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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep. 16, 2002
    Location
    Central NJ
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    947

    Lightbulb First 10 rides

    What do eventers like to see and do on those first few rides on a newly backed horse? I am just backing my mare now and would like to know what others expect after a few riders. I have no hurried time frame and she is also four months pregnant and seven years old. She will WTC on the lunge or long lines (more challenging to her balance) from voice commands. My expectations are that she:
    1. stand for all mounting, both sides
    2. walk off from a voice and light leg aid
    3. yield head to both directions with direct rein
    4. follow nose at walk on circle and school figures
    5. trot comfortably on the long sides, maintain gait
    6. halt from voice command from walk or trot

    Another thing I may consider is ride in both indoor and outdoor arenas.
    What are your priorities in those first few rides.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan. 19, 2005
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    Default

    Every horse is different. But most of mine....within 10 rides would WTC in the ring....not always get their leads but pick the canter. Trot large patterns....steering will be a bit rough in spots of course. Walk or trot over a pole....a few have popped over a cross rail by then (helps get the canter). And all of them had gone for trail rides around the farm first with a buddy and then alone within the first 10 rides.....but they would have also been ponied out on trail rides many many times before I ever sat on them. I personally try and get them out of the ring asap. So we will do a small amount in the ring and then go for a hack.....and then go for a hack and do a small amount in the ring....or just go for a hack. But again....it really depends on the horse. Some got more ground work than others...some were easier than others.
    ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **



  3. #3
    Join Date
    May. 23, 2006
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    5,677

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bornfreenowexpensive View Post
    Every horse is different. But most of mine....within 10 rides would WTC in the ring....not always get their leads but pick the canter. Trot large patterns....steering will be a bit rough in spots of course. Walk or trot over a pole....a few have popped over a cross rail by then (helps get the canter). And all of them had gone for trail rides around the farm first with a buddy and then alone within the first 10 rides.....but they would have also been ponied out on trail rides many many times before I ever sat on them. I personally try and get them out of the ring asap. So we will do a small amount in the ring and then go for a hack.....and then go for a hack and do a small amount in the ring....or just go for a hack. But again....it really depends on the horse. Some got more ground work than others...some were easier than others.


    WOW....I must surely "baby" my babies then.....



  4. #4
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    Jan. 19, 2005
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by snoopy View Post
    WOW....I must surely "baby" my babies then.....

    10 days is two weeks undersaddle...meaning from when I first sat on them.....not from when I first started working with them. If you are talking from absolute scratch....then my response is diffferent...hell I might not even be sitting on them within 10 days. Most of mine have been long lined....so there is a bit of steering and breaks before I've sat on them. Most have free schoolled a bit over fences. And all of them have ponied off other horses on lots of trails, including over logs and poles.


    I wouldn't take them to a show out in public within 10 days....probably couldn't stay in a dreassage ring. But go out on a trail ride the second week they have been under saddle...you bet. And most canter down the long side withing the first 5-6 rides.
    ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb. 22, 2000
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    Default

    I'm with snoopy here.

    The thing about a just-backed horse is you really shouldn't be sitting on them for very long. Ten minutes can be a lot.

    You could teach yielding to the direct rein on the ground and unmounted which would then take something off your u/s list but I think you're expecting a lot for a relatively short time of riding.

    But as you're asking what eventers like to see on a just-backed horse, I'd say that I don't really care about how they are u/s as much as how they are on the ground. How do they react to new situations? Do they listen well in the round pen or on the lunge? What is the horse's attitude toward work? While you might not be able to get a good sense of a horse's balance and abilities if they've only been ridden ten times (I'm saying this as a prospective buyer, not the trainer), you can get a decent sense of their work ethic.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 10, 2001
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    6,853

