What happens in Europe doesn't always apply here.

In Europe, there are often a dozen or more riding schools near big cities, each with 30-40 ponies and 30-40 horses, in my experience, all frequently inspected, licensed, and with specific rules pertaining to child safety, doing riding lessons to beginners about eight hours a day, seven days a week.

The children's lessons are set up in a very specific way. You will see little children riding in side reins in a small enclosed children's area, not a big riding arena with other riders going in and out of the arena, riding while the lesson goes on, etc, often with a dozen or two ponies nose to tail (or even more funny, perfectly spaced each a length apart). I've even seen one instructor longe 5 or 6 ponies at once, hold all the longe lines in one hand, all of them going around with a perfect amount of space between them, all on side reins with little kids plopping up and down in the saddle, learning their basics.

And on occasion, children ride off the longe, on the same perfectly trained little circus-like ponies.

These horses are highly trained, and worked in a group prior to having students on them, I'm told, and this is why they have such good control of them. The instructor can single out an individual pony, tell it to do something, slow down, speed up, and it does.

When the instructor says, 'turn', the ponies turn without the riders doing a damned thing. If he says 'halt', all the ponies halt. I had several instructors in france tell me they ALSO teach the ponies not to 'move the head' while the side reins are on, the ponies are punished for rubbing their head on their leg, reaching down, pawing, bucking, shying, etc. Because if a pony was to get its head or leg tangled in the side reins, the danger is that ALL the children in the lesson could get hurt. It helps that the lessons flow along with a very consistent format, and the ponies look like they're completely settled into that routine.

These ponies are selected and trained by licensed instructors who have gone through a very rigorous training program themselves. They are quiet, reliable, safe ponies who have been taught to work this way. Most of them are getting on in years and have been doing this sort of thing for a long time. If there are any problems, the instructor, assistant or advanced student tries first to correct it, if not they go to the intermediate and advanced lessons, and don't get used for this under any circumstances.

I have seen one riding school in America, ONE, where the instructor had even 10% of that kind of training, and that kind of control of their lesson horses.

Puffing out one's chest and attempting to compare what one is doing with this system is...it's irrelevant at best.

2. Riding in side reins off the longe here, is usually due to control and 'can't get the head down' issues. People don't want to teach the entire lesson where the horse is fighting the reins.

Here, generally people put side reins on horses and give lessons in them, to keep a horse under control that the student can't otherwise control, either because they don't have suitable school horses for that level of rider, or because it's their horse that is not controllable by the rider, basically, because the horse braces his neck and won't put his head down when the rider tweaks on the reins. The expectation is that the rider tweaks the left and then the right rein, and the horse puts his head down and in. If he doesn't, out comes, well, something - draw reins, side reins, something.

A dressage lesson with the horse's head up in the air, fighting the reins, running around, doesn't look like a 50 or 100 dollar dressage lesson. Students don't generally pay for lessons like that for very long.

From what I've seen, Ambrey's pony is very strong and gets very stiff and quick, pushing its neck out and bracing and getting very fast. No child could handle that, it doesn't even appear some adults can.

Ambrey started a lengthy thread at one point laughingly describing how the pony threw off a strong, capable teenager rider. I'm sure in her case, this pony has a flash, a pelham and side reins on because he simply needs them so that her child can ride him.

In this sort of situation, it is far, far more dangerous than with the highly trained european school horses type situation, and if there are side reins, the horse being on the longe gives a much higher chance of being able to bring the horse back under control when the inevitable happens.

3. Putting side reins on so the student 'can work on himself' on a horse that isn't bracing his back can be useful at times...but too easily becomes a long term habit.

When actually teaching dressage to adults, rather than just basics to beginners, occasionally, there is something to be said for putting side reins on a horse that isn't trained properly to be a school horse or isn't particularly suited for the purpose, so the rider can practice his sitting trot. Sometimes we have to do the best we can with what we have.

However, the trouble is that people wind up doing that for eons, and getting dependent on side reins, rather than learning how to use their aids and getting the horse to bend and accept the bit and later go on the bit with a connection. At that point, those side reins (or draw reins or whatever) have actually become a copout, and the rider is just avoiding learning.

egontoast
Sep. 7, 2009, 07:22 AM
previous thread

http://chronicleforums.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=204632&highlight=side+reins

Not even mentioned on this thread but poor slc had a terrible wreck riding a horse in side reins according to that thread



One of the worst wrecks I ever had was on a very quiet horse that tripped in front, and got a foot over the side reins. The horse completely flipped over and landed on top of me. That left a mark.

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 07:37 AM
Yup. That's one of the possible things that can happen. Sometimes even an instructor holding the longe won't prevent a problem, but it sure can, in general, increase safety.

AnotherRound
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:22 AM
Alright. This horse of Ambrey's' has been in 'training' with side reins for more than a year now. How long of that time has the child been in lessons with the side reins that she isn't developing and independent seat. Its geared up to the gills with a flash and pelham and side reins, so the horse is controllable by the kid. I don't know why the horse hasn't learned anything in a year that he still has to go in this get up, and why the child isn't lessoning on other horses so it can ride well enough not to snatch the horse's mouth, but something is wrong, and side reins as a control device would make me question, as a parent, both the trainer's effectiveness and the safety for the child.

As for slick, you says whatever pops into her head during a thread, apparently. Unless your vast experience has lead you to new conclusions since May:



Riding off the longe line with any appliance other than reins and saddle is relatively dangerous.

When the horse is on the longe line, if the horse gets tangled in the equipment, the longeur at least has a prayer in heck of stopping the horse and getting it untangled. S/he also can control the horse and prevent other problems much of the time.

Draw reins, especially those that go to the girth, side reins, and the like hang down, flop around, especially when in use by the tyro, and increase the potential for accidents. Draw reins and side reins are much less likely to break than reins, if they do get caught on something.

The more equipment you have on a horse the better the chances of an accident.

And the chances of problems are far more with horses and riders that aren't trained, trying to do things on their own that they aren't familiar with, without help of an instructor.

It doesn't matter if the horse is usually quiet and reliable. If a horse trips a little bit, just through being so quiet, even, he can go down in front and get tangled in the extra stuff. One of the worst wrecks I ever had was on a very quiet horse that tripped in front, and got a foot over the side reins. The horse completely flipped over and landed on top of me. That left a mark.

There is more, of course. It's really not good practice to ride in side reins or draw reins off the longe, because one needs to learn to ride without them.

Longeing serves a specific purpose. Riding off the longe serves a specific purpose.

Do yourself a favor. Get riding lessons, and get supervision from a trained instructor who will keep you safe. You need someone to help show you how in person, with you right there, and the horse right there, where you ride. Being safe in a given situation with a given horse, how to sit the trot, is not something you can learn from free advice on the internet.

It is relatively easy to sit to a very slow jog, one simply doesn't rise to the trot, and sits upright, rather than leaning forward with the upper body.

Sitting a normal trot is a process that includes training the horse so his back is possible to sit on, then correcting the rider's position and using a number of exercises, taylored to the rider, horse and situation, to strengthen the rider's muscles and to make some muscles more supple and some more like 'stabilizers'. Every person has different problems sitting the trot and every person needs a somewhat different program. Sitting the normal trot in dressage is a skill that usually takes a rider about two years to develop, with instruction.

Equipment is not a substitute for being on an appropriate horse and riding in a safe area and doing appropriate things....and side reins that keep the horse's nose in while one rides, are not a path to riding dressage. They serve a specific purpose, but it is not so one can ride around with the horse's nose in.

If the horse is going too fast, pulling, resisting the rider trying to use the reins - instruction, not more equipment is the answer.

narcisco
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:40 AM
This is sort of an aside, but very relevant to the child riding in the sidereins. When the child's leg is so short it barely reaches past the flap of the saddle, then there is no possible way for a child that small to ride correctly from leg to hand. The feel generated by the sidereins is a false feel of headset. I don't particularly care what they do in Europe.

In America, I think it is safer and more appropriate for the child to learn to ride in a hunt seat and leave the horse's head out of it. When the legs are long and strong enough, then the child can worry about the horse's balance. If the horse does need all of that bitting to be safe for the child, it may not be an appropriate child's horse.

Here is an example of a child around that age developing her balance and seat at Intro, with no worries about the horse's topline (winning her class, by the way). Notice the lack of length of the leg in the saddle, even riding in a child's jumping saddle to get more leg on the horse.

Child at Intro (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/maji.jpg)

Here is the same child, 1 year later, with longer, effective legs, winning her class at training level, same horse. She has a long enough leg to ride in a dressage saddle and to push the horse from back to front.

Child at Training Level (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/magitmr.jpg)

Just for grins, they jumped too, all in a snaffle.

Child Jumping (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/magijump2.jpg)"]

AnotherRound
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:44 AM
Here is the same child, 1 year later, with longer, effective legs, winning her class at training level, same horse. She has a long enough leg to ride in a dressage saddle and to push the horse from back to front.

Child at Training Level (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/magitmr.jpg)

Woops, second pic doesn't come out.

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:57 AM
narsisco, a lot of that is governed by the choice of putting a very small child on a oversized horse that is too big and strong for them with nothing more than a fat snaffle bit.

if little 7 yr old kids can do leg yields on little appropriately sized (small) ponies, and teach then turns on the forehand and do a training level test on ponies they trained themselves, they don't appear at all to have the problems the tiny kid on the big horse in your pictures have.

meupatdoes
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:00 AM
...
1. What happens in Europe doesn't always apply here.

In Europe, there are often a dozen or more riding schools near big cities, each with 30-40 ponies and 30-40 horses, in my experience, all frequently inspected, licensed, and with specific rules pertaining to child safety, doing riding lessons to beginners about eight hours a day, seven days a week.

The children's lessons are set up in a very specific way. You will see little children riding in side reins in a small enclosed children's area, not a big riding arena with other riders going in and out of the arena, riding while the lesson goes on, etc, often with a dozen or two ponies nose to tail (or even more funny, perfectly spaced each a length apart). I've even seen one instructor longe 5 or 6 ponies at once, hold all the longe lines in one hand, all of them going around with a perfect amount of space between them, all on side reins with little kids plopping up and down in the saddle, learning their basics.

And on occasion, children ride off the longe, on the same perfectly trained little circus-like ponies.

These horses are highly trained, and worked in a group prior to having students on them, I'm told, and this is why they have such good control of them. The instructor can single out an individual pony, tell it to do something, slow down, speed up, and it does.

When the instructor says, 'turn', the ponies turn without the riders doing a damned thing. If he says 'halt', all the ponies halt. I had several instructors in france tell me they ALSO teach the ponies not to 'move the head' while the side reins are on, the ponies are punished for rubbing their head on their leg, reaching down, pawing, bucking, shying, etc. Because if a pony was to get its head or leg tangled in the side reins, the danger is that ALL the children in the lesson could get hurt. It helps that the lessons flow along with a very consistent format, and the ponies look like they're completely settled into that routine.

These ponies are selected and trained by licensed instructors who have gone through a very rigorous training program themselves. They are quiet, reliable, safe ponies who have been taught to work this way. Most of them are getting on in years and have been doing this sort of thing for a long time. If there are any problems, the instructor, assistant or advanced student tries first to correct it, if not they go to the intermediate and advanced lessons, and don't get used for this under any circumstances.


As somebody who has actually taken regular lessons at more than one of these German establishments, rather than just guessing about what it might be like on the internet, I can say from personal experience that

1. everybody at this particular barn and some others I tried out had the side reins on until they demonstrated a certain level of skill. Yours truly had them on for the first lesson or two as well.

2. Amazingly enough, the lesson horses and ponies were not robots. Often 5 or 6 people would be using the arena, some upper level trainers schooling young horses, some amateurs working on things with their private horses, and then the lesson with 3-4 people in it.
People would indeed enter and exit the arena, shocking but true (where do you come up with this stuff?!).
The instructor did not have majik verbal control over individual horses by calling out its name and hollering "TURN!" or "WHOA!" or whaever (Das glaubst Du ja wohl selber nicht...).

And so on.
It is one thing to debate the merits of using side reins, but another to completely make stuff up. I really think a Reality Check and a "Have I REALLY Personally Experienced This Or Am I Just Telling A Hyptothetical Fable" moment would be helpful toward keeping conversations here at least marginally grounded in reality.

FlashGordon
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:03 AM
This is sort of an aside, but very relevant to the child riding in the sidereins. When the child's leg is so short it barely reaches past the flap of the saddle, then there is no possible way for a child that small to ride correctly from leg to hand. The feel generated by the sidereins is a false feel of headset. I don't particularly care what they do in Europe.

In America, I think it is safer and more appropriate for the child to learn to ride in a hunt seat and leave the horse's head out of it. When the legs are long and strong enough, then the child can worry about the horse's balance. If the horse does need all of that bitting to be safe for the child, it may not be an appropriate child's horse.

Here is an example of a child around that age developing her balance and seat at Intro, with no worries about the horse's topline (winning her class, by the way). Notice the lack of length of the leg in the saddle, even riding in a child's jumping saddle to get more leg on the horse.

Child at Intro (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/maji.jpg)

Here is the same child, 1 year later, with longer, effective legs, winning her class at training level, same horse. She has a long enough leg to ride in a dressage saddle and to push the horse from back to front.

Child at Training Level (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/magitmr.jpg)

Just for grins, they jumped too, all in a snaffle.

Child Jumping (http://www.kathyjohnsondressage.com/magijump2.jpg)"]


Nice pics and a cute little rider.

I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment that some things need to come later in the child's riding education, based both on the child's physical strength and ability to fully understand specific concepts.

suzyq
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:18 AM
Lived in Germany for 5 years, had the same experience as meupatdoes.

narcisco
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:25 AM
narsisco, a lot of that is governed by the choice of putting a very small child on a oversized horse that is too big and strong for them with nothing more than a fat snaffle bit.

That is EXACTLY where the horse's or pony's temperaments come into play. This is where I question the use of auxillary gadgets to keep a child safe. Big horses, little ponies. Either one may or may not be a good kid's horse. Size should not be the governing factor when chosing appropriate children's horses.


they don't appear at all to have the problems the tiny kid on the big horse in your pictures have.

Appearances may be deceptive. Perhaps what you think you are seeing is not what one should be looking at. She didn't have "problems." She had an outstanding show career in two rings (hunter and dressage), qualified for regional championships every year, had a lovely long term relationship with her inexpensive quarter horse, and moved on to a scopier horse as a teenager. It was a terrific relationship, rather than a series of nappy ponies. The horse was then leased to the next very small child, who followed the same path and started her show career the same way. These are the horses who make life-long riders. They are baby sitters, not baby killers.

The horse in the picture was definitely too big for the child but never, ever too strong. She was extremely appropriately mounted. I don't think anyone ever fell off of him, he never bolted or bucked, and there was a lot of costumed, barebacked, halter only child silliness that went on.

Smaller is not necessarily safer; in fact I have seen numerous severe spinal injuries from people falling off ponies. There isn't always time to get your legs underneath you to fall safely.

I'm a big pony fan. However, I am not a bigger bit, sidereins off the longe or gadget fan. My point is that the length of the child's legs may be a bigger issue than the frame of the (very cute) palomino pony in the sidereins. She looks to be a child with potential. I would love to see that developed safely.

narcisco
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:31 AM
The instructor did not have majik verbal control over individual horses by calling out its name and hollering "TURN!" or "WHOA!" or whaever (Das glaubst Du ja wohl selber nicht...).

What? There is no magic spell? We have a facility where we do equine assisted psychotherapy. We do a lot of herd observation and it's always important to keep the clients safe in the event of a stampede. Once we were interviewing an therapy intern. We asked, "what would you do if you were in the field with a client, and all the horses started running toward you?"

He said, "you would have to teach me the word to make them stop."

I am still looking for that magic word.

CatOnLap
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:33 AM
The Manual of the US Pony Club specifically warns against using side reins with a rider anywhere but on the longe.

The British Pony Club Manual of Horsemanship specifically states that side reins should not be used with a rider except on the longe.

The Manual of Equitation used by the SRS, as well as the "Complete Training of the Horse and Rider" , both written by Alois Podhajsky, specifically warn against using side reins with a rider except on the longe or in hand.

