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Bluehorsesjp
Oct. 30, 2011, 01:44 AM
This is a conversation a friend and I had the other day.
My best jumpers have always been extraordinary buckers in their turnouts. They would play and almost stand vertically on their front feet. You would stand amazed that you ever sat on their backs safely.

My new 4 year old OTTB never bucks. He will squeal and scoot, but no buck. Conformationally, he has a great shoulder, get hip. But no buck.


Is there any truth to the theory that a horse that bucks well is more athletic?

Horseshowaddict
Oct. 30, 2011, 06:52 AM
I have also found that the ones that really buck and twist and leap are WBs. The QH's and TB are my runners, with the occasional kick up/buck thrown in there. :) All of the horses observed were very good jumpers, and good at their jobs.

Outfxed
Oct. 30, 2011, 07:09 AM
The 2 QHs that I have owned could out buck any TB I've ever seen but I don't think they were any more or less athletic. They both definitely were scopey, well balanced horses with great work ethics and I'm thankful neither one of them pulled those moves when I was on their back! :eek:

Vesper Sparrow
Oct. 30, 2011, 08:27 AM
The three TBs I have owned or leased have all been proficient buckers in the field so I think the claimed differences between breeds are mostly anectotal in nature. Heck, when my TB mare was 25 she could still stand almost vertically on her front legs and buck. My TB gelding is a great bucker, caprioler (leap in the air then buck) and rearer.

supaflyskye
Oct. 30, 2011, 08:32 AM
Just because a horse doesn't make bucking one of his regular turnout activities doesn't mean he can't. Perhaps not all horses hugely enjoy bucking.
My horse runs and plays in turnout but I veryvery rarely ever see him give any stand-on-his-head bucks, just little running bucks and leaps. He has, as far as I've seen, had dramatic instances of bucking in turnout all of twice, but those times were impressive! :lol: So I know he could if he wanted to. I don't mind him not being "a bucker." He has never once bucked under saddle in his entire life.
I don't necessarily know how much credence I would give to that old tale, anyway. I wouldn't worry about your youngster's athleticism just over that.

netg
Oct. 30, 2011, 09:37 AM
The least athletic horse I've ever owned was the most impressive bucker... whether in turnout or under saddle.

My TB doesn't buck a lot, but he can do a handstand at a full gallop (I don't understand how he stays upright and keeps galloping after!) so definitely shows athleticism there. My crippled, only-three-legs-bend, rescue mare is a MASSIVE bucker. Maybe she would be athletic if all three legs worked properly, but she definitely isn't so athletic now...

NancyM
Oct. 30, 2011, 09:46 AM
There is an old saying that says, "if a horse can really buck, he can really jump". Dunno if it is true, but I've heard it for a long time. Another comment from a trainer whom I hold some respect for is that if a horse plays with other horses using his front legs by throwing them forward, boxing with them, it's a sign that he's going to use his shoulders when jumping. Indicates freedom in the shoulders.

I think that a horse who can really buck has lots of power behind. But there may be other reasons why he bucks that are not as useful or helpful in a jumping career. Mental reasons, or physical reasons.

ballisticgirl
Oct. 30, 2011, 09:46 AM
My warmblood baby bucks all the time, on the longe line, when out to pasture and *sigh* when under saddle. Good times.

goodmorning
Oct. 30, 2011, 10:06 AM
My tb that raced doesn't usually buck - he sort of leaps & bounds, legs flying in all directions. When he does buck, its usually giant, but he'd much rather gallop & bounce around. This horse has a great jump & is not afraid to show off his jumper-esque tail-flipping abilities ;) TheTB that didn't race will buck at any given moment, but then again, her turnout antics are :eek: haven't jumped that one enough to see what she does with her hind-end...

findeight
Oct. 30, 2011, 10:43 AM
The best and most athletic bucker I ever was on (and off rather regularly) was a total cow over a fence and a miserable ride overall. The least likely to buck-as in never-was a former World Cup horse (for another nation) still doing the Junior Jumpers (4'6"ish). Don't recall either of these doing anything at all on turnout other then stuff themselves or find some mud to wallow in.