    Default

    Maybe the better idea is what do you expect after 10 WEEKS? Hell, 10 rides I am still going for good steering and at least some idea of brakes. For me these first rides are only about fun and confidence. I shoot for anything where the horse feels forward and trusting without me using a lot of hand or leg. Then again, I like those types of horses so my POV is skewed.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    May. 23, 2006
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    Yes...even my adult horses do not do that much when they are being legged up after a rest...no ring work, no WTC, no jumping etc....not for 3 to 4 weeks. As for the babies/just under saddle...it is about brief periods of learning to steer and STOP. Maybe I am chicken but I want the stop button firmly established before I take them out hacking for sure....Working from the ground is great, but the new experiences of carrying weight sometimes negate some of the things taught from the ground. Babies can do supid things and I certainly want the stop and go buttons established as well as some strength on their back muscles before I start jumping/hacking outside of the ring. I am with Reed on this...10 days?!, I would be asking more about 10 weeks. Just backed youngsters normally get no more than 15 minutes in the beginning.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan. 19, 2005
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    PA
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    Default

    I guess it all how you say it. What I described at 10 days....I'm rarely on them for more than 15 minutes and never over 30 minutes. 5-10 min in the ring and a 5-10 minute hack...walking. They don't steer that well and don't have the best breaks...so yes, I do think I'm probably more gutsy than most in that I don't mind sitting on that going out of the ring. Forward also isn't all that instilled. But once I don't think I'm going to die....I try and get out of the ring. Even if it is just to walk up the drive way and back. They walk over poles...because that is more interesting. But it is a single pole..... it just helps with my steering to give them a destination. They would have walked over it in hand and been ponied overe it and on a lunge line so it isn't new. They rarely if EVER even break a sweat.....I'm usually the one sweating.

    I'm not talking about jumping a course....or even expecting them to canter around the whole ring....at most they might step over an 18" cross pole to help get them into the canter (not for the sake of jumping) but most haven't needed it...and that is at the end of 10 days. But I don't wait to ask for the canter until they have great walk trot transitions.....because that will be months away. I don't ask for a contact or them to go on the bit....and lord knows that they will not be going straight yet....I also don't always expect them to stand still. But happily going out of the ring for a walk on a loose rein is a very important thing for me and it is something we do very early on. Because most of that first YEAR...they will spend hacking out on the hills mostly at the walk. And that will be mixed some with a rider on their back and a lot just being ponied.
    ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2007
    Posts
    401

    Default Babies

    GO - STOP - TURN (for the warmbloods)

    STOP - GO - TURN (for the TB's)

    In that order!

    Keep it simple, fun and safe.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 16, 2002
    Location
    Central NJ
    Posts
    947

    Wink

    Thanks guys, she is my FEH (lower level). She has done a lot of ground work with lunging and long lining- WTC. I know her spook pattern when things upset her (like when the unhooked side rein got hung up on the outgate- bad me). I don't have the ability to pony her, so that we haven't done.

    I find that she has a 10 minute limit for mouted work at this point and that's fine by me. Just wondering if my expectations are reasonable. Also, I won't be able to do ten days straight of riding, so more like a few weeks with 3rides/week.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct. 24, 2003
    Location
    The rolling hills of Virginia
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    5,892

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Kanga View Post
    GO - STOP - TURN (for the warmbloods)

    STOP - GO - TURN (for the TB's)

    In that order!

    Keep it simple, fun and safe.
    PHFFFT! There goes my afternoon coffee out my nose! *SIGH* Thou speaketh the truth.

    Not just for the first 10 either. Seems that is a lifetime theme for these guys. After that they either jump or they don't, 'cause they either love it or they don't. Silly ponies.

    SCFarm
    The above post is an opinion, just an opinion. If it were a real live fact it would include supporting links to websites full of people who already agreed with me.

    www.southern-cross-farm.com



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct. 24, 2003
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    The rolling hills of Virginia
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    Default

    Karma - She is likely able to handle a whole lot more than a 3 or 4 yo at this point. She is 7, so she has likely grown most of a brain by now! And at 4 months pregnant she is not cycling and not even showing yet - so she is physically and emotionally as stable as a mare gets. Like ever.

    Let her be your guide. Seems like you know her very well. But do NOT let her sucker you into the spook thing. Expect her NOT to spook ever. But respect when she is truly confused or upset. In her condition, that just shouldn't be very often. Gosh knows they know us as well (or better) than we know them. Don't let her do all the training! (Don't ask how I know how this happens - let's just say I am well trained!)

    SCFarm
    The above post is an opinion, just an opinion. If it were a real live fact it would include supporting links to websites full of people who already agreed with me.

    www.southern-cross-farm.com



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