The German FN "Principles of Riding" does allow that side reins can be used off the longe for a rider "who is not yet confirmed in his seat and aides" but goes on to specify the following as safety measures:
- the reins should be attached at a point 10 cm or more above the point of the shoulder...to A SNAFFLE bit.
-should be used on the flat only, for SLOW HACKING (walk and trot only) and warns that on rough ground, slopes , over any sort of pole etc, they should be removed for safety reasons.
-they should be used under the direct gaze of an instructor
-they should be adjusted so that the head is only slightly bent at the poll and the nose is well in front of the vertical.
The FN, however, does not call such use "dressage training" but simply "basic training for the rider".

The fact that some instructors and schools ignore these guidelines entirely should not be taken as an endorsement.

My original objection to the post in the dressage pony thread was that the thread was about ponies, not 15.2 hand horses, even if they do have ho2ny moments. The child appeared over mounted, and the equipment used to make the horse safe for that child simply confirms that impression. The equipment used is not endorsed by most training systems, and did not appear properly adjusted or safe to me and many others. And whatever those pictures were supposed to be about, it was not dressage. Especially that first picture, where the poor horse, ears pinned back, raising its croup and balking, behind the verticle. What was that? The poster of those pictures has been on these boards a long time and if they choose to put up such examples, should also expect to have the flaws pointed out.

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:39 AM
I am not doing any guessing from seeing things on the internet, these are lessons I saw in both france and germany. And yes, compared to how many riding school horses act in the US, these ponies did look ALMOST...'magikal'. No, there is no magic word, but it is sad to say, there are very few riding schools with ponies as appropriate and as obedient as the ones I saw 'over there'. I was impressed, and I saw a difference on average. good riding schools over here with a selection of appropriate ponies are to be cherished and are unusual.

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:48 AM
I feel so left out. I was never longed, with or without side reins. I don't even own any because I was never taught how to use them properly.

Sparky
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:57 AM
Nice pics and a cute little rider.

I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment that some things need to come later in the child's riding education, based both on the child's physical strength and ability to fully understand specific concepts.

Couldn't agree more. A child's early 'small' years are a time for knocking around on a suitably sized, and hopefully, incredibly tolerant animal, with saddles and even bridles optional. I can only shake my head at the pictures of a child on a too-big horse, with pelham, flash, side reins,too large saddle, et al, being trained in something as physically and mentally demanding as dressage. Kids who are pushed hard at anything seem to be the first to give it up when they are old enough to realize, "Hey, I don't have to do this."

Reiter
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:59 AM
What? There is no magic spell? We have a facility where we do equine assisted psychotherapy. We do a lot of herd observation and it's always important to keep the clients safe in the event of a stampede. Once we were interviewing an therapy intern. We asked, "what would you do if you were in the field with a client, and all the horses started running toward you?"

He said, "you would have to teach me the word to make them stop."

I am still looking for that magic word.

ROFLMHO :lol: :lol: :lol: Let me know when you find out! :lol: :lol: :lol:

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 11:45 AM
This is sort of an aside, but very relevant to the child riding in the sidereins. When the child's leg is so short it barely reaches past the flap of the saddle, then there is no possible way for a child that small to ride correctly from leg to hand. The feel generated by the sidereins is a false feel of headset. I don't particularly care what they do in Europe.


Haha, not an issue with my leggy kid.

And yes, she's capable of keeping him from putting his head down- this is something he worked with her on before allowing her off the longe. The guy's been doing this for a while ;)

But no matter what, don't side reins give a false frame? There's no way to properly develop the feel of leg to hand in side reins. It's just like any other gadget (including the pelham)- eventually you still need to learn the skills you're avoiding.

Sometimes it's just easier to work on things in isolation and then try to put them all together.

chaltagor
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:31 PM
Nope, that would be something the trainer would be telling her. She doesn't watch the side reins. The trainer is watching her and giving her constant feedback, including telling her when her contact is too heavy.

So the side reins are for the trainer. Does he do this with all his students to tell when they have too much collection?

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:47 PM
So the side reins are for the trainer. Does he do this with all his students to tell when they have too much collection?

Going BTV has nothing to do with collection.

Kaeleer
Sep. 7, 2009, 12:54 PM
I'm confused. Why would a trainer need side reins to tell a student when contact is too heavy? Any competent trainer (and probably quite a few mediocre ones) can tell that simply by watching the way the horse moves and/or the rider hangs!

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:01 PM
I'm confused. Why would a trainer need side reins to tell a student when contact is too heavy? Any competent trainer (and probably quite a few mediocre ones) can tell that simply by watching the way the horse moves and/or the rider hangs!

LOL, he does not. I was simply using the photo to show that the side reins are not set so tight that they bring the horse btv, to respond to a post about him having his head on his chest. In the one photo that has him btv, the side reins are slack.

So someone said "your daughter watches the side reins?" And I said no, the TRAINER is watching HER. I never said the trainer watches the side reins! That was just creative interpretation.

Tilly
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:03 PM
So someone said "your daughter watches the side reins?" And I said no, the TRAINER is watching HER. I never said the trainer watches the side reins! That was just creative interpretation.

:lol: Just got a fantastic mental image of the trainer staring intently at the side reins, ready to say something the second they go slack :lol: :lol: :lol:

ThreeFigs
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:06 PM
Sometimes it's just easier to work on things in isolation and then try to put them all together.


Yes, and that's why longeing is done with the horse in sidereins, and the rider stirrupless and reinless till an independent seat and adequate strength is formed. When I was a kid, I rode on the longe this way till I "earned" my stirrups and reins. In less than ten lessons, taught by a man who attended the SRS. Using appropriate horses. Makes life and learning so much more pleasant!

Wish I'd been more intellectually mature back then. A missed opportunity.

I have seen clinicians (from Germany) conduct lessons with horses in sidereins, ridden off the lunge. Have me the heebie-jeebies watching it. Most of the time I agree with the German method for developing riders, but I can't reconcile myself to off the lunge in side reins.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:07 PM
:lol: Just got a fantastic mental image of the trainer staring intently at the side reins, ready to say something the second they go slack :lol: :lol: :lol:

And the second they do- "TOO MUCH COLLECTION!"

:winkgrin:

Moderator 1
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:17 PM
We merged the posts from the dressage pony thread over here to keep that thread from getting sidetracked and provide some background for this one.

Please continue to keep the discussion productive.

Thanks!
Mod 1

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:27 PM
Going BTV has nothing to do with collection.

I don't know. Our horse was avoiding contact/going into the bit by going behind the vertical and sucking back.

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:38 PM
contact and collection aren't synonymous. collection can't happen without contact, but contact can happen without collection.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:40 PM
More clarification here, since people are adding information that they made up in their heads and is not true.

Horse has been in training with my trainer for about 9 months. He does not ride in side reins. His gadget of choice is the pelham, that's it.

As for why he doesn't go forward into the bridle easily, when we got him he'd only barely accept contact and was intolerant of having any leg put on at all. Teeth have been done annually and were never terrible. He's learning to accept contact and is becoming a very fun horse to ride. I have tried at least 15 bits. He is happiest in either the mullen or a fat double jointed snaffle, but still puts his tongue over. I tried the KK, he actually preferred the JP. Also tried the myler, he didn't like that one at all.

Ummmm, what else. Horse is sensitive and can be nervous. Daughter is very calm, has ridden all of his antics with no problem (he has never bolted, gone up, bucked, etc). She's never come off of him. She is also not 6, despite her size, she's 12.

Before she started riding him regularly she was confidently w/t/c on school horses and doing ground poles, but never wanted to jump.

Pony is quirky and funny and has tricks to get out of things, like most horse/ponies who have been ridden mainly by children do. He's also kind and has been great with my daughter.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:43 PM
Is sucking back collection either? I thought collection was, by definition, based on impulsion.

He comes behind the bit, but doesn't generally suck back- he's very forward.

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 01:48 PM
sucking back can happen at any point, during or not during collected gaits.

People seem to think collection is a general quality, like suppleness, that one desires to have present at all times. It isn't, it's a form of a gait with a different shape to the stride. Collected walk, collected trot, collected canter. It can't happen correctly without a connection and a contact.

Ghazzu
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:22 PM
Going BTV has nothing to do with collection.

So the kid has heavy hands, then ? Maybe a reason to lose the pelham...

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:31 PM
So the kid has heavy hands, then ? Maybe a reason to lose the pelham...

No, I would say she has light hands. She is learning to feel and respond to horse to maintain steady contact.

She is still learning. Sometimes takes up too much, sometimes not enough.

Here is a pic of her on a hack a couple of months ago, exploring the dressage arena.

http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/20090510-Rebecca_dvavi_0007.jpg

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:36 PM
More clarification here, since people are adding information that they made up in their heads and is not true.

Horse has been in training with my trainer for about 9 months. He does not ride in side reins. His gadget of choice is the pelham, that's it.

As for why he doesn't go forward into the bridle easily, when we got him he'd only barely accept contact and was intolerant of having any leg put on at all. Teeth have been done annually and were never terrible. He's learning to accept contact and is becoming a very fun horse to ride. I have tried at least 15 bits. He is happiest in either the mullen or a fat double jointed snaffle, but still puts his tongue over. I tried the KK, he actually preferred the JP. Also tried the myler, he didn't like that one at all.

Ummmm, what else. Horse is sensitive and can be nervous. Daughter is very calm, has ridden all of his antics with no problem (he has never bolted, gone up, bucked, etc). She's never come off of him. She is also not 6, despite her size, she's 12.

Before she started riding him regularly she was confidently w/t/c on school horses and doing ground poles, but never wanted to jump.

Pony is quirky and funny and has tricks to get out of things, like most horse/ponies who have been ridden mainly by children do. He's also kind and has been great with my daughter.

I'm totally confused. First he was a "hony" (a term I hate, by the way. There is NO SUCH THING as a "hony"), then he was a horse, and now he is a pony. Make up your mind.

Back on topic: This post by CatOnLap was the "light bulb" moment for me in this thread (bolding mine):


The Manual of the US Pony Club specifically warns against using side reins with a rider anywhere but on the longe.

The British Pony Club Manual of Horsemanship specifically states that side reins should not be used with a rider except on the longe.

The Manual of Equitation used by the SRS, as well as the "Complete Training of the Horse and Rider" , both written by Alois Podhajsky, specifically warn against using side reins with a rider except on the longe or in hand.

The German FN "Principles of Riding" does allow that side reins can be used off the longe for a rider "who is not yet confirmed in his seat and aides" but goes on to specify the following as safety measures:
- the reins should be attached at a point 10 cm or more above the point of the shoulder...to A SNAFFLE bit.
-should be used on the flat only, for SLOW HACKING (walk and trot only) and warns that on rough ground, slopes , over any sort of pole etc, they should be removed for safety reasons.
-they should be used under the direct gaze of an instructor
-they should be adjusted so that the head is only slightly bent at the poll and the nose is well in front of the vertical.
The FN, however, does not call such use "dressage training" but simply "basic training for the rider".

The fact that some instructors and schools ignore these guidelines entirely should not be taken as an endorsement.

In other words, just because it might give perceived good results in ONE situation, well, that doesn't make it "correct". I'll stick with the wisdom behind the manuals, thank you very much.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:41 PM
Is sucking back collection either?

No, I wasn't saying that. Sorry for confusion. I was just saying that when we first got our new horse, he was going behind the vertical and sucking back, no collection, obviously. We experimented with bits and had the chiro and equine dentist out and he's a different horse now.

15 bits?! Guess we're lucky in that case, although I'd still love to find a kk to try on him. Darn things are expensive.

chaltagor
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:46 PM
But no matter what, don't side reins give a false frame? There's no way to properly develop the feel of leg to hand in side reins.

I thought many posts said the side reins will help a rider feel what a horse in a round frame goes like. Now you say it's false?

FancyFree
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:54 PM
although I'd still love to find a kk to try on him.

OT:

Beg, borrow or steal one. Luckily my mare fits in to her mother's old bits. I switched her to her mother's KK snaffle and it made a world of difference. Really, night and day.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:56 PM
No, I wasn't saying that. Sorry for confusion. I was just saying that when we first got our new horse, he was going behind the vertical and sucking back, no collection, obviously. We experimented with bits and had the chiro and equine dentist out and he's a different horse now.

15 bits?! Guess we're lucky in that case, although I'd still love to find a kk to try on him. Darn things are expensive.

He actually usually doesn't come behind the vertical, but he will if the conditions are right- as should any horse given that particular rider error ;) You see he did not drop contact. This one tends to evade contact by coming above the bit more often.

Coming BTV and dropping the contact is something he's much more likely to do when he's trying to increase his speed or tempo against the wishes of your hand and seat. In that way, he does kind of use collection as an evasion, I guess. That wasn't happening in that photo, though.

As for whether he's a horse, a hony, or a pony. He is a 15hh 1/2 welsh who I call pony or the pony. He would need hard core elevator shoes to get to 15.1 or whatever you guys have visually measured him at- the 15hh is with long feet. That should clear up any confusion you might have. His dam was a 12hh section A.

As a half welsh who has many welsh characteristics and a very welsh-like temperament, I thought I'd mention him when people were talking about Welsh ponies and horses.

p.s. Just because you believe the word hony should not exist, doesn't make it so.

Pony Fixer
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:56 PM
I'm struggling with how side reins "teach" proper contact and keep a horse round so you can learn to sit, etc.

Side reins with no impulsion (ie, not adequate leg aid) will put the head "where it belongs" but not the hind leg. How this teaches contact or roundness/throughness is beyond me. Side reins on the lunge (with whip) can make this happen. Side reins on a rider free in the ring? How on earth do you know if the person is using enough push aids to balance them?

I don't really care about the specific example of Ambrey and her get, but the entire concept seems hokey to me as far as correct training of either horse or rider. I can see it used as a safety issue for a child with a head tossing horse, for example, but then I would think the child should be on a lunge line anyway. The whole thing just confuses me.

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 7, 2009, 02:58 PM
FWIW, someone mentioned side reins attached to the curb. Never. They go inside and attach to the "snaffle" rein

The side reins are attached to the reins? Explain the mechanics behind that, please?

Ghazzu
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:00 PM
No, I would say she has light hands. She is learning to feel and respond to horse to maintain steady contact.

She is still learning. Sometimes takes up too much, sometimes not enough.

Here is a pic of her on a hack a couple of months ago, exploring the dressage arena.

http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/20090510-Rebecca_dvavi_0007.jpg

Well, aside from the odd concept that riding in a dressage arena is going for a hack, I'd say that photo is some evidence that the kid can ride in a snaffle sans sidereins, and, voila! the horse isn't behind the vertical! nor does it appear to be out of control...

Ghazzu
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:02 PM
I don't really care about the specific example of ... and her get,

Get of sire, produce of dam.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:03 PM
I thought many posts said the side reins will help a rider feel what a horse in a round frame goes like. Now you say it's false?

It's false because although it's there, you're not creating it. You can feel what a horse is going like when round and steady, but you can't feel how to create that on your own.

Actually, false frame is probably a misnomer because it implies that the horse's head is down but the body is not through. Using side reins, you can learn to push the horse's body forward and create true roundness, but you wouldn't learn to recycle that energy through the reins. The side reins are doing half or more of your work for you.

Pony Fixer
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:04 PM
Apologies, of course! My brain is still recovering from the show last weekend...

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:05 PM
The side reins are attached to the reins? Explain the mechanics behind that, please?

Sorry, just following the other person's word usage. They attach to the top ring on the pelham.

Pony Fixer
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:05 PM
It's false because although it's there, you're not creating it. You can feel what a horse is going like when round and steady, but you can't feel how to create that on your own.



This is what I mean. Round is not created from the front end (ie, sidereins). Round is created from the back end.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:09 PM
Well, aside from the odd concept that riding in a dressage arena is going for a hack, I'd say that photo is some evidence that the kid can ride in a snaffle sans sidereins, and, voila! the horse isn't behind the vertical! nor does it appear to be out of control...

She does ride in a snaffle without side reins. Very often :) I don't think I ever said the pony was out of control or that he was unsafe without, that was something said by other people.