Thing is, you can't compare turnout behavior unless all things are equal. It is not an indicator. They have to be on the same work schedual, same feeding program, in the same size and type turnout for the same amount of time to draw any conclusions at all. The most athletic and talented jumper in the world in regular work turned out 6 hours a day on 2 acres is not going to do much. While the totally phlegmatic klutz you have to beat to get to move cooped up 4 days a week is going to act like a loon running around a 1/2 acre dry lot.

It is probably true that the some competitive, high performance horses are going to express themselves with equal energy when they disagree with the rider or just are eager to get out and go to work. That means they may be more likely to buck under saddle-and buck well if they really uncork one.

But I have heard that as an excuse for bad behavior way to often. Bucking under saddle is bad manners and should never be excused as "talent". Certainly no predictor of show ring success-not all good buckers are exceptional show horses and not all exceptional show horses are good buckers...or buck at all.

Throw the fact that bucking can be, and often is, a pain response and it really makes any generalizations impossible.

ballisticgirl
Oct. 30, 2011, 10:50 AM
What would you say about the bucking last night at WIHS?

I saw a lot of it and fences were being knocked down and the rounds delayed, what can be said about this?

From what I could see, it appeared some of the behavior was encouraged as in the riders didn't get after the horse when bucking repeatedly.

I always get after my boy. I don't think it is fun to ride a bucker! Not in the least.

findeight
Oct. 30, 2011, 11:20 AM
What would you say about the bucking last night at WIHS?

I saw a lot of it and fences were being knocked down and the rounds delayed, what can be said about this?

From what I could see, it appeared some of the behavior was encouraged as in the riders didn't get after the horse when bucking repeatedly.

I always get after my boy. I don't think it is fun to ride a bucker! Not in the least.

Major winter storm and high winds outside. Postage stamp sized warm up. Limited time in main ring at weird hours. No turn out.
Welcome to Indoors.

That's exactly why bucking cannot be tolerated or excused. You might cut them a little slack because of the above conditions, but it should be dealt with. Of course some of the riders may be in over their heads and are afraid to deal with it for fear it will get worse-and it probably would. I can understand that.

All you can do is never let it get started when you have more control over the circumstances-the horse thinks it's OK and even fun once in awhile at home or at a show on a nice day? They will really come uncorked when they encounter challenging stuations like this and think it's OK because that is what they have learned.

CiegoStar
Oct. 30, 2011, 11:27 AM
I would not "get after" my horse for bucking before starting a jumper round at a show in front of thousands of people. You don't start a fight with your horse in those circumstances. THAT would be bad form, IMHO.

The riders rode through it gracefully, and that's the best you can ask for.

Pony+ an inch
Oct. 30, 2011, 11:51 AM
Speaking from personal experience, the last thing you want to do is discipline a bucking horse right before you ask them to go and perform. Most horses tend to get wound up about discipline, beit for a refusal or for bucking or whatever, and that anxiety can translate into poor performance if they're still dwelling on it going down to the first fence. Far better just to sit deep and ride through it to the first fence because then at that point, chances are the horse's attention will completely switch to the big fence it's being pointed at (which is what happened in last night's GP).

When my junior hunter was a baby, he was an extraordinarily enthusiastic and athletic bucker. It was certainly not a daily occurrence, thank heavens, and he never did it maliciously under saddle. But if he got bored (which happened with lower fences) or didn't like how the round was going ie one too many pilot errors, he let you know about it. He also let you know if thought he'd done a particularly spectacular job that round. He also let you know if it was cold outside. All that said, he was/is a phenomenal jumper. When he was on and I didn't screw up, he won hands down.

