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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 12, 2008
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    PA
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    986

    Default Throwing this out there...

    ...in the hopes that you will take pity on us and help us become the eventers I know we can be! Charlie and I went XC schooling for the fourth time ever on Friday (WAY better than fighting crowds in the mall ), and I was hoping to get some critiques/advice from those who know far more about eventing than I do.
    Quick intro:
    Charlie - unknown age (10-12?)/unknown breed (Belgian cross?) former Amish carthorse. Under saddle for about 2.5 years now, but almost exclusively "trained" by me. Training has been semi-irregular due to my being in vet school.
    Me - amateur 20-something who has been riding on and off for almost 20 years. No innate talent for any athletics whatsoever, but I try hard.
    This video - taken Friday. A cold front was rolling in, and Charlie was VERY up for the first 15 minutes (throwing in bucks, etc.) I am riding him a little more timidly/not as forward as I should have because of that. In hindsight I should have ridden more like I normally do (like he would get a crop behind the leg when trying to suck back). I left the good AND bad parts in so you could see us in all our glory.

    Sorry for the novel. You can be tough on us--I can at least look at his nice tail and know I'm doing at least one thing right!

    ETA: Maybe the link would be helpful.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjNr6...are_video_user
    Last edited by cleozowner; Nov. 25, 2012 at 06:06 PM. Reason: Forgot the link, duh
    Proud member of the "I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday" clique

    Former owner of the best Amish-carthorse-turned-eventer ever



  2. #2
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    Jan. 16, 2002
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    West Coast of Michigan
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    Default

    It would help if you'd link the video.
    Click here before you buy.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    May. 20, 2008
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    851

    Default

    OK, am I missing something? I don't see a video link.



  4. #4
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    Jan. 12, 2008
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    PA
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    Default

    Hahaha after all that stressing about it!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjNr6...are_video_user
    Proud member of the "I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday" clique

    Former owner of the best Amish-carthorse-turned-eventer ever



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 14, 2010
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    Earlysville, Virginia
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    3,224

    Default

    I would say leg leg leg! Im not an eventer, but I would want my horse more forward.

    He's super cute though!
    Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
    White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)

    Mystical Moment, 1977-2010.


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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2001
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    Coatesville, Pa.
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    5,418

    Default

    Ok I am going to say what was said to be long ago by a very BNT.

    "I don't want you to jump anything out here that you don't want to jump. Having said that I don't want you to leave here not having jumped something you did want to jump. But beware. Do not approach a fence and have a change of heart. You must commit for your horse to do the same."

    I think of that old quote often!!!

    If you point a horse to a jump then you should be all about getting to the other side. And a stop or run by should unleash the hounds of hell onto your poor uncommitted horse. (meaning kick crop and growl. Not abuse)

    You came into a few of those fences you stopped at needing him to convince you. And that's not a path to future success. If those heights or jumps bother you, go down until you are eager to jump whats in your path.

    ~Emily
    "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries


    8 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep. 24, 2010
    Location
    Area 1, Connecticut
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    676

    Default

    He definitely needs to be more foward, but you seem to know that because of what you wrote above. Its not so much about the speed, but more about getting his hind end up underneath himself so he can jump easily from his hindquarters insteading of having to heave himself over the fences.

    I think you could do yourself a world of favors if you just tweak the way your correct him for his misbehavior. In my opinion, he is not frightened or scared or unconfident, he is just being naughty because he can. When he runs out, stop him (try not to let him run past the fence if he goes sideways), turn him back toward the fence in the direction he ran out in (for example, if he ran out left, turn him right towards the fence, don't let him turn away), then give him one or two good cracks with your stick. Then reapproach and praise when he does it. It definitely seems like a stubborn horse who has some straightness issues.

    I think it would also help if you shorten up your reins a tad and ride more up in your galloping position, even though that may seem counterproductive. Your defensive position is also completely understandable if he was misbehaving earlier, but I think staying back in the tack is causing you to get left behind and kill his engine a little bit.

    He's cute though, and certainly capable, and for his fourth time out its not so bad. Just keep practicing creating a "tunnel" with your hands and legs so his only option is to go forward and straight over the fence. A horse with a running out habit does not make a very good eventer so you want to stop that as soon as possible. I think you need to commit a bit more to going over the fence and that may help the problem too. Good luck!
    Blog: http://movingonupeventing.blogspot.com/

    Don't believe the hype.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    May. 20, 2008
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    851

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Xctrygirl View Post
    Ok I am going to say what was said to be long ago by a very BNT.