And the dressage arena was but one stop on the hack ;) Maybe "meander" is a better word.

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:18 PM
People can 'go for a hack' anywhere. It's how the horse is ridden rather than exactly where. Most people think of going for a hack in a field or on a trail.

For me, the child looks very ill matched to the pony. The pony looks much bigger and stronger than the child. Her leg may not be short, but she's extremely slight and small, and the pony has a big thick under neck and generally a strong neck. He doesn't look like he gives much to her hand at all. That's probably why the side reins, pelham and flash are used. They would give the child more ability to get the pony to listen to her.

Round is not created by riding back to front unless there is something to meet that energy that is created, in front. A barrier. That is supposed to be what side reins do, they create something for the horse to face, so he is accepting the bit and developing a connection and putting some energy to the bit so a connection is possible.

Side reins can be used that way, or they can be used incorrectly, ie, to hold the horse's head down and in in an extreme position that is out of step with what he should be doing in his training.

The irony of the entire thing is that horses usually accept the barrier created by the side reins, which is less varying, less inconsistent, and far more 'fixed', far better than they accept the barrier made by the rider with the reins...which is why the side reins are put on in the first place. Because the horse isn't accepting the bit and responding to it, when the rider holds the reins.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:21 PM
This is what I mean. Round is not created from the front end (ie, sidereins). Round is created from the back end.

And you can learn to use your seat and leg using side reins.

Listen, pony will happily go in an unsteady rhythm, with a dropped back, unbalanced. She is learning how to control these things with seat and leg, get him moving forward into the rein.

Ummm, here's an older picture. On the longe line, but see how dropped he is? Head down, but total false frame, choppy trot. This is what she's learning, how to feel when he is going nicely.

http://i185.photobucket.com/albums/x182/estarianne/Rebecca/93cc4f0f-1.jpg

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:27 PM
Looks better than any other time I've seen him. Stepping up awful nice for a horse in a 'false frame'. Giving or coming 1/4" behind the vertical doesn't necessarily mean a 'false frame'.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:37 PM
Eh, he's not butt high, he's built very uphill. If he looks butt high in a photo, it's not a good sign ;)

ThreeFigs
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:53 PM
I missed that -- who said he's butt high?

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:54 PM
It's far more important that the kid can control the animal and get it to do something she tells it to do, than whether it's butt is too high or not. When she takes the rein, he gives is more important than how collected and classical he is. First safety and control, then obedience, then controlling the speed, then doing figures accurately, coming back and going forward when she says....you don't have to worry about where the pony's fanny is for a little while yet.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 03:55 PM
I missed that -- who said he's butt high?

Nobody. SLC said she liked the way he was going in the latest picture, and I was pointing out that he's butt high and dropped in the back in that photo.

Or maybe I misunderstood.

eta: The pic I just posted was while she was learning all of those things SLC mentions and not worrying about moving him forward and using her seat properly. The pics from the other thread are more recent and she is now learning to tell when he is moving nicely and getting him in a forward, steady rhythm. It is very fun to watch the progression :)

spotted mustang
Sep. 7, 2009, 04:13 PM
then you have never been to a horse show in Germany. They actually have classes for beginning riders which are specified as being for horses in side reins--they are the equivalent of our lead line/ walk/trot classes...some times mom is on a lead line at the head, other times the rider is doing a basic pattern.

this is true - when I was a kid and took my first riding lessons over there, I was started on the lunge line for a few weeks and then graduated to riding the lunge pony free in lessons, still with the side reins on.

I think for ponies who are accustomed to go that way and who have a quiet temperament, it may be okay? In that barn, kids always rode their ponies in side reins, and there never was a side-rein related inciden. Saw lots of kids riding in side reins in "Jugendreiterpruefungen" at shows (young rider tests - walk/trot for beginners).

Still, most horses/ponies Ive ridden here in US weren't accustomed to side reins because they are usually not lunged in them either and I would never want to ride such a horse in side reins. Some other trainers in Germany I've known didn't like the practise very much either...

spotted mustang
Sep. 7, 2009, 04:30 PM
No, I would say she has light hands. She is learning to feel and respond to horse to maintain steady contact.

I guess my concern would be that as long as the pony is so heavily rigged and bracing into the side reins, your daughter doesn't really have an honest chance to feel his mouth.

I do remember one thing very clearly from my riding-with-side-rein beginnings in Germany (I was 15 when I started): that I held the reins and had NO idea what I was supposed to feel, because the pony just braced herself into the side reins. Only when I leased another pony and rode it on my own after lessons without side reins did I begin to feel the horse's mouth and to understand how my hands influenced the horse. In other words, side reins may have been useful for learning how to sit, but they got in the way when I learned how to use my hands and how to feel the horse's mouth.

ThreeFigs
Sep. 7, 2009, 04:33 PM
Pretty hard to tell from a single still frame at a different phase of the trot stride. Do you have any photos of the pair at a similar trot stride phase? After nine months, I'd expect the child to be completely capable of riding the horse off the lunge and without side reins, and never mind whether or not the horse is 100% "correct". As SLC said, that comes later.

Was this the horse that was trained to Second Level when you bought him, or was that another horse? I could be misremembering...

mbm
Sep. 7, 2009, 04:54 PM
ambrey i give you credit - you are very patient, very gentle. me? i would of lost it a looong time ago! :)

indyblue
Sep. 7, 2009, 05:21 PM
I agree mbm.Good on you Ambrey for keeping this a discussion and not a trainwreck.

spaghetti legs
Sep. 7, 2009, 05:38 PM
Dressage is not about a frame, nor should the tools that are allowed be used in such a way that promotes that idea. The rider, especially a young rider, should be taught that equipment, especially auxiliary equipment, is not an means to an end.
I think this bears repeating.



I'd say that photo is some evidence that the kid can ride in a snaffle sans sidereins, and, voila! the horse isn't behind the vertical! nor does it appear to be out of control...

at 12 I was riding "on the bit" doing simple canter changes, yielding, shoulder in etc etc but it was just learning to ride. We were not like "oooh we're doing DRESSAGE NOW" we were just learning to ride.

I don't think anyone here is trying to train wreck this topic.. but I do think that people feel maybe the girl is being pushed by her mother's own ambitions, rather than her own.. Does she ever get to just have fun and downtime on this horse? is there always someone in her ear telling her what to do? I know we only sort of see her in lesson pictures.. but if she can ride him without the gear, why can't she in lessons too? and if it's because she can't canter him etc than maybe he's not the right horse for her. Not saying she needs some dead head, but if you did some looking around i'm sure you could find something a bit more refined with a better mouth.

Zevida
Sep. 7, 2009, 05:52 PM
This is what I mean. Round is not created from the front end (ie, sidereins). Round is created from the back end.

That is true that round does not begin with the front, it begins in the back, but without the front to capture the energy created by the back end, the energy flows out the front of the horse, causing hollowness and a lack of connection. The purpose of the side reins is not to create roundness from the front, it is to take the energy that the rider creates and gives it a place to flow so that the circle of energy from the hind, through the back, to the connection and back to the hind, is able to be complete, with the rider only having to worry about the easiest part of that, forward.

narcisco
Sep. 7, 2009, 05:57 PM
Yes, Ambrey is showing great patience and style.


I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment that some things need to come later in the child's riding education, based both on the child's physical strength and ability to fully understand specific concepts.

We don't talk about the ability to understand specific concepts very much. And coupling it with physical ability makes good fodder for thought.

I'm sure we've all met the most intelligent of adults who can talk through the whole concept of putting the horse on the aids, on the bit, in connection, in collection. They KNOW the concepts. Even though they are big and strong enough, they may never have the physical ability: timing, tact and independence of body parts to do more than hack around.

Then we have kids (and adults) who can ride the socks off of anything but never explain why they are doing it. They can do amazing things without really understanding them. The mental side should be addressed too in the development of riders. Are the kids being well versed in theory? In this case, does this child understand the use of the pelham, the sidereins, the flash? Can she explain why each piece of equipment is used?

slc2
Sep. 7, 2009, 05:58 PM
It's been a very challenge based discussion but has gone pretty well and people have voiced very different ideas pretty successfully.

spaghetti legs
Sep. 7, 2009, 05:59 PM
thanks for your seal of approval!

ThreeFigs
Sep. 7, 2009, 06:14 PM
Well put, Narcisco!

goeslikestink
Sep. 7, 2009, 06:31 PM
Haha, not an issue with my leggy kid.

And yes, she's capable of keeping him from putting his head down- this is something he worked with her on before allowing her off the longe. The guy's been doing this for a while ;)

But no matter what, don't side reins give a false frame? There's no way to properly develop the feel of leg to hand in side reins. It's just like any other gadget (including the pelham)- eventually you still need to learn the skills you're avoiding.

Sometimes it's just easier to work on things in isolation and then try to put them all together.


ambrey------ no shes not if she were then she wouldnt need to strap the horses head down into position your kid is way over horsed
by size of the horse and because the horse is a 2nd horse and not for a novice
you should not HAVE TO PUT SIDE REINS DOUBLE BRIDLE AND ETC FOR A CHILDS PONY OR HORSE

I WILL SAY THIS AGAIN YOUR CHILD IS SERIOUSLY OVER HORSED AND ONE DAY SHE WILL HIT THE DIRT AND WONT GET UP AND YOU AS A PARENT ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR HER

Pony Fixer
Sep. 7, 2009, 06:36 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pony Fixer
This is what I mean. Round is not created from the front end (ie, sidereins). Round is created from the back end.


That is true that round does not begin with the front, it begins in the back, but without the front to capture the energy created by the back end, the energy flows out the front of the horse, causing hollowness and a lack of connection. The purpose of the side reins is not to create roundness from the front, it is to take the energy that the rider creates and gives it a place to flow so that the circle of energy from the hind, through the back, to the connection and back to the hind, is able to be complete, with the rider only having to worry about the easiest part of that, forward.

Of course--my point being that a small child with (probably) little ability to make the hind leg move up into contact will not be feeling a "round" horse. Side reins without a back to front (proper) type of ride will be getting nothing but a horse with a head set. With a lunge situation, the whip acts as the aid to drive the hind leg.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 06:37 PM
LOL, I tried to encourage her to take up jumping.

I never thought she'd enjoy dressage. She had her choice of western, dressage, or h/j for lessons and chose dressage. Pony can jump as well.

I think there are two currents here, one that my daughter isn't going fast enough (she "should" be riding on the bit") and the other that she's going too fast (being "pushed"). Either one could be true. But she's not as fearless or confident as many kids, and is not likely to push the envelope on her own, and so she progresses slower than kids who are willing to try new things on their own.

So she goes at the rate that is right for her.

As for the pony- he knows things, but is not an easy ride dressage-wise. She's stepping up to the plate and giving it a try anyway. I'm proud of her :)

goeslikestink
Sep. 7, 2009, 06:58 PM
Ambrey's daughter's (my granddaughter) hony is training under an extremely competent trainer and all the tack is as he requests.

mrs woodcat no hes not -- as he putting all the equipment of for only one reason only
as the horse tanks and pulls with whome ever on his his back as he hasnt be tuaght properly from butt to poll to a relaxed yaw
your trainer also rides him in a pelham as ambrey has often posted pics here then forgets what shes posted

the grand daughter has the same problem as her mother with her horse

thats lack of knowledge on your trianers side

there is no such thing as a hony its either a horse or a pony
horses start from 14.2hhs upwards ponies start from 34 inches which is roughly about 10hhs up to 14.2hh

The hony fights keeping in frame,
as i said it not being trained correctly


so with the side reins she can develop softer hands.
wrong i will explain in a mo


The hony tends to get the bit under his tongue,

then the trianer should check or tell and show you how to check and alter your bridle to the correct lenght -- if this is not the case then the horse might need a dentist
horses tend to put there tongue over the bit as its a common error of tacking up when the bit is to low in the horses mouth




thus the flash. She longes this way, and, part of the time, rides this way, under the trainer's supervision.

as shes a minor she should be undersupervision at all times with a horse that to much for her



The hony has a mind of his own, although he seems to like his "job" better these days, and we hope the need for side reins will go away.


listen to your own words------- THE HORSE HAS A MIND OF ITS OWN
THATS AN UNEDUCATED HORSE-


He's very forward... and needs the Pelham to keep his attention while on his job.

not nessacarily with the right rider and the correct format then horse wouldnt tank nor pull
if in the hands of someone that knew what they were doing



side reins-- should be 2-5m shorter than the lenght which would allow the horse to carry his head in a normal standing or trotting position without the reins
they should be the same length without the common error or habit of shortening the inside in attempt too encourage a bend

inside rein shortening - as you can clearly see by your pictures causes the horse to swing his quarters out --

be it ridden in side reins or lunging you should work the horse between inside leg and outside hand -- this is not apparant in the the photos

the side reins can not subtitute for the riders hands --------------

for a horse to have a mouth ----- you should be able to feel in your hands the energy that you have created with your legs and should be able to push the horse between leg and hand too create implusion the horse is then pushed into the bridle with mouth accepting the bit

but here ---- in these photos the horse is not relaxed nor is the rider as the horse is far to strong for her a shes only a half pint of a child and should be under supervision at all times with this horse

really truthfully you should change it to one that more suitable to her riding skills

side reins are a tool - in ones tool box used incorrectly they become dangerous

egontoast
Sep. 7, 2009, 07:00 PM
I thought this thread was a general discussion thread about riding in sidereins. How did it get to be yet another thread all about Ambrey? She is even the OP now although she did not even start this thread.

What The...Fluff

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 7, 2009, 07:02 PM
I remember the day I first felt "round." I was 22 and had been riding for 10 years, the majority of those years was on the horse under me at the time.

Slight back story--found Will at the western rental-trail ride stable I was working at when I was 13. He was broke to saddle but barely had brakes, no leads, couldn't take a bit, couldn't pick up feet & none of the other kid-guides would ride him. No customers could. I taught him all that semi-supervised & in western tack. His owner blackmailed my parents into buying him a month before the county fair. A few months later, my parents moved him to a closer barn with an English trainer.

She put Will in a jointed pelham, slapped a dropped noseband on (to keep his tongue in his mouth) and I was able to get a frame out of him, but never round. We did qualify for the State 4-H show twice, but through Equitation & Showmanship, never Pleasure because he had trouble with his right lead.

Shortly after I sold Will in college, I went back for a visit and was riding him down their long driveway. I was wiggling the bit (a snaffle), as I'd been taught (realizing now it's not "correct" to fuss with the bit) and BOOM there it was. The totally electric feel of a round back. We only had if for a second but I've never forgotten that feeling.

These days, Bailey spoils me. He gives me that same electric feeling bareback after a good 2 years out of work :yes:

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 7, 2009, 07:09 PM
I'm totally confused. First he was a "h*ny" (a term I hate, by the way. There is NO SUCH THING as a "h*ny"), then he was a horse, and now he is a pony. Make up your mind.

Hitch is right. It does not mean what you think it means!! It really and truly is a dirty, 4-letter word not fit for the eyes and ears of minors.

Sing "Mony Mony" but with an h. Get it now???!!!

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 08:13 PM
A lot of words have more than one meaning, one of which is obscene ;)

Moderator 1
Sep. 7, 2009, 08:47 PM
To clear up some confusion: hitchinmygetalong started this thread with what is now post #8. She linked to this thread from another one and requested that folks direct a side discussion developing there on sidereins to this thread. To help facilitate it, we moved the pertinant posts (before and after hitch's post in that thread) over here so that all of the posts on this topic were in one thread.

Because Ambrey's post of her daughter's picture initiated the siderein discussion on the other thread, it came first chronologically, and therefore by default became the OP of this thread. We'll head back to the beginning and copy hitch's post into the OP to avoid further confusion.

You're all obviously welcome to discuss the use of sidereins in general as opposed to specifically related to Ambrey's daughter's situation.

Thanks,
Mod 1

AnotherRound
Sep. 7, 2009, 08:48 PM
Was this the horse trained at Second Level when you bought him, or was that another horse? I could be misremembering...