With him, it took me awhile to learn it was better to ignore and just leg him through it and keep him working and NOT pull him up or worry about where his head was which was my gut instinct. Once he grew up a bit more and realized his "call for attention" wasn't getting him anywhere and I started riding him better, it pretty much disappeared. With him it was a matter of not making a mountain over a molehill. If I did that, the problem was just further exacerbated.

Silk
Oct. 30, 2011, 11:57 AM
There is an old saying that says, "if a horse can really buck, he can really jump". .

We have a 12.2 HH hackney pony who does the pony jumpers. That pony can jump anything from any distance and is THE MOST athletic pony I have ever seen. He is catlike, quick and can literally right himself in any situation. That said, the darn little guy just never mastered bucking - lol. He tries but cant seem to get the correct movement down...ends up doing these little rocking horse movements. We always laugh at him becasue of it. Now, he can drop out from under you in a massive spook and lose you that way.

BeeHoney
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:00 PM
Like others, I've certainly heard it said that horses that can really buck are often good jumpers. IMO, there's not a whole lot of merit to this except that sure, very athletic horses can indeed show off a little more when they are turned out, but not exclusively bucking.

I've always secretly thought that people have it a little backwards and that the truth is more along the lines of the only reason anyone would put up with a a bucker is if they had some special quality--like a great jump.

Madeline
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:00 PM
We have 4 TB's. The one who can turn himself inside out bucking has the least power/scope of the bunch. Two hardly ever buck and it isn't an issue. The one with all the scope in the world slap-you-in-the-seat-of-the pants jump has not, fortunately, figured out that to be effective, bucking should involve direction change. IMO, bucking is not an indicator of anything but pain or exhuberance or inattention to training details.

Hauwse
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:02 PM
The best and most athletic bucker I ever was on (and off rather regularly) was a total cow over a fence and a miserable ride overall. The least likely to buck-as in never-was a former World Cup horse (for another nation) still doing the Junior Jumpers (4'6"ish). Don't recall either of these doing anything at all on turnout other then stuff themselves or find some mud to wallow in.

Thing is, you can't compare turnout behavior unless all things are equal. It is not an indicator. They have to be on the same work schedual, same feeding program, in the same size and type turnout for the same amount of time to draw any conclusions at all. The most athletic and talented jumper in the world in regular work turned out 6 hours a day on 2 acres is not going to do much. While the totally phlegmatic klutz you have to beat to get to move cooped up 4 days a week is going to act like a loon running around a 1/2 acre dry lot.

It is probably true that the some competitive, high performance horses are going to express themselves with equal energy when they disagree with the rider or just are eager to get out and go to work. That means they may be more likely to buck under saddle-and buck well if they really uncork one.

But I have heard that as an excuse for bad behavior way to often. Bucking under saddle is bad manners and should never be excused as "talent". Certainly no predictor of show ring success-not all good buckers are exceptional show horses and not all exceptional show horses are good buckers...or buck at all.

Throw the fact that bucking can be, and often is, a pain response and it really makes any generalizations impossible.

I totally agree with this. However I have been able to make comparison with jumping and bucking based on a certain type of buck, the pure vertical jump, the type Lipizzaner's do, but I have only really seen one horse that exhibited it. A TB filly fresh off the track that let loose on the lead shank on the way out to the paddock, and it was only chance that I noticed as she cam off the ground quietly and never hit the lead shank, only out the corner of my eye did I notice that her feet were 2' over my head, and I am over 6'. She could jump, she played over 5'6" , but really could not handle the distances on a big course.

findeight
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:06 PM
My point was that bucking needs to be consistently corrected and never excused when there is control over the circumstances-like at home or more normal show situations. That way when you get into screwy and scarey situations and are nervous on a horse that may be a bit fresher then usual? You can keep a lid on it.

BUT it is absolutely correct that before going on course at a major show is NOT the time or the place to get into it. That is one time you go with what you got. Fix it later.

ballisticgirl
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:10 PM
I agree as well, but am deep in thought here thinking now I may be scolding my youngster too much for having fun? If it becomes a buck and a scold every time I ride, riding won't be so much fun. For either of us.

