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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct. 13, 2010
    Posts
    152

    Default Tension.....suppling and relaxation exercises.

    I have a very athletic and talented fiery redhead. She thinks "forward" at all times. She can become quite hot and very tense which manifests itself often in her jaw. She can pull me right down onto her forehand with her. What are the best ways to calm and supple a hot horse?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 10, 2004
    Location
    The wilds of Maine
    Posts
    121

    Default

    I had an athletic and talented redhead who was as fiery as they came. We spent years doing what I called 'spirograph' rides, it was rare we got down a long side without at least one rebalancing circle.

    What worked for us:
    - plenty of circles of all sizes at any time in the ring (long side, short side, diagonal, etc)
    - 20M circle with smaller circle in the other direction at some point on the open side of the ring
    - deep or shallow serpentines
    - spiraling in and out of a circle
    - changes of gait on a circle
    - changes of impulsion within a gait on a circle
    - shoulder in to middle of long side, at E or B change to haunches in

    At all times, go forward! Circle to rebalance and keep her mind on you and you alone. Keep her thinking and you'll do well.

    Good luck!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May. 2, 2006
    Location
    CO
    Posts
    135

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sadiegem View Post
    I had an athletic and talented redhead who was as fiery as they came. We spent years doing what I called 'spirograph' rides, it was rare we got down a long side without at least one rebalancing circle.

    What worked for us:
    - plenty of circles of all sizes at any time in the ring (long side, short side, diagonal, etc)
    - 20M circle with smaller circle in the other direction at some point on the open side of the ring
    This is exactly what I do with my mare who gets tense and jiggy at the walk, and likes to trot around like a freight train hanging on me if she can. I had to give her 1-1.5 months off a few months ago for various reasons. When I started working her again we would do the above at the walk only. Now, we start out every ride by doing a million walk circles and making sure she she is straight and relaxed before we go on to anything else.

    Another key factor is (and this is a really bad habit that I sometimes get into) is not using my hands too much and really trying to ride off my seat. Sometimes my mare hangs, then I pull, then she pulls...it's a vicious circle UGH! That takes discipline on my part but it makes a huge difference in my mare.

    Good luck!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2010
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    1,356

    Default

    TTouch, TTouch, TTouch and more TTouch!

    Works for me!

    Plenty of books and videos here:

    www.ttouch.com



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2005
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    944

    Default

    Lots of lateral work is my favorite way to settle a hot horse - including spiral circles, TONS of shoulder in/shoulder fore. Once you get the horse to learn about the outside rein, sending them there based on repetitive lateral work is easier. The heaviest feeling horses and those with the stiffest jaws had no lateral flexion.

    Another good exercise is riding a large square rather than a circle, using the square corners to get the horse lighter from your seat and leg, not the hand. Good luck!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr. 2, 2009
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    4,879

    Default

    I really like to use repeated figure-eights (the circle-y kind), just staying on the pattern till they relax into the rhythm. If they are balanced enough, I use 10 m turns so they have to pay attention, if not, I'll make the circles bigger but ride the pattern a bazillion times until they start to jussst relaaaxxxx.



  7. #7

    Default

    I have that exact home, OP . Very depressing sometimes, too. She can be great for a few days, seem like she's improving well and then she'll come out of her stall with a mission to dive straight down into the ground every chance she can get, find or create.



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