No, you remember corrrectly, that's what she claimed when the horse was bought. Somehow I can't feature a horse at that level with what she now claims were his inherent problems when they bought him:


As for why he doesn't go forward into the bridle easily, when we got him he'd only barely accept contact and was intolerant of having any leg put on at all.
Truth, as are the definition of various words and phrases she misuses, is relative with Ambrey.

I also have startle response when you think about how "barely accepts contact and is intolerant of having any leg put on at all" adds up to a good horse for children and raw beginners. The horse has taken on various properties depending on the challenges she gets to her horse management online.

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:19 PM
Ambrey, I'm sorry I had to embarrass you and your mother by revealing of the actual meaning of that word. As a fellow mother, I know you would never accept someone using the word "pu*sy" in front of your daughter even though one meaning is completely innocent, so I felt you needed to know before you accidentally used 'h*ny" in an inappropriate place, such as a clinic with young children present. The last thing you need is to have your parental authority questioned by your daughter's friends snickering behind your back about how "stupid" you were for not knowing what the word really means.

Ambrey
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:43 PM
I was trying to keep my responses to the OP, not discuss our travails with the pony unless it was relevant.

There's plenty of backstory I haven't shared in between "look at our great new pony!" and "look at my daughter in dressage lessons!" It has not always been easy.

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 7, 2009, 09:53 PM
side reins-- should be 2-5m shorter than the lenght which would allow the horse to carry his head in a normal standing or trotting position without the reins they should be the same length without the common error or habit of shortening the inside in attempt too encourage a bend

for a horse to have a mouth ----- you should be able to feel in your hands the energy that you have created with your legs and should be able to push the horse between leg and hand too create implusion the horse is then pushed into the bridle with mouth accepting the bit

GLS, I have a newbie-to-side-rein question.

Bailey has a naturally higher head carriage (Arab/Morgan). IF I were to put side reins on that type of horse, how would I adjust them? For his natural head carriage, or for where I want his head to be??

Fear not, this is only a theoretical question. I have NO intention of using side reins on him, but I may have need of this knowledge in the future.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 7, 2009, 10:00 PM
Back to what was the original topic, side reins. How many here have seen side reins used improperly, for example for too long (time wise)? What constitutes over use? If a horse is being "trained" in side reins, is 4,5, or even 12 months too long? It seems if a trainer is consistently relying on such devices instead of proper training, then something is wrong.

spaghetti legs
Sep. 7, 2009, 11:23 PM
I have to agree Carolina..

also in individual settings, the horse shouldn't go in side reins for longer than 10 - 15 minutes each side. it is hard work but that's my thoughts for lunge work too. It's hard work for the horse.

mbm
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:01 AM
good lord. there is *nothing wrong* with using sidereins! they are perfectly classical and or modern depending on your bent.

lunging a horse in sidereins is one of the tried and true methods of teaching the horse to seek the bit, use its back etc. also lunging a horse in side reins is also a great way to build back muscle on a horse that is new to the work, has had time off, or incorrectly ridden etc.

lunging a horse in sidereins is also a great way to *see* how your horse is going, etc., it is also a great way to warm up a tight backed horse... i could go on and on.....

also, with some horses, lunging in sidereins (after they have built muscle) with a rider on top will help the horse learn how to carry a rider.

lunging a horse in side reins with a rider on top is also a great way to teach the rider what it feels like for a horse to work correctly over its back.

as for correct adjustment: they should be placed at about the height of the riders knee, and the length is totally dependent on where the horse is in its training.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:49 AM
good lord!

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:56 AM
as for correct adjustment: .... the length is totally dependent on where the horse is in its training.
Thanks so much for the explanation. It was clearly written and extremely helpful. I now understand exactly how long to adjust them at specific times during training.

Wow, for someone who doesn't like it when others snark, you sure weren't very newbie friendly with that last answer, MBM.

No one has said there was anything wrong with USING side reins. The difference of opinion was with RIDING IN side reins.

I've never had an instructor use them. I've never used them because I've never been taught how to properly use them. I know better than to use equipment I'm not familiar with. I would like to learn.


also in individual settings, the horse shouldn't go in side reins for longer than 10 - 15 minutes each side. it is hard work but that's my thoughts for lunge work too. It's hard work for the horse.

This definitely makes sense for an individual training session. To take it back to Carolina's question, at what point does a trainer "know" that the horse is ready to try it without [insert favorite training device here]?

Thanks & I'll check back later today. COTH is blocked through work.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:19 AM
Err, I'm not sure I understand the direction the thread is going now. Is it about using side reins as a training device for the horse? Like a trainer riding the horse in side reins?

That I wouldn't understand.

Or are we now talking about using side reins for longing? That's pretty standard practice- even if I set them quite loose, I use side reins when longing.

Usually side reins would attach to the billets somewhere in the middle of the flap. In my photos, you'll sometimes see mine set lower- this is an equipment limitation and not a training decision. I usually set them so the horse is just in front of the vertical when his neck is long, now that he is in better condition (we started off longer).

As for how to know whether the horse or rider is ready to be off of a gadget, it's easy- you try it without and see how it goes ;)

mbm
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:24 AM
highflyinbey -

sorry, i wasnt trying to be snarky. and the bulk of my answer was directed to everyone that was saying that side reins should only be used for short period of time in the horses training and dispensed with when they get it. i was trying to show that side reins have many uses and they can and should be used though out the horses life/training.

as for length - there is no one answer about how long they should be. it *is* totally dependent on where the horse is in it's training.

on a green horse they should be long enough for the horse to be able to go in a "natural" outline with just a light contact... as the horse develops more balance etc the reins can be shortened. however, how short is totally dependent on the horse. there are many books that will go into more detail, or better yet, find a trainer that can teach you the proper way to use them.

for sure they can be dangerous if used in correctly ie: if they are put on too tight on a horse not used to them.

eta: i wanted also to address how long to use them in each training session - again, it is totally dependent on where the horse is in it's training. you wouldn't put a totally green bean on the lunge with side reins for 10-15 minutes. that would be very unfair.

you need to know your horse and watch them very carefully to ascertain when they are getting tired and not go beyond a certain point. yes, we want to push them, but gently - especially when they are green.

once a horse is built over the back etc they can wear them longer, but they should have walk breaks with the side resin loosened or removed.

ThreeFigs
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:37 AM
Lungeing the rider (with the horse in sidereins) creates a more stable "platform" for the rider to develop all the good postural habits we value in a dressage rider. Or any rider. However, it is to be assumed that the horse used for such lessons is well trained and suitable for the task.

I doubt that riding in a lunge lesson really teaches the rider how to put the horse on the bit -- at least in the case of beginners. Lungeing the rider periodically further down the learning path can indeed help him/her to develop more advanced skills that WILL help the rider put the horse truly on the bit and working over the back. While riding on the lunge, the student can practice the independent use and relaxation of muscle groups, ie., the core muscles, seat, thigh, and shoulder girdle.

A good instructor, acting as longeur, can direct the student through various exercises to improve balance, strength, coordination and confidence. The rider can get a "feel" for riding a horse "over the back", and, if given the reins with sidereins removed, may then begin to understand how the whole package is put together through the use of seat, leg and hand -- with the occasional support from the instructor.

Ultimately, the rider must learn how to put the horse together without the aid of sidereins, lungeline, or the whip in the instructor's hand. Lungeing the rider on a reliable, well-trained horse is a means to that end. Lunge lessons can greatly accelerate the beginner rider's learning curve, versus riding off the lunge, as the rider struggles along with the multitude of little tasks required in riding. In lungeing, the rider doesn't have to worry about steering, brakes, or acceleration -- that's all controlled by the instructor. As the basic skills improve (balance, coordination, confidence and strength), the rider can take on more "tasks", eventually graduating to independent riding (off lunge), with occasional refresher lessons on the lunge to correct bad habits.

I go back on the lunge myself from time to time. I have students who ask me to lunge them on their horses to keep them on the "straight & narrow". It is a wonderful teaching tool.

But riding in sidereins off lunge? Uh, not a fan. The Germans may have ponies appropriate for that task. I don't and neither do my students.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:54 AM
But riding in sidereins off lunge? Uh, not a fan. The Germans may have ponies appropriate for that task. I don't and neither do my students.

I guess I'm very lucky to have one! I guess I didn't realize that his steady going in side reins was so unusual.

I completely agree with you that one can't get the full experience of putting a horse on the bit in side reins. Only parts of it- controlling tempo with the seat and leg, playing with different levels of contact, etc. But since the horse can't come above the bit, a huge chunk of skill can't be learned until you venture out without the side reins.

On the other hand, for a person who doesn't know how to put a horse on the bit, and a horse who requires an educated hand to go on the bit, those seat/leg skills can be difficult to learn.

Ya know, if I'd known she was going to want to do dressage I'd have gotten her a schoolmaster type instead of an "all around" horse that could do a little of everything. I thought she was going to learn to jump on him and do a lot of trail riding. Best laid plans and all that ;)

ThreeFigs
Sep. 8, 2009, 12:20 PM
Ambrey, the horse has no choice, trussed up like that with a Pelham, side reins and flash. You are lucky indeed the animal is so tolerant. So your child rides him in side reins off the lunge as well? Asking for trouble. She's a good little rider -- she can dispense with the side reins and just enjoy her horse.

You told us once this horse was supposedly trained to Second Level, your mother claims it has a very sensitive mouth -- so why all the gadgetry? Were you mistaken about its level of training? One of your photos of your daughter riding shows a perfectly happy little horse in a snaffle, off the lunge.

With my students, I adhere to the K.I.S.S. principal. As little as possible to get the job done, whether we're talking about gear or aids.

I apologize in advance for asking for clarification, but I just don't understand the setup your trainer uses on that little horse.

Auventera Two
Sep. 8, 2009, 12:45 PM
I have ridden on the longe line with sidereins on multiple ocassions on two different lesson horses with two different dressage trainers. Until this thread, I had no reason to think it wasn't ok, or normal. :o :uhoh: My understanding of "why" was so that I didn't have to work on so many things at once. The school horses were well accustomed to the siderein work, so they traveled on the bit with their back more rounded up and soft. That made it easier for me to feel how a horse moves when on the bit, through their backs, and soft. The trainers did it to help show me what the complete package feels and looks like when I'm doing my part, and the horse is moving correctly.

It had NOTHING to do with the school horses not being safe or trustworthy. It was about me learning to put all the pieces together and feel what the end result was supposed to be.

Thinking back to those lessons, I believe we did the side reins + longe for like 15-20 minutes, working on both sides, then side reins came off, and I was coached to try to put the pieces together myself without the aid of the side reins.

Wow, the more I read coth the more I feel like an idiot.

ThreeFigs
Sep. 8, 2009, 12:57 PM
AT, there isn't anything wrong with it -- it's an excellent teaching tool when done by a competent trainer, using appropriately trained horses.

It's both OK and normal!

However, IF the horses used had not been safe or trustworthy, your experience with ridden lunge lessons would have been much, much different, less productive, even dangerous.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:05 PM
I apologize in advance for asking for clarification, but I just don't understand the setup your trainer uses on that little horse.

The whole sordid tale would take longer than you want to spend, and you REALLY don't want to get me started on how many things my mom and I don't agree on :winkgrin: (sorry mom!).

But to answer your specific questions:

1) Sure, pony has schooled 2nd level. Never competed, though. He also was out in a field for a year before we got him. In my trainer's words "he knows stuff, but he's so opinionated!"

2) Yes, pony has sensitive mouth. Bump his mouth, feel his wrath. Girl came off of 2 years of h/j training without much control of her hands. Every lesson since she started with dressage trainer has been focused on strengthening her seat/leg and developing very controlled hands- without risking pony's wrath.

3) Current setup is transitional. Learning to use pelham/double reins so if she does incur pony's wrath when she is out in the big world and pushing him she has a bit more control.

Does that help?

FancyFree
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:06 PM
I have ridden on the longe line with sidereins on multiple ocassions on two different lesson horses with two different dressage trainers. Until this thread, I had no reason to think it wasn't ok, or normal.

I haven't seen where anyone wrote that it wasn't normal ON the longeline. In fact it's a well established way of allowing a beginner to get a feel without having to bother with the distraction of aids or reins. What some wrote, myself included, is that they have always heard/believe that it is dangerous to ride with sidereins while OFF the longeline.

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:13 PM
A2 - it probably isn't clear but the reason I started this thread was because of the photos in the first post - the sight of someone riding with side reins OFF the lunge line. There's been some good information and conversation throughout the thread.

I personally don't think I would ever do it, but I respect Ambrey's decision to allow her daughter to ride the way her trainer has instructed.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:20 PM
I personally don't think I would ever do it, but I respect Ambrey's decision to allow her daughter to ride the way her trainer has instructed.

Thank you.

And I did read the side reins thread some weeks ago, and would never "try this at home." My trainer can see things that I don't see and knows what to look for.

My daughter has yet to have any scary incidents with pony, and I do mean to keep it that way.

Moderator 1
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:42 PM
A2 - it probably isn't clear but the reason I started this thread was because of the photos in the first post - the sight of someone riding with side reins OFF the lunge line. There's been some good information and conversation throughout the thread.



We added the "off the longe" clarification to the thread title to help avoid further confusion on that point. Hitch, since you were the "real" OP of this thread, if you ever want to tweak the thread title further, please let us know. :)

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 8, 2009, 01:45 PM
We added the "off the longe" clarification to the thread title to help avoid further confusion on that point. Hitch, since you were the "real" OP of this thread, if you ever want to tweak the thread title further, please let us know. :)

Thanks!

gypsymare
Sep. 8, 2009, 02:04 PM
I was instructed for several lessons to use side reins under saddle and not on the lunge. Attached high on the billets and to a smooth french link O-ring snaffle just short enough to place the horse's head vertical to slightly longer. The purpose was to allow me to concentrate on my seat and legs and keep a soft hand while the side reins encouraged the horse to stay round and not throw her nose up and out in evasion. My horse and I were both new to dressage but not to riding and she is certainly not dangerous. I believe the way they were used was highly effective in allowing both of us to progress quickly through the initial transition. Once taken off there were a few things we had to relearn but by that point I'd gotten a better idea of what I was supposed to be doing with the rest of my body and could put the pieces together.

I still don't see why lunging under saddle with a rider up in side reins and riding in an arena with side reins are so terribly different mechanically or in their degree of safety.

JSwan
Sep. 8, 2009, 02:05 PM
[QUOTE=Carolinadreamin';4360025 How many here have seen side reins used improperly, for example for too long (time wise)? What constitutes over use? If a horse is being "trained" in side reins, is 4,5, or even 12 months too long? [/QUOTE]

I've used sidereins and think it's pretty normal. But for work on the longe -without a rider. They can be used on the longe with a rider in some cases. When I've used them (been a long time) I think we used them for.... 15 minutes? For a few weeks? Certainly not long term or regularly. Maybe things have changed.... I've not taken dressage lessons in a few years.

But they are not used to "set" a head, to put a horse in a "frame" or any other such nonsense. Coupled with a severe bit and a green rider - it is a horrific accident waiting to happen.

You don't overmount children or green riders, and you don't use severe bits and things like sidereins to create an artificial sense of control. It's terribly unfair to both horse and rider - and dangerous for both. Kids and green riders need packers - and such horses and ponies are worth every penny. :yes:

Hopefully the horse in question does not decide it's had enough and flip out. It's not pretty.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 8, 2009, 02:12 PM
Errrr, I would wonder about a trainer putting all those gadgets and gizmos on my horse for months on end or even a year. Doesn't seem like classical dressage training for either horse or rider for that length of time.

JSwan
Sep. 8, 2009, 02:14 PM
It's not any kind of training.

Eclectic Horseman
Sep. 8, 2009, 02:23 PM
Weighing in very late here, but I have seen side reins used well off the longe in cases where very well behaved elderly schoolmasters are being ridden by intermediate student riders who are still struggling with their seats. Some of these wise old guys will take advantage of a rider's lack of core strength and/or imperfect position by subtly leaning on the bit and pulling the rider forward or easing the reins out of the rider's hands.