    "I don't want you to jump anything out here that you don't want to jump. Having said that I don't want you to leave here not having jumped something you did want to jump. But beware. Do not approach a fence and have a change of heart. You must commit for your horse to do the same."

    I think of that old quote often!!!

    If you point a horse to a jump then you should be all about getting to the other side. And a stop or run by should unleash the hounds of hell onto your poor uncommitted horse. (meaning kick crop and growl. Not abuse)

    You came into a few of those fences you stopped at needing him to convince you. And that's not a path to future success. If those heights or jumps bother you, go down until you are eager to jump whats in your path.

    ~Emily

    Agree 100%!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan. 6, 2008
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    Area II, the Blue Ridge Mountains
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    Default

    I totally agree here and have two things to add:

    1. approaching the fences, make sure he is straight and not bulging out one shoulder or the other. Run outs are all about lack of straightness. If he stops, it should be straight on and only after you have dug your heels in and given him a good pop with the crop. So think forward AND straight.

    2, Give yourself more credit. You have a lovely position and look like a natural rider. You just need to be more brave and tunnel him into the fences. You have the base, and that's something that a lot of people never get.


    Quote Originally Posted by JFCeventer View Post
    He definitely needs to be more foward, but you seem to know that because of what you wrote above. Its not so much about the speed, but more about getting his hind end up underneath himself so he can jump easily from his hindquarters insteading of having to heave himself over the fences.

    I think you could do yourself a world of favors if you just tweak the way your correct him for his misbehavior. In my opinion, he is not frightened or scared or unconfident, he is just being naughty because he can. When he runs out, stop him (try not to let him run past the fence if he goes sideways), turn him back toward the fence in the direction he ran out in (for example, if he ran out left, turn him right towards the fence, don't let him turn away), then give him one or two good cracks with your stick. Then reapproach and praise when he does it. It definitely seems like a stubborn horse who has some straightness issues.

    I think it would also help if you shorten up your reins a tad and ride more up in your galloping position, even though that may seem counterproductive. Your defensive position is also completely understandable if he was misbehaving earlier, but I think staying back in the tack is causing you to get left behind and kill his engine a little bit.

    He's cute though, and certainly capable, and for his fourth time out its not so bad. Just keep practicing creating a "tunnel" with your hands and legs so his only option is to go forward and straight over the fence. A horse with a running out habit does not make a very good eventer so you want to stop that as soon as possible. I think you need to commit a bit more to going over the fence and that may help the problem too. Good luck!


    3 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec. 12, 2004
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    Massachusetts
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    5,719

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JFCeventer View Post
    He definitely needs to be more foward, but you seem to know that because of what you wrote above. Its not so much about the speed, but more about getting his hind end up underneath himself so he can jump easily from his hindquarters insteading of having to heave himself over the fences.

    I think you could do yourself a world of favors if you just tweak the way your correct him for his misbehavior. In my opinion, he is not frightened or scared or unconfident, he is just being naughty because he can. When he runs out, stop him (try not to let him run past the fence if he goes sideways), turn him back toward the fence in the direction he ran out in (for example, if he ran out left, turn him right towards the fence, don't let him turn away), then give him one or two good cracks with your stick. Then reapproach and praise when he does it. It definitely seems like a stubborn horse who has some straightness issues.

    I think it would also help if you shorten up your reins a tad and ride more up in your galloping position, even though that may seem counterproductive. Your defensive position is also completely understandable if he was misbehaving earlier, but I think staying back in the tack is causing you to get left behind and kill his engine a little bit.

    He's cute though, and certainly capable, and for his fourth time out its not so bad. Just keep practicing creating a "tunnel" with your hands and legs so his only option is to go forward and straight over the fence. A horse with a running out habit does not make a very good eventer so you want to stop that as soon as possible. I think you need to commit a bit more to going over the fence and that may help the problem too. Good luck!
    This. I didn't see overfaced or nervous or scared, I saw NAUGHTY, and I cringed every time you circled him away from the fences. Allowing him to run out and circle away from them is essentially rewarding him for his naughtiness. Like JFC says....turn him back, and pop him good with that crop. Heck, I probably wouldn't even let him reapproach if the fence was small enough...no reason he can't heft his booty over the fence from a walk/standstill, just to learn a lesson a few times.

