But all said, I think you need to drop the gadgets. Get to the root of the problem.
My mare was like your gelding. Had every concievable piece of tack on her. I dropped it all off and worked on the basics.
Make SURE YOUR BASICS ARE SOLID. Hell. I can go jump a 4"6 oxer. Could I make it around the course? Not likely. I still need work on my communication.
It looks like you need work on communicating with your horse. Get him responsive, let him know when he's being good, and when he's being bad. When he throws his head, stick those long legs on him like crazy glue. Get him UNDER you. Rushing? Have him spend six weeks trotting jumps, halting, doing everything possible to keep him LISTENING to you.
haha!! my legs dont do much wrapping on a 17' horse!! yeah..i see what you guys mean... we are taking it pretty slow w/him... i had a gymnastics lesson on him today just trying to get him collected and under me and stuff and you will be happy to know i DID NOT use the pulley reins!! haha GO ME!!
To start with, what on earth are you asking him to do that he feels scared enough to snap a standing martingale in half? And just how tight do you have the martingale?
I don't actually have a lot of experience with running martingales - if I can't get the job done with flatwork the horse gets a different job - but my understanding is that if you have a correctly adjusted running martingale, your horse can't "catch the bit", thus making the draw reins redundant and dangerous.
It is your legs' job to keep your horse more "concentrated" and his "head tucked". (Hhhmmm - I hear Michel Matz talk about that all the time!) And a 3-ring is a harsh bit, especially when combined with a figure 8 so he can't get away from it. If he has a soft mouth, you ought to be able to ride him in a rubber snaffle, no figure 8, no other crap.
And why on earth did you take this darling horse and rush him from the track to jumper classes? Was he already schooled on the flat before you got him? Oh, guess not - otherwise you wouldn't need the crap. If you backtracked and did your homework, like has already been suggested, he would have time to learn how to jump better. If he was truly balanced, he would be able to rock back over his hocks and jump up and around the fence instead of rushing off the ground and jumping at them. That will lead to a bad wreck, especially when combined with your tendency to jump ahead.
If you were my student you'd be without your stirrups in the indoor arena for the rest of the winter with a plain snaffle, learning to ride from your leg & seat to your hand, and your horse would be jumping gymnastics on a loose rein so he could learn how to use himself without interference. He certainly looks athletic enough - he ought to get the opportunity to do more than crawl out from under a bad distance.
That's a great start! Gymnastics are definately the way to go.
A little bit more advice. You, but I know you're excited and showing is SO MUCH FUN, might want to back off from the ring for a little bit.
A rideable horse is a happy horse. Do gymnastics. Explore other bits. Try the Herm Sprenger KK bits, I LOFF those bits.
Don't rush it at all. Please. Especially with an OTTB. (I'm correct - that's what he is, right?) Since he's had the racing impact on him, a solid dressage/flatwork base and building the muscles will further his already percievable talent.
Take a good 6 months to develop his back end. Maybe bring in a dressage coach if your coach is cool with that? Trust me, jump him after he's rideable, and you've done above.
A whole different, happy horse.
"We will not agree to war, unless you have spent the same amount of money first seeking peace" - anonymous
I\'m old enough to know better, yet young enough to get away with it.
he was off the track before he turned 4 years old...so he has had 2 1/2 YEARS to do FLAT WORK, flat work, flat work!! but not w/me...the old people that had him didnt really know what they were doing *so i heard...i dont really know!!* so he was phsyco wwhen i got him! he just cant go w/chains or standing martingales... he throws his head up a lot and just snaps them in half! its not because hes scared...just because he is jake! i have the 3ring on the easiest hole and he likes it a lot, i have tried 14 other bits and this one worked best so its not like i just randomly picked it!! i only jump him once, MAYBE 2 TIMES a week..the rest of the days are flat work flat work flat work, with only the 3 ring bit and none of the other stuff! he only uses it when he is jumping...does that clear a few more things up? hope so...and i just saw this comment but his martingale is not that tight at all
Maybe he is rushing and snapping martingales because he is scared or in pain? If I had a horse that seems to be as talented and forgiving as yours, then I would have a vet out ASAP trying to find out what is wrong!
he snaps them on teh flat, not jumping...he just randomly throws his head up a lot... and the running allows him to do this but the standing just breaks in half, he just keeps goign on like nothing happends lol so it doesnt bother him, he doesnt actually mean to break it
What is the deal with the three ring?!?! You make it sound like such an awful bit. Obviously it is not that bad, because it is used by many many people out there. When you have a super strong horse, who likes to pull down on you, you need leverage to keep the horse together, and MAYBE the horse likes to lock his jaw or open his mouth to avoid the bit, that would call for the figure 8. Not too harsh at all. Just a tough horse to ride. I think you people need to chill on this girl. Not all horses are push button!
You just explained why he's the way he is, but why won't you address the flat work issue?
If he was trained by someone else, and didn't like it or and respond to their methods, why would you expect him to automatically accept your demands?
He sounds like a smart horse. Maybe he needs to learn to listen to you. No horse I have seen regularly snaps martingales and is left to continue doing so. If he kept stopping or started rearing, would you go along defending that?
It takes YEARS to form bonds and communication.
Quick fixes end with tears, disappointement and not happy horses or riders.
Trust me. I bought a GERMAN WWII tank of a mare. She needed to listen to me REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAL bad. And stop yanking me, jumping from where she wanted etc.
Here's a pic of her.
I\'m old enough to know better, yet young enough to get away with it.
thanks romismoke!! i appreciate it... these people dont understand i dont think! my horse is not a 1mil dollar perfect push button pony like theirs... oh well )0:,' and BEBE yes i am listening to your advice and i have told you, i hack my horse every day of the week and we work on all of this stuff!! u make it sound like i am murdering my poor pony b/c i dont work w/him or something?? im confused, sorry
This is so reminiscent of the George Morris threads, where people got upset at him for saying, in clinics and at the Final and such, that the level of horsemanship has decreased in young riders. This thread is just another example of many that indicate the growing number of young riders with poor horsemanship.
It makes me really sad and frustrated to read posts like Sunkist's. There are still many of good, educated young horspeople out there, but they seem to be getting few and far between.
Only somebody who had consumed two or three quarts of assorted home made wines at a sitting could have an inkling of the quaking nausea, the raging inferno within, the jangling nerves, the black despairing outlook. --James Herriot