It can be useful in such a situation to use side reins to keep the schoolmaster on the straight and narrow while the rider improves her seat and learns the way that things should feel. Obviously, this is of limited value over the long term, because the rider has got to learn to get there on her own at some point. But it can be helpful with a quiet and well trained but uncooperative schoolmaster.

JSwan
Sep. 8, 2009, 02:29 PM
I was more puzzled by the pelham with the flash (in combination with side reins) more than the side reins alone, particularly in view of this:
Pony has a sensitive mouth so the tack choice does not make a whole lot of sense.

Agreed - that makes no sense.

If the student needs to focus on her seat - a better bet is lessons on the longe - sans reins and stirrups. And perhaps a different horse if this one has a lot of "wrath". This horse isn't a schoolmaster or a good lesson horse from the sound of it.

sidereins, pelham, flash, beginner rider, unsteady hands, hot horse - recipe for a horrific accident. Seriously.

see u at x
Sep. 8, 2009, 03:37 PM
Truly, not trying to bash anyone here, but I agree with those who mentioned that the kid should be riding a schoolmaster or at least a horse with much more training. It does sound as though he's unsuitable for her in several ways. That being said, I do also understand what it is like to have to work with what you have. Though frankly, the whole things seems like a vicious circle. A can't happen if B doesn't happen, but B can't happen if C doesn't happen, and C can't happen if A doesn't happen.

I'm not a fan of this trainer's methods in this particular case - it seems way too gadgety and as though they're trying to take too many shortcuts. (I have no issues with the use of side reins on the longe line, but I'm very confused by the pelham and flash as well as any riding in side reins off the longe.) It just seems like lazy training to me, not to mention I have awful images in my head of things just waiting to happen.

In my world, training takes as long as it takes. There is no time frame because it is a constant 2 steps forward, 3 steps back process. I don't care if it takes me and/or my horses years and years to "get" just one movement or to understand the "feel" that is involved...as long as it has been done correctly and with kindness to my horses. This whole scenario just doesn't seem "correct" to me...at all.

katarine
Sep. 8, 2009, 03:50 PM
sell the pony and get her one she can enjoy. Who's dressage dream is this, yours or hers? What 12 yo wants to ride a pony with it's head tied to it's girth?on the longe or off?

the whole thing is square peg round hole to me.

Auventera Two
Sep. 8, 2009, 03:55 PM
A2 - it probably isn't clear but the reason I started this thread was because of the photos in the first post - the sight of someone riding with side reins OFF the lunge line. There's been some good information and conversation throughout the thread.

I personally don't think I would ever do it, but I respect Ambrey's decision to allow her daughter to ride the way her trainer has instructed.

Ok, I see. Sorry! I didn't read the whole thread, and I can't view Photobucket, so I misunderstood.

Coreene
Sep. 8, 2009, 03:59 PM
My friend's very beautiful mare is now dead for this very reason. Horrific accident.

Thomas_1
Sep. 8, 2009, 03:59 PM
Not a good idea at all to ride in side reins UNLESS there's a trainer who has the horse control on a lunge line or long reins. Otherwise if the horse stumbles, spooks, or bucks, you or he could get a foot tangled in the side reins - which you can't release from the saddle. The difficulty of lengthening or shortening the side reins while mounted is another reason they're best used while you're on the ground or being longed. And a horse who slips while in side reins won't be able to use his head and neck to regain his balance - so really NOT sensible at all.

If it's a child riding then dumb idea if the horse slips and falls a child could end up underneath and trapped with a leg in the side reins.

Bad horsemanship to let a pupil ride solo with side reins.

AnotherRound
Sep. 8, 2009, 04:15 PM
I agree, its bad bad bad all around, its not teaching either one of them anything. Horse and rider are happy hacking around in a snaffle. Isn't getting the horse to look relaxed and happy the first thing about dressage? THe child has nice hands. The pair should be fine in some intro and training classes, soon. What more do you want? anything more will take a few more years to develop, and shyould be developed without those gagets any way. I mean, when do you take them away, and start to train???. It looks to me like the trainer is pushing both to conform to something neither is ready for. Bad form. Hope mom intervenes and tells trainer to let her ride intro and training in the snaffle and in order to do that she should be taking her lessons in the snaffle. Until she can get from her snaffle riding to Training, witnout the gadgets, that's all she gets. Do the right thing by your child, Ambrey, get the trainer to drop the pretenses and the dangerous gizmos and work on her RIDING not on frustrating the pony.

That's my take.

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 8, 2009, 04:32 PM
http://www.chronicleforums.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=222804

A reminder of how quickly things can happen to even the best of horses. And exactly why I would never ride with side reins.

FancyFree
Sep. 8, 2009, 04:42 PM
It looks to me like the trainer is pushing both to conform to something neither is ready for. Bad form. Hope mom intervenes and tells trainer to let her ride intro and training in the snaffle and in order to do that she should be taking her lessons in the snaffle. Until she can get from her snaffle riding to Training, witnout the gadgets, that's all she gets. Do the right thing by your child, Ambrey, get the trainer to drop the pretenses and the dangerous gizmos and work on her RIDING not on frustrating the pony.

That's my take.

To play the Devil's Advocate, maybe the trainer has the horse so tacked up in the interest of safety for the child, not to achieve a frame. Still, I don't agree with a green student going off the longeline with a green/wrathful horse in sidereins. Not safe, imo. Green+green, many times,= black and blue.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 04:47 PM
As I've said before, we'll have to agree to disagree on many issues.

Pony is not being sold any time soon, my trainer is taking my daughter off side reins at a pace he thinks is appropriate, and I do not agree that loose reins are at all the same thing as taut side reins.

The pelham- well, pony makes it quite obvious that one must have a light hand in such a bit. Is it the one I would choose? For my daughter, probably yes, just for extra control although he's never demonstrated the need. When I ride him it's always in a snaffle.

Still no advice for how to keep him from putting his tongue over the bit without the flash, although a lot of crankiness about using it. Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

katarine
Sep. 8, 2009, 04:54 PM
Ambrey's willingness to change her mind in the light of new evidence is a sign of her rationality not her weakness.


Right, Ambrey?

FancyFree
Sep. 8, 2009, 04:58 PM
For the tongue getting over the bit, I used this successfully. My trainer called it my horse's binky. :lol:

http://www.doversaddlery.com/rubber-bit-port/p/X1-021/cn/1481/

goeslikestink
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:05 PM
As I've said before, we'll have to agree to disagree on many issues

ambrey how much is your daughter worth to you?



Pony is not being sold any time soon, my trainer is taking my daughter off side reins at a pace he thinks is appropriate, and I do not agree that loose reins are at all the same thing as taut side reins.

didnt say you had to sell him, as for your trianer i dont care for his training methods as thye are not ideal and if he has to resort to gadjets then you not going to get any advancement with the horse in any disipline



The pelham- well, pony makes it quite obvious that one must have a light hand in such a bit.
shes hands set and like you supports her bodyweight in the bridle and hangs on for grim death this is not being light in the hands or riding between leg and hands its called hanging on - to a horse thats far to strong for her
and if you were advised by yur trianer to buy this perticular horse then you was advised wrongly


Is it the one I would choose? For my daughter, probably yes, just for extra control although he's never demonstrated the need.

yes he has pictures clearly show this

When I ride him it's always in a snaffle.

you to have the same trouble with him as in seen in your pictures to you tend to hang on to the head in the same way you do with your grey horse
this agian is bad training given to you by your trainer and to let you both continue in this manor

again clearly show lack of knowledge in understanding how to work a horse properly from butt to poll to a relaxed yaw


Still no advice for how to keep him from putting his tongue over the bit without the flash, although a lot of crankiness about using it. Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

get a dentist to check his teeth and mouth get someone oother than your trainer to show you how to put on and how to alter your bridle to the correct lenght if in doubt all a master saddler.. they will then measure the hroses head and bit lenght /size required

the trianer is charging you heaps -- and your not getting the correct trianing you both need - find another trianer with a brain and good horsemanship you can find accredited trianer on any club association or society listed with the fei they all are listed there
join a 4-h group or riding club

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:06 PM
find a trainer that can teach you the proper way to use them. ... you need to know your horse and watch them very carefully

Thanks for the explanation. If I were to ever use side reins, I would definitely hire a trainer first.

I also agree, you do need to know your own horse when training. I started June Bug, Bailey & Marcus myself. I watched them closely every single time and made sure I didn't push too far too fast. I didn't use gadgets and shortcuts.

It's how I knew I could ride Bailey bareback (w-t&c) even though he hadn't been ridden but 3-4 times in two years. The day it felt "right," I hopped up with no fuss, no longeing or anything. I knew it was OK because I knew my horse.

There have been a couple of times where I didn't listen to my gut and I came to regret it. The last time cost Marcus his life.

NO "trainer" no matter what awards they've won, how many clients they have or how much they charge will EVER come between me & what I feel is best for my horse. PERIOD.

Coppers mom
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:15 PM
Honestly, what's the difference between a horse using side reins on the lunge and off? There are two people hanging on rather than one? What's to stop a horse from spooking, tripping, or anything else you guys seem to be so worried about while on the lunge? Someone on the ground isn't going to stop a trip, they're not going to stop a spook. If a horse is going to do something to get a leg caught, being on the lunge isn't going to help, it just adds more things for the horse to get tangled up in.

I realize side reins restrict a horse's ability to use it's head and neck for balance. But seriously, this is ridiculous. Having a rider in side reins on the lunge is no less dangerous than when they're off on their own. The same accidents can happen, someone keeping the horse on a circle isn't going to help.

goeslikestink
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:25 PM
in the wisdom of you trianer ambrey as just had to have another gander at the photos
the side reins arnt attached correctly so in truth they are more dangerous than you may think

also in your trianer wisdom he hasnt told you trhat lunging from the same side as the bit ring is a huge no no

as you will be pulling the horses bit through his mouth and hurting him

ThreeFigs
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:26 PM
For the tongue over the bit problem, Ambrey, you might start a fresh thread, since this one is about riding in side reins...

I am in total agreement with JSwan's comments in post #165. I fear that eventually, this horse will become "wrathful" enough to do harm. A frustrated horse is a dangerous horse.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:29 PM
In terms of the tongue over the bit, in general isn't a horse expressing discomfort when he does this? It could be the wrong bit, wrong size, something is incorrectly adjusted (bit too low, perhaps) or even discomfort from being ridden. I think the flash is just treating the symptom, not the cause.

ThreeFigs
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:46 PM
Yes, I'd agree with all that, Carolinadreamin'. If the tongue over bit is due to discomfort, tying the horse's mouth shut with a flash will only make it angrier and more frustrated. Putting said horse on a lunge line and expecting it to be a child's lesson horse is asking for trouble.

Good lunge line horses are impeccably trained and as close to bomb-proof as a horse can be.

slc2
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:52 PM
Raise the bit. It looks too low in the pictures. That can be why he puts his tongue over, because the bit is uncomfortable where it is at,so they try to get their tongue out fromm under it. The bit feels a lot better up higher in the mouth where the tongue is much thicker.

Movin Artfully
Sep. 8, 2009, 05:54 PM
Still no advice for how to keep him from putting his tongue over the bit without the flash, although a lot of crankiness about using it. Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

Teaching the horse to step into the contact by offering more releases of at least inside rein when the horse gets it right will help this issue. The horse may only be ready to self-carry for one stride. Impossible for a youth rider unless the trainer is verbally riding each stride with them. Trainer should be able to do this. May involve a lot of walk/halt/take/release "boring" lessons for your daughter.

Hats off to you Ambrey. I would have some serious conversations with your trainer...but you are weathering this COTH storm very well.

To all of the posters who say "DUMP the horse...BUY your daughter a schoolmaster"... Will everyone who grew up with their own schoolmaster at their disposal at 12 yo please raise their hand? Anyone? Bueller? :rolleyes: RIIIGHT...

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 8, 2009, 06:17 PM
For the tongue over the bit problem, Ambrey, you might start a fresh thread, since this one is about riding in side reins...

I am in total agreement with JSwan's comments in post #165. I fear that eventually, this horse will become "wrathful" enough to do harm. A frustrated horse is a dangerous horse.

Done. Please move comments on tongues and bits HERE (http://www.chronicleforums.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=222829)

Thanks!!

ThreeFigs
Sep. 8, 2009, 06:30 PM
MA, when I was this kid's age, I had an old farm chunk mare, a bareback pad, and a Western bridle with an old rusty plowhorse snaffle on it. The old mare that my folks bought me was the safest, quietest most patient horse in the world. She was not at all pretty, not fast, not light on her feet, but she took me through all my early phases with grace and good humor.

I could do anything with her, sort of. She barrel raced, (too slow) she jumped (somewhat earthbound, but she tried), she was my partner in games of cops 'n' robbers, hide and seek, and breakneck gallops up and down the creekbed.

Few have advised Ambrey to buy a schoolmaster, but many have advised finding a good, quiet, dead-broke older horse for this child to HAVE FUN with. A horse that doesn't have to be trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey to be safe for her.

Dressage is a life-long endeavor. This child doesn't have to master everything before the age of 16. In fact, she may achieve more with less structure in her riding.

slc2
Sep. 8, 2009, 06:41 PM
To the extent the parents can afford to indulge what the kid wants, it really depends on what the KID wants to do, Bea. Sure you liked doing what you did. Maybe this kid likes doing THIS.

If she likes to feel like she's getting into dressage by practicing on a suitably under control pony so she isn't made into a road pizza, taking lessons from the nice man, so be it.

If she would prefer to shuffle around a field on an ancient wide-load pony and do pony makeovers and put sparkles on her pony, that's what she should be doing.

If it was my kid, I'd get rid of the strong palomino and buy a different pony. The palomino looks like it should be doing a hunter pace or mini eventing with a bigger, stronger kid. I would want my kid to have a pony that doesn't need a lot of adult intervention. I'd want my kid to be able to put her friends up on the pony, have pony sleepovers, go riding out in a field with her friends, stuff like that. Course if my kid didn't like that, that would be the end of that, LOL.

I'd get something different for that kid. Smaller, lighter, older, more schooled, kick n go uncomplicated pony. Maybe Ambrey can't afford that. People do what they have to do. Maybe she's attached to the pony and doesn't want to get rid of it.

Kids usually keep an interest in one sport or activity for about 6 weeks. Different kinds of sports equipment tends to accumulate in the garage while parents lament.

Most kids, after six weeks, the rest of the time, they are doing it because mom and dad want them to keep doing it, or the coach does. It's a rare kid that wants to keep with riding in a serious way. If they want to, they should be allowed to as much as possible. And if like most kids, for whom 6 weeks later roller skates are more interesting, or video games, then that's what they will be most happy doing.

I know one kid of ten, who all she wants to do is ride saddle seat. She loves the clothes and the horse's heads up in the air. There was a little pinto saddle seat pony she pranced around on in lessons.

Another kid of ten, all he wanted to do was event. At ten he was training his own pony and had been following an older rider on a lead line around hunter pace courses and jumping everything since he was about six, if he didn't get to ride one day he was not a happy camper. At sixteen he was going prelim and then intermediate. He'll probably be a professional when he finishes school.

Kids are different. They want different things. Most don't stay interested in riding. If they do, God bless 'em. If they don't, God bless 'em.

Sithly
Sep. 8, 2009, 06:42 PM
I agree with Beasmom. When I was that age, my grandparents had a pony that I rode the heck out of all summer. Grampa knew how to pick 'em, too, because that pony exhibited none of the pony behavior I saw in other ponies when I was older. I didn't even know that "pony" was a four-letter word until much later in my riding career. :lol:

Ah, Trigger ... bless his sainted heart. He was never wrathful. I used to take weekly huntseat lessons at home on school horses, then go out to "practice" on the pony. I'm sure I tortured him!

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 06:58 PM
Raise the bit. It looks too low in the pictures. That can be why he puts his tongue over, because the bit is uncomfortable where it is at,so they try to get their tongue out fromm under it. The bit feels a lot better up higher in the mouth where the tongue is much thicker.