    And yes, like you said, forward forward forward. It's hard to convince our little brains that going forward and working is the best option for a horse who is being naughty, but it really is!

    Also, I laughed every time your trainer/videographer went "heh heh" at a bad jump. That's the universal "glad I'm not sitting that awkward jump" chuckle.

    But your horse is super, super super cute, and Charlie is literally the perfect name for him. I second what everyone else has said: he's perfectly capable of the job (as are you!) and for his fourth time out, he's being a pretty good boy, you just have to get your confidence in gear and be a little meaner to him...he doesn't need to run out at jumps that size!
    Well isn't this dandy?



  11. #11
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    Apr. 9, 2012
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    NYC=center of the universe
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    You two are really cute together! He's darling!
    I agree it's all about YOU committing. He looks as if he is looking to you for direction and you're not giving it clearly. You're the human, you're in charge, you pick which jumps you're doing, and it's his job to do it. I don't see that type of relationship. I think his uncertainty came from you. Ride him to it and don't accept anything less. THAT is what will give both of you confidence.
    Born under a rock and owned by beasts!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul. 19, 2003
    Location
    Middleburg, VA
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    12,483

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    Quote Originally Posted by ahbaumgardner View Post
    I totally agree here and have two things to add:

    1. approaching the fences, make sure he is straight and not bulging out one shoulder or the other. Run outs are all about lack of straightness. If he stops, it should be straight on and only after you have dug your heels in and given him a good pop with the crop. So think forward AND straight.

    2, Give yourself more credit. You have a lovely position and look like a natural rider. You just need to be more brave and tunnel him into the fences. You have the base, and that's something that a lot of people never get.
    Agree totally with number 1. Even in your warm up you can see that you tend to ride with all inside rein and little to no outside. Even in your flatwork (especially in your flat work!), think about riding his shoulders through the turns a little more. I like to ride "squares" when I am losing the outside shoulder. Straight, straight straight.

    GO FORWARD!!! Even though you're just trotting, you can ride a lot more positively to these things. He looks like he's good and capable and probably fairly scopey for a big guy, but he really can't help you or himself much out of a pluggy, western jog. So, KICK ON.

    Stay tall in the saddle. You don't massively jump ahead, but a couple of your runs out occurred when you just softened. I don't know if you were trying to go over the fence, or if you were giving up...but in either instance ADD LEG, don't give your shoulders. If you get left, it's OK....it's CROSS COUNTRY!!!!

    Where's your whip?? He's got a cheeky streak....he needs a good swat at a lot of those stop/run out things. His job is to get to point A to point B as you direct...don't be nice to him! Spank him.

    Really, a lot of your troubles would be cured by going forward and straight. You can forget everything else if you fix those two things.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov. 14, 2007
    Location
    Southern California
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    796

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    Oh, I want one! I think your guy is adorable! Yes, he's green, he seems unsure, and probably needs a bit stronger ride. But he's soooo cute.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2012
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    67

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    Work on approaching scary looking jumps (flowers, tarps, etc.) that are about 6" lower so that you have the confidence to kick him on when he's naughty. He's peeking a bit at the jump; then you drop him, look down, and circle away. This is a really bad pattern to get yourself into. Keep the jumps lower for now so that you feel brave enough to ride him hard and teach him under no circumstances is he going around. Also with a lower fence, he could jump it from a standstill - so if he peeks and stops, just keep him straight and make him crawl over it if you have to.



  15. #15
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    Mar. 23, 2005
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    Portland, Oregon
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    What a cute boy!

    I agree with everyone else - forward forward forward and straight straight straight. He's not afraid of those jumps; he's just not being asked to commit.

    It's an easy trap to fall into, especially with a greenie and one who you suspect might be thinking of being naughty. It's so much easier for YOU to think about what's coming and believe (though not correctly ) you are prepared for it if you let that trot (or canter) be eased up a little, but actually the opposite is true. (I ride a very forward-thinking mare who also likes to leave out the stride in front of the jump (!), and believe me I fight the "slow down, ease up" urge ALL. THE. TIME. But if I actually keep RIDING her, keep my leg on, and keep her balanced from back to front, even those things that seem like they might be from going too forward - like those long spots - disappear.)