I don't want our riding together to always feel punitive and appreciate Pony plus an inch's experience in working through the youngster issues.

findeight
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:25 PM
I agree as well, but am deep in thought here thinking now I may be scolding my youngster too much for having fun? If it becomes a buck and a scold every time I ride, riding won't be so much fun. For either of us.

I don't want our riding together to always feel punitive and appreciate Pony plus an inch's experience in working through the youngster issues.


You don't have to bust them one for bucking. That is a poor choice when the idea is to correct them and teach them what to do, not just spank them for making a wrong choice.

If they can get their balance to buck? They are not paying attention to FORWARD. So the cure lies in forward, forward, forward and not smacking the crap out of them (as tempting as that can be, honestly, if you have dealt with one you will admit feeling that temptation).

But, IMO, it's wrong thinking to assume that colt is just having "fun". No, he's not. He needs more direction for that youthful exhuberence-like get him busy and keep him forward.

Hauwse
Oct. 30, 2011, 12:51 PM
You don't have to bust them one for bucking. That is a poor choice when the idea is to correct them and teach them what to do, not just spank them for making a wrong choice.

If they can get their balance to buck? They are not paying attention to FORWARD. So the cure lies in forward, forward, forward and not smacking the crap out of them (as tempting as that can be, honestly, if you have dealt with one you will admit feeling that temptation).

But, IMO, it's wrong thinking to assume that colt is just having "fun". No, he's not. He needs more direction for that youthful exhuberence-like get him busy and keep him forward.

Again I agree. It is a fine line between a horse letting off a little steam, and a horse figuring out that a little bucking is a good way of getting out of working. At that point it becomes a training issue. as well there is the issue of exuberance becoming a hazard. when I was younger we had a small horse, very athletic, but had learned that a little fooling around was O.K. One lesson he pulled his usual bucking after a line in the indoor, pulled the rein out of one of my hands lost his balance and went down just before the wall, squishing me against the wall, broken ribs, wrist, fingers, and ankle avoidable if he had learned that bucking was not acceptable.

ballisticgirl
Oct. 30, 2011, 01:03 PM
Okay...the issue I am having is asking for the canter, ears are pinned and a buck or kick out. He's a lazy arse for sure. He doesn't do this when trainer rides. Frustrating.

My trainer is always telling me forward, forward, forward. He's a difficult forward ride as he is so wiggly. I am convinced he is way too curious about everything coming at him and have a hard time getting him to pay attention to me.

Too much horse for me, yes. I am hoping that even with these broken ribs and on the other side of recovery, we'll work through this stuff and make it clear to him that bucking is not an option.

bornfreenowexpensive
Oct. 30, 2011, 01:06 PM
couple of points...yess, you can get an indication of athletic ability based on seeing a horse buck...but just because they don't buck doesn't mean anything.

Some of the bucks hardest to ride are not from the most athletic horses (jarring kind of buck). But just as watching a fluid balanced mover...seeing a horse that has a balanced and fluid look with power while bucking often has turned out to be fluid, powerful and athletic over fences.


As far as correcting a buck undersaddle....it depends on the circumstances. If you over correct...you could cause more problems and a worse reaction. You can also kill a young horse's enthusiasm/work ethic. Of course you also don't want them to learn they can get out of work by dumping or intimidating their rider. Instead of punishing a buck...it is often better to just keep a youngster occupied so they don't buck to begin with (if they are bucking after a fence....you have probably stopped riding a bit...add more to the drill, turn, circle, go forward...keep them thinking so they land and their reaction startes to be OK what is next?). But a pissed off , kicking at thee leg, "I'm going to put you on the ground" should be corrected;)...and made sure there isn't a physical pain issue.

findeight
Oct. 30, 2011, 01:12 PM
Okay...the issue I am having is asking for the canter, ears are pinned and a buck or kick out. He's a lazy arse for sure. He doesn't do this when trainer rides. Frustrating.