We have tried that, and it makes him very uncomfortable and he gapes :(

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:01 PM
I took Will out on the trails and pretended I was a character in the "Adventures of Black Beauty" that aired on Nickelodeon in the 80s. There was one particular trail in the woods that I just LOVED to canter on when no one was looking. On the days the hot air balloon would go overhead, none of the horses would come in. I'd have to go fetch them but as soon as I'd get within range, they'd take off for the barn. So I quit taking a halter along and would hop on Will bareback and just hang onto mane for the gallop with 30-40 other horses, down the hill and through the arena to the corral, free as a bird and not a helmet in sight.

That was one fun summer :cool:

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:06 PM
We have tried that, and it makes him very uncomfortable and he gapes :(

Your horse is desperately trying to tell you that particular bit does not fit him. Does the joint hit his palate? Pinch his tongue or cheeks?

Seriously, Ambrey, instead of using a stronger bit and tying his mouth shut, figure out WHY that bit doesn't work for him. If nothing else, just think of all the bit shopping you'll get to do :winkgrin:

That bit does.not.fit.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:10 PM
LOL, nobody is forcing her to take dressage lessons, but she does know that she needs to be with a trainer to keep up with this pony. This trainer is a combined trainer and does dressage, hunters, and jumpers. He has worked with her on jumping position, and has jumped the pony, but daughter is adamant right now that she doesn't want to jump.

The time for selling this pony and getting a quieter one has come and gone. NOW the pony is being very good. NOW my daughter is able to ride him independently all over the place. 6 months ago I certainly would not have promised you we'd ever get here.

Daughter is really enjoying her horse right now. She enjoys lessons, enjoys riding, enjoys all of it. That's a good thing :)

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:17 PM
Your horse is desperately trying to tell you that particular bit does not fit him. Does the joint hit his palate? Pinch his tongue or cheeks?

This is an ongoing issue, not "this bit." I believe it's a combination of his mouth conformation and just bad habits learned through maybe having been ridden in uncomfortable bits.

As I said before- the mullen (pelham or happy mouth snaffle) and the fat, triple link snaffle are the two that he's the best in, but the tongue still goes over. No gaping or balking, just the tongue over. The flash keeps him from doing that without being too tight.

His teeth are fine (redone a couple of months ago, but weren't that bad). I suspect he has a combination of very sensitive lips and bars and not much room, so that a thin snaffle is too harsh but the fat snaffle doesn't leave enough tongue room. I've tried the myler.

The only thing I've not tried is something with a port. Maybe I should try that? Any other suggestions outside of the norm (since I've tried everything inside of the norm...).

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:38 PM
If he has such sensitive lips, why is he in a pelham? I would think the snaffle would be plenty if he's that responsive.

Yes, look at bits with a port. In fact, start another thread asking for suggestions on mouthpieces. It will be much better than taking over the side rein issue.

goeslikestink
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:42 PM
If he has such sensitive lips, why is he in a pelham? I would think the snaffle would be plenty if he's that responsive.

Yes, look at bits with a port. In fact, start another thread asking for suggestions on mouthpieces. It will be much better than taking over the side rein issue.

horses can advade the bit as its the hands that cause the problem
as the trianer isnt or doesnt work the pupil or horse from butt to poll to a relaxed yaw
the the horse is going to shout at you any way he can in this instance -- the pony puts the tongue over the bit as an advasion bad hands --

look here http://www.chronicleforums.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=178116

then look at link no 2

FancyFree
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:51 PM
in the wisdom of you trianer ambrey as just had to have another gander at the photos
the side reins arnt attached correctly so in truth they are more dangerous than you may think

also in your trianer wisdom he hasnt told you trhat lunging from the same side as the bit ring is a huge no no

as you will be pulling the horses bit through his mouth and hurting him

GLS can you elaborate on this post? I wasn't on to catch it right away.

How are the sidereins connected incorrectly? I can't really make it out in the picture. Also when you talk about longing on the bit side, do you mean he's connected the longe line directly to the horse's bit, on the side facing him? I ask because when I longe, I put my line through the snaffle ring, up over the poll and attach it to the other side bit ring. I'm wondering if that's correct.

goeslikestink
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:54 PM
GLS can you elaborate on this post? I wasn't on to catch it right away.

How are the sidereins connected incorrectly? I can't really make it out in the picture. Also when you talk about longing on the bit side, do you mean he's connected the longe line directly to the horse's bit, on the side facing him? I ask because when I longe, I put my line through the snaffle ring, up over the poll and attach it to the other side bit ring. I'm wondering if that's correct.



becuase the side reins are connected to the roundings and not to the bit

and the longing is done on the same side as the the person lunging via the bit
which as you have stated you lunge on the opposite side to you via putting the line up and over the poll the other alternative is under the chin to the opposite side

if one lunges on the same side as the bit ring then a- you can pull the bit through the mouth causing the pony pain and b-- he got time think up more ways to avade you as you would be encouraging him to

spaghetti legs
Sep. 8, 2009, 07:59 PM
FF that's quite correct to lunge as you have been, If you snap the lunge directly to the inside bit ring, you will most likely be pulling the bit through the mouth sideways - it's just sloppy and most people are better off lunging in a proper cavesson and then swapping to their bridle when they want to hope on.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:00 PM
becuase they are connected to the roundings and not to the bit

No, they are not. We don't use roundings. They are connected to the bit.

goeslikestink
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:09 PM
i appologise but the picture is very unclear- but still doesnt excuse the use off on a horse that to much horse for your daughter

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:12 PM
Hats off to you Ambrey. I would have some serious conversations with your trainer...but you are weathering this COTH storm very well.

Thank you! I have quite a few serious discussions with my trainer, but I'm unlikely to discuss them here ;)

nhwr
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:46 PM
I don't worry so much about side reins. If they have leather or elastic, chances are they will break under stress and the worst that will happen is a very nasty tumble. Of course, that brings its own risks. But in my experience, no real dressage trainer uses a pelham for any reason, especially not for a forward pony. In dressage, forward is a good thing :yes:

I look at this situation similarly to when my brother got his 10 year old son a motorized skate board.When the 10 year old was tooling around the neighborhood going 25 mph, my brother said "hey he likes it"
I said, "What, are you tired of him?"

With horses and kids, we are supposed to be smarter, wiser. But that isn't always the case.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:51 PM
But in my experience, no real dressage trainer uses a pelham for any reason, especially not for a forward pony. In dressage, forward is a good thing :yes:

I have clearly had different experiences :) In my experience, yes, sometimes real dressage trainers use a pelham.

Most of the other kids ride their hunter ponies in 3 ring gag bits. I figure mine is way ahead of the game ;)

narcisco
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:55 PM
I think I'm answering Cooper's question from about 3 pages back, about what the difference is between having a horse in sidereins on or off the longe line and what the difference is. The difference is usually in the longeur's skill and rapport with the horse on the longe. It is usually in prevention, although you're right it can not always prevent a trip and fall.

So, if the pony is bouncing around in an adrenaline surge, the longeur can reel him in. If the pony is wandering away to eat grass, where he will put his head down and stick his foot in the sidereins, the longeur can keep him on a circle. If the pony is starting a bolt, the longeur can half halt strongly enough to get his attention and avert it. If he is starting to bog his head to buck, the longeur can snap his head up. If the pony is starting to fall on the forehand, precipitating a trip, the longeur can go after the hindquarters while keeping the tempo from the longe line. He can rebalance the horse and keep him focused and working in a way that can not happen off the longe.

In addition, on the longe, the rider can ride without reins to develop the seat without interference with the hands. We haven't talked much about the leverage of having both sidereins and bridle reins in the rider's hands. The sidereins exert a pull down and back if the horse raises his head. The rider's hands might exert a pull anywhere, including back and UP if she loses her balance. This can a very large conflict of cues. It's the same reason we never lead a horse with the sidereins attached, but wait until he is on the longe line so we can drive him forward. Leading a horse in sidereins can exert a pull forward at the same time the sidereins are exerting a pull down and back. I have seen horses rear and flip from such a conflict. Having a person to drive the horse forward on the longe can help, but not always prevent, this type of accident.

I don't know if the child is leading this pony around in sidereins when she is done riding, but the sidereins should be fastened only when the rider is up and the horse ready to longe. They should be unfastened and snapped safely up when the rider halts, before dismounting. Lots of safety issues inherent in their use.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 8, 2009, 08:57 PM
Sugarcoat it all you want. Tell us you think it's great. I remember the many discussions about the pelham bit you and your trainer had your other horse in for dressage training. This trainer is a dressage trainer and he thinks dressage in a pelham is OK. Dressage. In a pelham. Is not. Dressage.

Stop the trainwreck before it starts.

SBrentnall
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:11 PM
When I lived in Germany, it was common to see kids riding trained horses or ponies in side reins. Although they were attached to snaffles rather than more severe bits.

The idea was that the kids learned the feeling of riding a round horse with lifted back, so they knew what they were aiming for later. And the horse didn't learn to travel in a hollow frame, even when beginners were on them.

Side reins were generally attached only after the horse was warmed up and only under an instructor's supervision.

I saw this at my barn, and pretty much every other barn I visited. I was told it's pretty usual.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:13 PM
So, if the pony is bouncing around in an adrenaline surge, the longeur can reel him in. If the pony is wandering away to eat grass, where he will put his head down and stick his foot in the sidereins, the longeur can keep him on a circle. If the pony is starting a bolt, the longeur can half halt strongly enough to get his attention and avert it. If he is starting to bog his head to buck, the longeur can snap his head up.

Uh, if this is your idea of a forward, opinionated pony I totally take it back. Ours is a total gem. :eek:

nhwr
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:33 PM
I have clearly had different experiences :)Clearly we do have different experience. I have owned 3 winning FEI horses, 2 of whom I bought off the track and brought along. You expereince would be?
In my experience, yes, sometimes real dressage trainers use a pelham.Name three.

Though I don't see that the issue that needs to be addressed is going to be fixed by a bit, actually as a short term remedey, a gag bit is probably preferable.

I predict a response of resounding silence.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:37 PM
Any day of the week, you can likely see FEI horses as well as lower level horses being ridden in pelhams at my barn.

Not necessarily ridden or trained by my trainer.

Yes, these horses win.

angel
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:38 PM
This thread has gone on many pages, and I confess, I have not read all of them. My comments are based on the original pictures posted. Riding in sidereins without the benefit of an experienced lungeperson to act as a safety net should the horse do something stupid is very dangerous as there is no way for the rider to do a quick release should the horse begin to rear. It is dangerous for an adult, and even more so for a child, whose legs are not really long enough to drive the horse forward to try to prevent the horse from going over backwards.

The other thing that I notice in these pictures is that your horse is beginning to develop a mouth problem, wanting to put the tongue out. My guess is that with his thick neck, the overbent position that is created by the leverage of the pelham is partially closing his throat. He is trying to get his tongue to the side so that he can breathe better. Even it were safe to ride in sidereins, these sidereins are way too tightly adjusted.

Carolinadreamin'
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:44 PM
That's a very logical explanation, angel. It makes a lot of sense. I predict it will be ignored.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 09:44 PM
Angel, can you show me the photo where you think he's trying to get his tongue out the side?

PM me if you'd like.

I don't really get the side reins being too short, because in all of the photos I see, the side reins are slack. I do see him jamming his neck, though.

Pony Fixer
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:00 PM
Any day of the week, you can likely see FEI horses as well as lower level horses being ridden in pelhams at my barn.

Not necessarily ridden or trained by my trainer.

Yes, these horses win.

I find this curious, if not unlikely. I've seen a LOT of bad dressage, and none of it in a pelham. In fact, I can't remember the last time I saw a pelham. But here on the east coast we take our dressage more seriously. ;)

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:13 PM
I find this curious, if not unlikely. I've seen a LOT of bad dressage, and none of it in a pelham. In fact, I can't remember the last time I saw a pelham. But here on the east coast we take our dressage more seriously. ;)

I doubt any of the trainers or riders in question would say they don't take dressage seriously. They might admit to not taking themselves too seriously, though ;)

MistyBlue
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:14 PM
Pelhams are for the hunt field.
Elevators are for the jumper ring.

Hearing about pelhams in dressage and elevators in hunters makes me imagine a beginner barn with a couple of teens who hung out their shingles as trainers. Because those two bits do not belong in those two disciplines...they are exactly the opposite of what's productive to those disciplines.
It'd be like trying to drive with the emergency brakes engaged. You'll fry the transmission and then blow the engine.
Which can also happen to a horse. :no:

A pelham, flash and side reins in a discipline that's supposed to be forward *way* before collected is like trying to drive with the emergency brake yanked, an anchor thrown out the back and while towing the QE2.
Add in the thick throatlatch on the horse and the completely unnaturally overset head...and the side reins being attached so ridiculously low and short (yes, short even if the cranked in face makes them look loopy they're way too short) and it's like you removed the air filter too...can he breathe? Or swallow? :no:

Yeah, some trainers have weird methods and still have winning horses.
And tack poled jumpers, sored TWHs and western pleasure horses that have their heads tied to the rafters all night before a show also win sometimes too.
Doesn't make any of it right.

FancyFree
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:15 PM
I find this curious, if not unlikely. I've seen a LOT of bad dressage, and none of it in a pelham. In fact, I can't remember the last time I saw a pelham. But here on the east coast we take our dressage more seriously. ;)


I can't speak for any other barn, but at the barns I've been at, I've never seen a dressage rider use a Pelham, ever. Lots of jumper people, sure, dressage, no. So don't believe everything you hear about us west coasters. ;)

Coppers mom
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:32 PM
I think I'm answering Cooper's question from about 3 pages back, about what the difference is between having a horse in sidereins on or off the longe line and what the difference is. The difference is usually in the longeur's skill and rapport with the horse on the longe. It is usually in prevention, although you're right it can not always prevent a trip and fall.

So, if the pony is bouncing around in an adrenaline surge, the longeur can reel him in. If the pony is wandering away to eat grass, where he will put his head down and stick his foot in the sidereins, the longeur can keep him on a circle. If the pony is starting a bolt, the longeur can half halt strongly enough to get his attention and avert it. If he is starting to bog his head to buck, the longeur can snap his head up. If the pony is starting to fall on the forehand, precipitating a trip, the longeur can go after the hindquarters while keeping the tempo from the longe line. He can rebalance the horse and keep him focused and working in a way that can not happen off the longe.

In addition, on the longe, the rider can ride without reins to develop the seat without interference with the hands. We haven't talked much about the leverage of having both sidereins and bridle reins in the rider's hands. The sidereins exert a pull down and back if the horse raises his head. The rider's hands might exert a pull anywhere, including back and UP if she loses her balance. This can a very large conflict of cues. It's the same reason we never lead a horse with the sidereins attached, but wait until he is on the longe line so we can drive him forward. Leading a horse in sidereins can exert a pull forward at the same time the sidereins are exerting a pull down and back. I have seen horses rear and flip from such a conflict. Having a person to drive the horse forward on the longe can help, but not always prevent, this type of accident.

I don't know if the child is leading this pony around in sidereins when she is done riding, but the sidereins should be fastened only when the rider is up and the horse ready to longe. They should be unfastened and snapped safely up when the rider halts, before dismounting. Lots of safety issues inherent in their use.

And a rider couldn't do any of this becaaauuuse?

There's no reason a rider couldn't stop the pony from eating, running away, or losing forward impulsion any more than a person on the ground.

meupatdoes
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:35 PM
So 11 pages later let me see if I have it straight.

1. Some feel it important to make a concerted effort to win one for the anti-side rein team and shame Ambrey into reconsidering her nefarious ways; perhaps she will flounce out of her pelham-using trainer's establishment; certainly if we have done our job properly she will realize how much she sucks and feel terrible about both her horsemanship and her parenting and possibly even her very existence on the planet and wouldn't it be great if we could get her to cry in the corner. Additional points if you can get anyone else who has ever used side reins in the past or even considered it to feel terrible about their horsemanship, cry in a corner, and give up riding altogether.