    I think it is Jimmy Wofford who says that you should make your mistakes going forward. We all screw up on occasion, but those mistakes - and the horse's future training - are generally much better if made with your leg on and the horse in a forward gait (which doesn't, as someone up there said, mean just faster but also more engaged).

    And use your crop when he refuses (or threatens to) - it's not just there for decoration!
    Proud member of the EDRF



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr. 30, 2002
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    He is a beautiful horse and a great mover, and I love your position very much. Don't be too hard on yourself, and listen to your instructor. I loved your video.

    In eventing, as in any open field riding, when you point your horse at a jump, you should set it up so you are successful and get over it safely. So don't point him at something if it's too big for you to be confident. Stay small until you are absolutely sure. Be sure. And let your leg reinforce your decision. Don't let him decide. Once you have committed, then expect him to be on board with that. You're in charge. But you don't have to beat him or be mean to him to get the job done; He does not need to be "forward", or hot to the leg, just obedient when you ask him to pop over something, even if it's from a walk. As long as you aren't scaring him or over facing him he will try it for you, he looks like that sort of horse. I think you are doing a great job! Keep it up!
    "Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring." -- Emerson
    www.eventhorse.wordpress.com



  17. #17
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    Mar. 17, 2003
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    North Texas, US
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    I didn't really see naughty...I think in *his* mind, he was doing you a favor and taking care of you. Because you weren't riding confidently to new fences the first time, he was making the very wise, in his opinon, to avoid the scary thing that mom wasn't sure about. On reapproach, you rode more assertively with a "come on, we can do it" attitude and he was "okay, mom says we can do this so okay."

    I speak from long ago experience... my first horse, if *I* quit in front a fence, he quit and usually, gave me the opportunity to think about the errors of my way by flinging me into said fence (usually when I quit, I crawled up his neck) and went off for a canter...allowing me ample time to think about what I had done! I did learn, though I ate a number of fences first!!!

    I was taught early on to always carry a stick...you may not need it, but it sucks when you do and don't have it.

    I like him a lot, he's very cute and a tidy jumper. You've done a good job with him. Just believe you two can do it. Sit up, put the leg on and let him know you're with him!!!!

    And most importantly, have fun! Good luck with him!!
    www.debracysporthorses.com
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  18. #18
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    Oct. 11, 2007
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    Andover, MA
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    Agree with others... you need to tell him go ahead, you'll be fine! I rode a lovely old horse for a while who had vision issues and completely required the rider to commit to getting over the fence, no matter what, or he'd stop. I used my crop some, but used my voice even more... I basically talked to him all the time and praised him for every good jump. (I think "talking all the time" kept me breathing, which meant I was much less tense!)
    You have to have experiences to gain experience.

    Proudly owned by Mythic Feronia, 1998 Morgan mare; G-dspeed Trump & Minnie; welcome 2014 Morgan filly MtnTop FlyWithMeJosephine



  19. #19
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    Dec. 21, 2008
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    Jacksonville, FL
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    I agree with everything everyone is saying. At a lot of those it looks like you weren't sure and gave up a bit on approach. Trotting seems friendlier but I find it's much easier to do that "give up" thing when trotting and let your forward die a bit. For me it's easier to keep that rhythm and really sit and drive/keep engaged at the canter. That may be helpful in keeping him confident to the fence.



  20. #20
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    Mar. 7, 2004
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    New Zealand
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    Forward - waaaaay more forward. I'd actually consider moving him back to a snaffle so that he feels he can take hold and go a little. Then, before you start jumping, I suggest you do some galloping around that field (or any field). Get up off his back, short stirrups and really go for it. Hear the thunder! Do some galloping / cantering up and down hills, over uneven ground, through water. Once you've done a bit of that, those tiny ditches won't even register with either of you.

    When you start jumping, commit. All of those jumps were low enough so that he could have jumped them from a stand still. If he stops, pop him with your whip and ask him to jump from where he is.

    He ran (wandered) off the second jump of the combinations a lot of the time because he wasn't going forward enough so wasn't getting the correct striding.

    Take a friend schooling and do some whooping and hollering around over the jumps - get friend to give you a lead.



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