My trainer is always telling me forward, forward, forward. He's a difficult forward ride as he is so wiggly. I am convinced he is way too curious about everything coming at him and have a hard time getting him to pay attention to me.

Too much horse for me, yes. I am hoping that even with these broken ribs and on the other side of recovery, we'll work through this stuff and make it clear to him that bucking is not an option.

Ride more like your trainer does if he does not act like this with when they ride. Make that your goal and rethink your riding philosophy.

He is just not taking you seriously and you are allowing him to learn he does not have to. Don't make excuses like he is curious or just having fun-because it's all about ignoring you to do as he pleases. So far, it's working for him. For you, not so much.

But he is young and it can be fixed...as he gets older and more experienced at it, it will get worse and more unpredicatable.

stolen virtue
Oct. 30, 2011, 01:27 PM
Wiggley is just green. My bucking story:

I thought a little bucking/crow hopping was OK with my old guy when I was just starting him 13 years ago and he was green.By the way trainer said no bucking ever. Since my last horse was a full on bolter I was pretty happy to "just" have bucking to deal with. Well, after my horse performed a bounce very well and cracked his back over the second element he took off bucking all the way down the ring-it was a large arena. I came off, was stepped on by one of his front legs and had compartment syndrome. I have a 6 inch scar on the inside of my left arm. Bucking under saddle is NOW never OK.

I hate being wrong and I really hate learning the hard way.So, no my new TB is never allowed to buck under saddle, and I saw him go straight up from a standstill last spring when he spooked. That would never be a buck I could sit, and working to pay my bills is a priority over bronc riding.

Foxtrot's
Oct. 30, 2011, 01:45 PM
Unscientific - but when a horse can turn himself inside out bucking (in the field) it shows he is athletic and his back does not hurt. All that play-fighting can only be good for strengthening back end and co-ordination.

I'd never condone it under saddle or in hand - that is his work time and time for concentrating on the rider.

CBoylen
Oct. 30, 2011, 02:16 PM
Absolutely true. If they can buck well, they can jump well. However, it doesn't necessarily follow that the ones that don't often want to buck can't jump, or that the ones that buck all the time are good jumpers. Just that if a good jumper does happen to buck, however infrequently, you're likely to hit the ground. ;)

doublesstable
Oct. 30, 2011, 02:50 PM
I don't think it does.

Mac123
Oct. 30, 2011, 04:01 PM
I could be wrong but I seem to remember that an article written about Wilhelm Genn mentioned how he preferred horses that could get "light" behind because it showed their natural aptitude for having a good hind end while jumping. I know I've seen a couple of his horses that tended to buck a bit and had super hind end technique.

I've always wondered about the Whitaker's horses - John and Michael seem to have a lot that buck on course that are also very careful. Portofino comes to mind.

BABYGREENTB
Oct. 30, 2011, 04:10 PM
Okay...the issue I am having is asking for the canter, ears are pinned and a buck or kick out. He's a lazy arse for sure. He doesn't do this when trainer rides. Frustrating.

My trainer is always telling me forward, forward, forward. He's a difficult forward ride as he is so wiggly. I am convinced he is way too curious about everything coming at him and have a hard time getting him to pay attention to me.

Too much horse for me, yes. I am hoping that even with these broken ribs and on the other side of recovery, we'll work through this stuff and make it clear to him that bucking is not an option.

Sounds like that kind of bucking is a resistance to going forward, not playful. I understand as I also have a young wb who can occasionally be lazy and will kick out if she really has decided she doesn't want to work. It's gotten easier as she has gotten more broke, but in general, the more forward she is, the straighter she is, and the straighter she is, the easier it is to steer.

ballisticgirl
Oct. 30, 2011, 04:46 PM
Yes, I'll pretend my horse is grand prix quality and light and super hind end action. I'll go with that! ; )