2. Ambrey is inconsiderately refusing to cry (if she just would this would all be over as group 1. could feel smugly victorious and beat their chests doing the war dance around the fire pit to celebrate the thrill of the kill), thinks the pelham is fine with however many sidereins attached to whatever piece of the blasted pelham, doesn't appear to be leaving her trainer anytime soon, will carry on regardless, and really the pony is not going to be scarred emotionally and Ambrey's get oh wait I'm sorry her produce is highly unlikely to die and probably if we really consider it reasonably everyone is having a fine and dandy experience either way and honestly does the world have to spin itself into a froth over when some 8(ish?) year old is "correctly" learning the fundamentals of dressage.

Either way it seems that Group 1 is not going to get their chest beating fire pit war dance celebration no matter how fervently or stridently they try because Group 2 just isn't going to a.) cry, b.) take off the side reins, c.) sell the pony, or even d.) FEEL REMORSE (and by golly she should FEEL TERRIBLE Y/Y??!!) about not doing a.), b.), or c.). Group 1 appears to have strayed from any other purpose other than trying to make Group 2 cry, which is tiresome in itself but especially special considering a young child is involved.

Hope has long been given up by both sides of ever coming back to a reasonable or even incrementally respectful/productive discussion so Group 1 digs in trying to get in their last best pithy comments and Group 2 blithely carries on.

I guess if you can't get a fire pit war dance a long grueling slog is the next best thing.

Ambrey
Sep. 8, 2009, 11:38 PM
:lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol: :lol:

She's 12 ;) And that was seriously the funniest post I've ever read.

Whisper
Sep. 9, 2009, 12:33 AM
In addition, on the longe, the rider can ride without reins to develop the seat without interference with the hands. We haven't talked much about the leverage of having both sidereins and bridle reins in the rider's hands. The sidereins exert a pull down and back if the horse raises his head. The rider's hands might exert a pull anywhere, including back and UP if she loses her balance. This can a very large conflict of cues.
It's interesting - only two of the dressage instructors I've taken longe lessons with had me knot the reins up on the neck and used sidereins. Most had me keep the reins and sometimes even actively steer. In my vaulting lessons, we have no reins at all - just the sidereins (http://www.flickr.com/photos/82782698@N00/3722127520) and longe line (http://www.flickr.com/photos/82782698@N00/2813111666). One of the horses I ride will essentially self-longe (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alY7f4_OueI) with the reins knotted up on his neck while I do arm exercises (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8J_BfFChiYQ) at W/T/C. If he starts to fall in or out on the circle, I can touch his neck with one finger to get him back on track (of course, we only do this if we're the only ones in the arena). It seems a little odd that relatively few dressage horses are trained to longe with a rider while under the control of the longeur.

I've seen a few lessons where the horses were *jumping* in side reins (off the longe, with a rider). It seemed very unsafe, especially if they were loose enough to allow the horse to use its neck.

ThreeFigs
Sep. 9, 2009, 12:55 AM
Thank you Narcisco, for a very clear explanation. Works for me!

Who ARE these people who want to ride their horses around in side reins, anyway?

mademoiselle
Sep. 9, 2009, 01:08 AM
Ok Ambrey,
It makes sense that you trust your trainer more than a group of strangers on the internet, and I also understand that you feel that your daughter and the pony are making progress, therefore, you think that your trainer is doing a good job.

But in a little while, you are going to realize that some of us were right ... Give it some time, maybe go and take a clinic with a BNT and you might change your point of view.

When I was still a trainer, I gave a lessons to a 'small' 12 Yo girl and a fresh 4 YO TB off the track. Don't ask me why her parents got her that horse, that's what I had to work with. Before riding the TB, she was doing 4H stuff on dead quiet push button QH (a baby sitter deluxe).
Well, here are the steps that were taken to make it successful :
- They put the horse in full training for 3 months. The kid would only ride the horse 20 mn twice a week at the end of my training rides, the rest of the time it was just me on the horse.
- She got a bunch of lessons on some other schooled horses.
- The first couple of rides happened in a small space (60 by 80 feet type of arena).
- She always longed him 20 mn before getting on, to get his mind working and get whatever out of his system - lots of transitions, changing the size of the circles, no running around like an idiot).
He was ridden in a snaffle, with a regular cavesson and no other gadgets.
After a year, she was winning schooling shows at training level with scores in the mid 60s and high 60s.
She learned how to sit a buck, and she learned how to feel things without all the gadgets.

Kids can ride and feel like any adults. They can learn the proper way right away, if they have a good teacher. And 'tack' is not the answer for everything. I can tell you that I could take your daughter and her pony and have them doing well at training level in a couple of months with a snaffle. It is not rocket science :confused:

I don't buy the she needs to work on her seat and legs and later she will work on her hands ... A big part of learning how to ride is to deal with all your body parts and all your horse's body parts at once and trust me the higher you go up the levels, the more things you have to think about.

Here is the video to prove my point, the kid is 6YO, she is Ingrid Klimke's daughter, so she got a good instruction and she is riding a trained horse :
http://www.cmetube.de/gretagrandprix

As far as riding in side reins, I really don't get it. I mean if you are going to 'set' the head then use the proper gadget and have your daughter riding in draw reins.
Side reins = longing
draw reins = riding

Not that I would advocate a 12 YO riding in draw reins, but ...

As far as the pelham, are you sure you are not seing dressage people riding in a double bridle ? Because, as other said, there is no way, a FEI rider would train one of their horses in a pelham. Now, if the FEI trainer was giving a lesson to a jumper rider and got on the horse to show something or to warm him up, then a dressage rider could be seen riding in a pelham, but as a training tool for 'upper level' dressage : NO ... NO WAY.

My advice would be to try to go to see some pony club people in your area, it might be a good place for you and your daughter to meet some people and to learn some things :yes:

And the last thing, for the horse you might want to look into :
http://www.horsetackco.com/tongue-bit.html?currency=USD
http://www.horsetackco.com/juba-port.html
http://www.shop4bits.com/item--Closed-Spoon-Tongue-Bit--closed-spoon-tongue-bit.html

At least those are snaffle and it means that you don't have to get a tight flash on the horse.

By putting the side reins on a pelham you are applying a lot of pressure on the tongue, which means that your horse has no option but try to flip it over the bit or over react when your kid puts pressure on the reins.
Now, that he has learned how to do that, it will take time to show him that he will not be in pain.
The combo Side Reins/Pelham is the worst you can find to fix the tongue problem.

I know you will not listen to me, so all I can say is good luck.

mademoiselle
Sep. 9, 2009, 01:11 AM
Oh my god, I just pulled a SLC :lol::lol::lol:

It's contagious ...:winkgrin:

I can't believe I posted that long of a reply

ThreeFigs
Sep. 9, 2009, 01:16 AM
It's OK, mademoiselle, ya done good!

Coppers mom
Sep. 9, 2009, 01:49 AM
So 11 pages later let me see if I have it straight.

1. Some feel it important to make a concerted effort to win one for the anti-side rein team and shame Ambrey into reconsidering her nefarious ways; perhaps she will flounce out of her pelham-using trainer's establishment; certainly if we have done our job properly she will realize how much she sucks and feel terrible about both her horsemanship and her parenting and possibly even her very existence on the planet and wouldn't it be great if we could get her to cry in the corner. Additional points if you can get anyone else who has ever used side reins in the past or even considered it to feel terrible about their horsemanship, cry in a corner, and give up riding altogether.

2. Ambrey is inconsiderately refusing to cry (if she just would this would all be over as group 1. could feel smugly victorious and beat their chests doing the war dance around the fire pit to celebrate the thrill of the kill), thinks the pelham is fine with however many sidereins attached to whatever piece of the blasted pelham, doesn't appear to be leaving her trainer anytime soon, will carry on regardless, and really the pony is not going to be scarred emotionally and Ambrey's get oh wait I'm sorry her produce is highly unlikely to die and probably if we really consider it reasonably everyone is having a fine and dandy experience either way and honestly does the world have to spin itself into a froth over when some 8(ish?) year old is "correctly" learning the fundamentals of dressage.

Either way it seems that Group 1 is not going to get their chest beating fire pit war dance celebration no matter how fervently or stridently they try because Group 2 just isn't going to a.) cry, b.) take off the side reins, c.) sell the pony, or even d.) FEEL REMORSE (and by golly she should FEEL TERRIBLE Y/Y??!!) about not doing a.), b.), or c.). Group 1 appears to have strayed from any other purpose other than trying to make Group 2 cry, which is tiresome in itself but especially special considering a young child is involved.

Hope has long been given up by both sides of ever coming back to a reasonable or even incrementally respectful/productive discussion so Group 1 digs in trying to get in their last best pithy comments and Group 2 blithely carries on.

I guess if you can't get a fire pit war dance a long grueling slog is the next best thing.

:lol::lol::lol:

This is probably the best assessment of this thread anyone could have written. Nicely proven by "Ugh, well, one day, you'll learn that we're right (and then feel like a horrible, awful, worthless horsewoman and parent)".

lewin
Sep. 9, 2009, 02:37 AM
As the only other person in this thread who has actually worked with the pony in question before.....

He is not dangerous in any way. If he was I would strongly advocate selling him. Even if he startles a tug on the reins will stop him. If you accidentally give him a strong aid he will speed up or change gait but he is easily brought back.

He is difficult getting a correct contact. He does what some of the arabs I rode in the past did where he will go easily into a false frame but if you try and push him from behind, over his back, and into the contact he tends to then invert and/or get tense. It is probably easier to correct the inversion habit with the pelham; I worked with him in a snaffle.

Ambrey's daughter is a lovely child who is in no way being pushed toward dressage or this pony. I occasionally ask the "are you sure you don't want to jump?" question and she is enjoying her lessons. I have ridden with her and she is a better rider every time I see her.

goeslikestink
Sep. 9, 2009, 03:39 AM
Oh my god, I justed pulled a SLC :lol::lol::lol:

It's contagious ...:winkgrin:

I can't believe I posted that long of a reply

done a good job matey

goeslikestink
Sep. 9, 2009, 03:50 AM
As the only other person in this thread who has actually worked with the pony in question before.....

He is not dangerous in any way. If he was I would strongly advocate selling him. Even if he startles a tug on the reins will stop him. If you accidentally give him a strong aid he will speed up or change gait but he is easily brought back.

He is difficult getting a correct contact. He does what some of the arabs I rode in the past did where he will go easily into a false frame but if you try and push him from behind, over his back, and into the contact he tends to then invert and/or get tense. It is probably easier to correct the inversion habit with the pelham; I worked with him in a snaffle.

Ambrey's daughter is a lovely child who is in no way being pushed toward dressage or this pony. I occasionally ask the "are you sure you don't want to jump?" question and she is enjoying her lessons. I have ridden with her and she is a better rider every time I see her.


pay perrticular attention to your own words ------- he is difficult getting a correct contact...

put that together with a green light weight rider and add gadgets something bad will happen if not now at some point .. i hope you might not have to pay towards a huge vet/hospital bill for ambrey daughter as we know shes young and delightful

some people think we are against ambrey and having a go at her its not that at all it becuase we care we are pointing out how dangerous it can be for an inexpreience person be that child or adult bottom line is to be safe
and this isnt being safe with your horse its putting someone in a potential dangerous position be that a child or adult in this case its a child

and a child of 12 is all innocent and learning and its up to the parent and those responisble for her well being in keeping her safe at all times
of which she not as she sometimes is unsupervised riding in side reins and shes on a horse that as you stated is difficult to get the contact
if one has no contact one has no control of the horse or pony -- thats unsafe
and add gadgets its an accident waiting to happen --

like i said one say she wil hit the dirt and one can ignore as much as you like or want to but how much do you all value this childs life to put her at such a risk

stick a fork in me i am done

goeslikestink
Sep. 9, 2009, 03:57 AM
So 11 pages later let me see if I have it straight.

1. Some feel it important to make a concerted effort to win one for the anti-side rein team and shame Ambrey into reconsidering her nefarious ways; perhaps she will flounce out of her pelham-using trainer's establishment; certainly if we have done our job properly she will realize how much she sucks and feel terrible about both her horsemanship and her parenting and possibly even her very existence on the planet and wouldn't it be great if we could get her to cry in the corner. Additional points if you can get anyone else who has ever used side reins in the past or even considered it to feel terrible about their horsemanship, cry in a corner, and give up riding altogether.

2. Ambrey is inconsiderately refusing to cry (if she just would this would all be over as group 1. could feel smugly victorious and beat their chests doing the war dance around the fire pit to celebrate the thrill of the kill), thinks the pelham is fine with however many sidereins attached to whatever piece of the blasted pelham, doesn't appear to be leaving her trainer anytime soon, will carry on regardless, and really the pony is not going to be scarred emotionally and Ambrey's get oh wait I'm sorry her produce is highly unlikely to die and probably if we really consider it reasonably everyone is having a fine and dandy experience either way and honestly does the world have to spin itself into a froth over when some 8(ish?) year old is "correctly" learning the fundamentals of dressage.

Either way it seems that Group 1 is not going to get their chest beating fire pit war dance celebration no matter how fervently or stridently they try because Group 2 just isn't going to a.) cry, b.) take off the side reins, c.) sell the pony, or even d.) FEEL REMORSE (and by golly she should FEEL TERRIBLE Y/Y??!!) about not doing a.), b.), or c.). Group 1 appears to have strayed from any other purpose other than trying to make Group 2 cry, which is tiresome in itself but especially special considering a young child is involved.

Hope has long been given up by both sides of ever coming back to a reasonable or even incrementally respectful/productive discussion so Group 1 digs in trying to get in their last best pithy comments and Group 2 blithely carries on.

I guess if you can't get a fire pit war dance a long grueling slog is the next best thing.


guess your missing the point riding is a risky sport for anyone but one would want to be as safe as they can whilse doing it

and being safe is the main point here

AnotherRound
Sep. 9, 2009, 06:00 AM
Meh, I don't think its safety she cares about. Some people will see "meanies" every time someone objects to what they are doing. There are those who want to be patted on the back and rack up friends and support and there are those who want to think about why they do or don't do things for their riding and horses. Most people can do both at the same time! Others see only "friends" and "Meanies" when they go about their lives.

I agree, Stinks, some folks here are missing the point - no matter what anyone says, the horse is sorely, poorly and unfortunately rigged up, and clamping him down over his admitted discomfort with that rig is bad news. Just because he has tolerated so far it doesn't mean he will continue to, and it doesn't mean he will learn to be ridden well this way. Its an unfortunate thing, just because everyone who is around the horse likes it and likes how he does with it doesn't make it optimal or smart or correct or productive. Its sad, and those of us who see it and have some experience with training such horses productively can't help but hope Ambrey will one day decide that defensiveness for the sake of appearance is destructive and affects her children and horses too. An open mind and a desire to learn and improve goes alot further - in good riding and making friends.

AnotherRound
Sep. 9, 2009, 06:21 AM
:lol::lol::lol:

This is probably the most best assessment of this thread anyone could have written. Nicely proven by "Ugh, well, one day, you'll learn that we're right (and then feel like a horrible, awful, worthless horsewoman and parent)".

No. YOU don't get it. What becomes apparent with this one poster in particular with all her problems she posts about is that all the problems she has with the horses, she is looking for a fix: A gaget, a technique. I was thinking about the gaping thing she described as a big part of the problem with the horse. I have ridden horses who gaped at the mouth like she describes, and the solution was to change what they expected during the ring work, either with my riding or the equipment I was using; different for each animal, of course, but work to find SOMETHING; the horse pulls, gapes, perhaps I let loose my hands so he has nothing to gape against. Over and over, a horse is asked with my seat and legs to work, the hands are light, to move into the bit, he gapes, the hands are gone and he can't pull down on you, or, cant' pull back on you, gaping, there's no hand/bit there to gape against. This is after the bit is correct, which she admittedly has 't worked on either. Its frustrating work, and you work on it for several months before you see the end of it, but you work, changing how the horse moves, his back strength, how he responds to hands, you get nothing done but working on the gaping stuff, but its like the one poster in the bit thread, maybe you work in hand, or find some aspect of work which takes time and patience and skill, but it works. Thing is, she won't work on it, she looks for a solution, tie his mouth shut, tie him down if his head comes up. That's a foolish way to handle her horse. Her trainer must just do it to make her happy. Its frustrating to see someone go on and on saying "I tried that, I can't do it, it doesnt work, I handed it over to the trainer and that satisfies me" when she herself hasn't tried anything, she handed it over to the trainer and that satisfies her. Its not how you work on your horses, Copper, I warrant, not how I or so many other hard working folks on the board work on problems with their horses and she blithely pooh pooh's basic training for rigging the horse to its gills, and no, thinking horsemen are not patting her on her back and saying 'there there, you are doing your best, what a brave trooper' when she isn't. Either doing her best, nor a brave trooper. Sneer if you like, but horses aren't about making people feel good. Horses are about work and yes, one day we all hope that Ambrey's lightbulb will go off about that, since she saturates this board with so much of herself.

angel
Sep. 9, 2009, 06:22 AM
Ambrey...I was looking at the first photo, and seeing something at the corner of the horse's mouth. At first look, I thought it was his tongue. But, I went back and looked again, and now, I wonder if that is somekind of equipment/attachment that I am seeing. Forgive me, if I got it wrong, and enlighten me as to what I am seeing.

But, no matter what the equipment it might be, the sidereins are attached too short, and too low. I would have never allowed my daughter to ride in sidereins without a knowledgeable lunge person holding a lungeline on the horse, and even that is no guarantee there cannot be a problem. The reason that I do not like to see a rider ride with sidereins is that there is no quick release. That is dangerous enough with an adult, but with a young person, such as your daughter, her legs are not long enough to really drive the horse forward out of a rear.

Most of the time, we, as riders are way lucky that our horses are the kind, gentle souls they are. But, I have always tried to be about safety before training...both for the horse and the rider. As the results, my opinion about riding in sidereins has nothing to do with whatever they do in Europe, or anywhere else. It has to do with the possibilities of what can happen, that I do not want to see happen.

As to the pelham...well, it is not dressage equipment. It is used for saddle seat (or hunter/jumper), and there is nothing wrong with your daughter learning saddleseat. However, if she is going for saddleseat, she needs a flat saddle (or forward seat saddle if hunter/jumper), as the balance is different than on a dressage saddle. Because her equipment is partially dressage, and partially saddleseat, her riding skills are neither fish nor fowl. She is not learning either discipline correctly.

slc2
Sep. 9, 2009, 06:37 AM
Never seen a pelham used for saddle seat. Always a snaffle or double bridle. The pelham, I see on hunt seat horses. In many decades in dressage, I have never seen a dressage trainer put a pelham bit on a horse.

Those who are in riding divisions that allow a large variety of bits tend to switch to a different bit when they have a problem. The pelham is a 'grab bit', in other words, people 'grab' it when they have a problem. Usually, the rider can't get the horse to give when they pull on the rein. They pull, the horse pulls back. Out comes the pelham bit. The preferred bit to see a hunter in is a snaffle. If the hunter judge sees a horse in a pelham, the horse might not place as well as he would were he clocking around rhythmically with a snaffle and very little effort from the rider to maintain a steady, desirable speed. Sometimes a hunter will get schooled in a pelham to back him off the bit and get shown in a snaffle if he will stay backed off for the duration of the show.

mademoiselle
Sep. 9, 2009, 07:28 AM
He is difficult getting a correct contact. He does what some of the arabs I rode in the past did where he will go easily into a false frame but if you try and push him from behind, over his back, and into the contact he tends to then invert and/or get tense.

And the trainer wants to correct that by using side reins with a pelham ? :eek::eek::eek:
Seriously ?:confused:
I mean do you realize what the action of the side reins is ?
And do you realize what the action of the pelham is ?

If you are riding with sidereins, your horse has 2 places to go : resisting against the side reins, or ducking behind the vertical ... And if they are longer, so he can actually poke his nose in front of the vertical - like a hunter horse during the hack- then the side reins are useless and don't serve any purpose.
So, if the horse goes in a - fake frame - riding him in side reins is just going to reinforce that tendency.

The pelham is going to put some 'poll' and 'bar' pressure because of the curb. So the immediate effect is going to close the angle head/neck. Which is going to reinforce the - fake frame syndrom.

If this horse is that tricky to get going in a correct frame - and some horses are - then no way the kid is going to fix it. You can go to buy half of the tack shop bits, chambon, draw reins, german martingale inventory, the only way to fix that bad habit is going to have a padded bank account to pay for months of training with a very qualified dressage trainer.

I started a 3 YO stallion, 3 years ago, he is currently winning with high 70s at 1st level and guess what, I'm still struggling with teaching him to accept the contact. That's our #1 problem. He goes in a beautiful -false frame- but getting him to push from behind, lift his back and have a nice consitent contact is what I have to work on everyday.
This is no kid's job :no:. A horse that doesn't accept the bit (tongue over the bit and ineverting himself are red flags) is not something to bring along for a green rider. It's hard enough to learn how to ride dressage on a horse that has sound training, forget about one that has some issues.:(

Ghazzu
Sep. 9, 2009, 07:59 AM
So 11 pages later let me see if I have it straight.



You left out #3.

Some of us are concerned for the horse.

Ghazzu
Sep. 9, 2009, 08:10 AM
Never seen a pelham used for saddle seat.


I've seen it occasionally on the Arab show circuit in the Country English Pleasure classes.

meupatdoes
Sep. 9, 2009, 08:47 AM
Some people will see "meanies" every time someone objects to what they are doing. There are those who want to be patted on the back and rack up friends and support and there are those who want to think about why they do or don't do things for their riding and horses. Most people can do both at the same time! Others see only "friends" and "Meanies" when they go about their lives.

If it's me you are talking about here, that is pretty hilarious.

As for GLS, while on occasion she makes good points, I have yet to see them phrased constructively. With her it is always, "Listen matey what I see is a novice rider with no clue about contact and the pictures show the horse diving on the forehand the horse must use himself properly he will never be balanced that way look at my helpful links page if you would like to have hope of ever emerging from your Mire of Fail."

And Ghazzu, sure, be concerned for the horse.
What do you think, at this point, your concern is actually accomplishing? What are you hoping Ambrey will do as a result of all of this obnoxious finger wagging concern?
Cry?
Take off the side reins?
Leave the trainer?
At least feel some G.D. REMORSE already?

Because I think it pretty clearly moved on from "concern for the horse" long ago. It is pretty obvious that nobody expects or even believes that Ambrey is going to do any of the above, so all of this continued posting must be inspired for some other reason.

I mean, what do you actually expect her to do? What would make you all happy?
Do you think if you just hammer your opinion enough and zingily enough and convince her how much she sucks enough and how bad the sidereins are enough then all of a sudden she will say, "You know. Now I am crying. Now I will switch bits. Now I will feel terrible about having used sidereins. Now I will sell this pony and buy something else. Thank God they stuck with it, I once was blind now I see!"
Hey, perhaps if one of you comes up with the absolute KILLER of all comments, it'll happen. You just have to do it enough.

HighFlyinBey++
Sep. 9, 2009, 08:56 AM
I've seen it occasionally on the Arab show circuit in the Country English Pleasure classes.

It's also legal in Show Hack and Hunter under Saddle, which is why I relied on the pelham's quick fix of a false frame. After several years off, Bailey is now going well in a snaffle. He remembers what he was taught, but doesn't need the hardware.

I'm in Group 4: those who get suckered by trying to solve a problem only to realize the person with the problem isn't interested in a solution, just attention. I'm so very sorry I took a certain poster off ignore for even one afternoon. All it gave me was a headache.

hitchinmygetalong
Sep. 9, 2009, 09:02 AM
I think the bottom line here is that many posters have serious questions about the methods being used BY THE TRAINER. And since I'm sure the trainer has loads more fun things to do than post on Chronicle, those questions will forever remain unanswered. Frustrating, but there is nothing to be done for it.

Still, it's been very educational.

I have concluded that I would never ride in side reins. Nor would I ever ride a horse in a pelham as I don't have an educated enough "touch" to not end up abusing the horse's mouth, which I think can happen very easily if the rider does not have a true understanding of the mechanics of the bit. But that's another subject for another day.

Valentina_32926
Sep. 9, 2009, 09:03 AM
I've heard that a local trainer uses side reins on a horse in a lesson - kid ended up with having MAJOR spine surgery when horse flipped. :mad:

That's why riding with side reins is not safe. If the SRS does it take in mind they are all expert riders and should be able to drive the horse forward into the reins, not all horses /riders can do so when the horse is resisting. :no:

lovehors86
Sep. 9, 2009, 09:09 AM
OK I use side reins on a daily basis and on my horse with a decent rider I might put them on while they are riding to teach the rider what it feels like for the horse to be connected, however....

My trainer always warned against side reins because they have a habit of disconnecting a horse if you use them improperly or aren't paying attention close enough, not to mention they can be dangerous...

First off if you are riding, and I don't know what level you are at but generally people begin using sidereins to teach a horse to flex and soften on the lunge to light pressure, well at that point the horse is not going to be able to carry themselves for very long and sidereins do not allow them to stretch unlike a rider's hand so they will get tired and sore backed often times...

Secondly, when a horse is not being driven up by rider or lunger side reins do nothing more than teach a horse how to make his head pretty so the reins stop pressure and now you have a horse with a "headset" instead of one who is moving through... hence why a lot of horses duck behind the verticle in side reins, they turn into a bouncy ball of goo...

just my opinion though...

Ambrey
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:22 AM
Ambrey...I was looking at the first photo, and seeing something at the corner of the horse's mouth. At first look, I thought it was his tongue. But, I went back and looked again, and now, I wonder if that is somekind of equipment/attachment that I am seeing. Forgive me, if I got it wrong, and enlighten me as to what I am seeing.

Oh, yes I see. That's the elastic from the side reins. No tongue :)

In the photos you see, my trainer is RIGHT THERE the entire time, with his eyes on her. And he did NOT allow her off of the longe line until he was confident that she could manage issues on her own. They are doing various exercises that allow her to develop her seat, but now they are also moving on to increasing and decreasing flexion and bend so that they can eliminate the side reins.

I am betting if you chatted with my trainer about it, you'd have a much different picture of what's going on. You're hearing all of this secondhand, and I'm not really that much of a words person (yes, I USE a lot of them, but I don't always put them together in the most effective way!).

But I'm bummed that the side reins are too short, because this is like pair 575 and they are all either too short or too long. I thought these were working when we fiddled with them a bit. When I went back and looked at all of the photos, I decided you were correct.

Soapey Sponge
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:23 AM
Why shouldn’t people carry on with this thread? It's a great demonstration of the power of willful ignorance. There are basically only two viewpoints being proposed here. It’s like, what? The opinion of 50 educated professionals versus 1 neophyte with a backyard trainer. Actuarially speaking, who’s more likely to be right here?

And yet – the aggregate decades of experienced horsemanship, the paragraphs upon paragraphs of reasoned argument fall on deaf ears. When logic is rejected outright there is no potential for meaningful discussion. This is what happens when people get comfortable making up their own versions of reality.

I’m not sure why this and other brands of fantasy are so prevalent on the Dressage board. Sometimes it seems like there’s a rule of inverse relation in play here – the less you have actually experienced, the more you post. There are some fantastic posters with a wealth of real knowledge to share, but their contributions tend to get lost in the mix. Every time I drop in here to read I feel like I’ve gone through Alice’s looking glass. Pelhams are good dressage bits! Side reins will fix a “false frame!” Weird, because most of the regular posters on other boards – eventing for example – are genuinely knowledgable competitors who speak from a well of valuable experience. What’s up with that?

Ghazzu
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:26 AM
And Ghazzu, sure, be concerned for the horse.
What do you think, at this point, your concern is actually accomplishing? What are you hoping Ambrey will do as a result of all of this obnoxious finger wagging concern?
.


Me? I'm hoping she'll put a freakin' snalffle that fits the horse in his mouth and get rid of the damn flash.

Hey, I can dream, can't I?

Alternatively, I can face "reality" and just ignore the whole unpleasantness, I suppose.

grayarabpony
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:27 AM
Haven't read the whole thread, but madamoiselle gave excellent advice.

Ambrey
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:38 AM
And the trainer wants to correct that by using side reins with a pelham ? :eek::eek::eek:
Seriously ?:confused:
I mean do you realize what the action of the side reins is ?
And do you realize what the action of the pelham is ?:(

It spreads pressure over the tongue and bars, the curb, and the poll. For a horse with a very sensitive mouth, if used with a light hand, it can help decrease the reaction to mouth pressure. The poll pressure encourages the head down. The pelham is my trainer's "gadget of choice," and he has his own ways of using it. There is absolutely no way I'd even try to convince you that it's conventional :winkgrin:

I am not sure how many times I can say that the side reins are not intended to correct anything or be a training tool for the pony. They are a tool to allow them to work on her seat without dealing with his fussy head. Of course, his head is becoming much less fussy now, so my daughter and the pony will meet in the middle somewhere. He is now fairly easy to bring on the bit and offers to stretch down, takes the leg nicely, and can be kept in a steady tempo with seat control. Big improvement :)

Sure, if the goal was to advance in dressage, this would be absolutely the wrong horse. However, the goal is to have fun with THIS horse. And to learn to ride THIS horse. He is not dangerous, but he is also not easy to ride well. When we purchased a horse, my daughter had no interest in dressage at all and that wasn't really the goal (I did, so I liked that he had dressage training!). He's a cute jumper and a great all around little guy. My daughter is taking a tough path with him. Will they succeed? Will they fail? Stay tuned for further adventures :)

Ambrey
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:43 AM
Why shouldn’t people carry on with this thread? It's a great demonstration of the power of willful ignorance. There are basically only two viewpoints being proposed here. It’s like, what? The opinion of 50 educated professionals versus 1 neophyte with a backyard trainer. Actuarially speaking, who’s more likely to be right here?


My trainer is hardly a backyard trainer. He is a hunter, jumper, and dressage ("combined") trainer who has been in the business for 40 years.

I see the situation much more as "educated professionals who have actually met the horse and rider in question vs. those who haven't" I'm going with the former ;)

mp
Sep. 9, 2009, 10:47 AM
As the only other person in this thread who has actually worked with the pony in question before.....

He is not dangerous in any way. If he was I would strongly advocate selling him. Even if he startles a tug on the reins will stop him. If you accidentally give him a strong aid he will speed up or change gait but he is easily brought back.

He is difficult getting a correct contact. He does what some of the arabs I rode in the past did where he will go easily into a false frame but if you try and push him from behind, over his back, and into the contact he tends to then invert and/or get tense. It is probably easier to correct the inversion habit with the pelham; I worked with him in a snaffle.

Ambrey's daughter is a lovely child who is in no way being pushed toward dressage or this pony. I occasionally ask the "are you sure you don't want to jump?" question and she is enjoying her lessons. I have ridden with her and she is a better rider every time I see her.

I'm really glad hear that the little girl is riding better and enjoying her horse. I just wish the horse would have the opportunity to enjoy his job more. Because being trussed up like that can't be a good time for him.

A horse doesn't have to be dangerous to be inappropriate for his rider. And I really think that's the case here. Add in a trainer who is willing to take shortcuts, and that's just not a happy situation for the horse.

I suspect you know that a stronger bit, side reins and tying the horse's mouth shut only masks the inversion/evasion issue. I do because I ride one of those Arabians who is an expert at going in a false frame. I've been working on it with him for two years. TWO YEARS. And he's finally releasing his back, coming through and stretching for the bit. How much progress has this horse made in that time? That's about how long he's been decked out in all that stuff, isn't it?

mademoiselle is correct -- working on an issue like this is not a job for a kid. If I didn't have a very patient, persistent trainer who would rather tie ME up than hog tie my horse or take any shortcut, I would have thrown in the towel a along time ago.

The fact that this very tolerant horse has put up with this for so long speaks volumes about the forgiving nature of equines. It doesn't, however, say much for the trainer.

Ambrey
Sep. 9, 2009, 11:17 AM
The horse gets plenty of opportunity to enjoy his job. Besides their one weekly lesson in which he has to go in side reins (oh noes!), they ride several times a week, they longe (only about half the time in tack- often she "free longes" him, as he's very good off verbal cues), toodle around the barn, take baths, spend hours on grooming, and in general just do what girls and horses do.