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Slowing down a trot!

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  • Slowing down a trot!

    My mare is very green, and has a major fast trot and a nice slow trot. How do I keep her in the slow contained trot?

    She has so much energy, and I have to lunge her for 30min just to be able to expend her energy levels, and to get her emotions under control.

    Once on her, she gets lazy, but with a crop she is right back up to wanting to canter, or trot way to fast. So without the crop she has a hard time picking up any trot.

    I am working inside a 60ft round pen....really looking for some great suggestions. I will try anything to help her stop riding with her emotions and start thinking. She has gotten so much better with thinking, but still I can see her emotions rise back up into it...

  • #2
    1. your ipod is your friend. rating is controlled by the rider, but controlling it is kind of like running down hill when you were a kid.... sometimes it's easier just to speed up and go with it. hence why rating your horse seems so hard. ideally you want to find music that has the exact rhythm of her trot that you want. play it either on headphones, or a stereo near the RP and focus on the music. I actually have different playlists for different horses and their "workouts"
    2. do you have somewhere other than the RP to work her? other than spiraling in and out, and a few figure eights there isn't that much else you can do in 60ft, and i'm betting some of that hotness/laziness is boredom.
    3. sing. see option 1
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble

    Comment


    • #3
      I agree that YOU need to control the speed with your seat- and music can really help you with this...but I am going to go one step further and say that your mare sounds like she needs the basic understanding of transitions and rythem vs stride length.

      I also wonder if by faster/slower trot you are talking about rythem or length of stride or power of impulsion... lol ...And not seeing what you mean I am imagining in my own mind the difference between a typical 'western' jog and a fast, medium trot, maybe unbalanced?

      I'm not sure how much I can describe here, but I would start with her in the walk and use your seat to ask for a short, medium, and long stride in the walk (Transitions within that gait) and if she tries to trot, gently remind her to walk by blocking her trot movement with your seat and stretch your shouders upward while settling your seat deeper into the saddle, while maintaining motion to signal a walk gait.
      When you are ready to ask her to trot, stretch upward with some additional weight into your stirrups and just think trot. Once she is trotting you can ask for the same short, medium, and longer strides in the trot. Maintain the same rythem in all stride lengths.
      She needs to understand that a transition to a new gait is not asking her to merely go faster, or slower (trot or walk) but you are asking her to CHANGE the sequence of her footfall. In order to communicate this you need to be very aware of your position in the saddle and be deliberate in your movements.
      IF she moves with you, she will find harmony. If she moves against you, she will experience disharmony- which is not pleasant and creates pressure for her.

      Soon you will be able to ask for the slower trot in your seat and she will follow your lead in order to maintain harmony.

      Resist the urge to let her transition to the trot in a fast trot and use your reins to bring her back- make sure in all transitions you are LEADING her and making it clear what you are asking for... If she answers you incorrectly, do not try to force her into it, go back to the walk and make it clear there..then try it in the trot.

      This excersize actually has many many steps to it, and is hard to explain here- but hopefully you have gotten something from this!

      I also think this excersize will help you communicate with your seat and hopefully bypass the crop- from your description it sounds like the crop merely 'wakes her up' but the actual communication isn't there...

      I will pm you because there is so much more! lol

      Good luck with her! Sometimes it seems overwhelming with a greeny, but if you stick to the basics she will start to get it...

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        I am def. going to be bringing out the radio. I listen to my ipod now when I ride, but I would rather have it through the radio.

        We are building our arena so all I have is a roundpen for 30more days. :-)

        Should I keep lunging her?

        the place that broke her and rode her for 6-7weeks, said it took him about 30min to get her to focus on what he was asking her to do.
        When I did this with-in 10min she was focusing on me instead of looking out.

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by RLF View Post
          I agree that YOU need to control the speed with your seat- and music can really help you with this...but I am going to go one step further and say that your mare sounds like she needs the basic understanding of transitions and rythem vs stride length.

          I also wonder if by faster/slower trot you are talking about rythem or length of stride or power of impulsion... lol ...And not seeing what you mean I am imagining in my own mind the difference between a typical 'western' jog and a fast, medium trot, maybe unbalanced?

          I'm not sure how much I can describe here, but I would start with her in the walk and use your seat to ask for a short, medium, and long stride in the walk (Transitions within that gait) and if she tries to trot, gently remind her to walk by blocking her trot movement with your seat and stretch your shouders upward while settling your seat deeper into the saddle, while maintaining motion to signal a walk gait.
          When you are ready to ask her to trot, stretch upward with some additional weight into your stirrups and just think trot. Once she is trotting you can ask for the same short, medium, and longer strides in the trot. Maintain the same rythem in all stride lengths.
          She needs to understand that a transition to a new gait is not asking her to merely go faster, or slower (trot or walk) but you are asking her to CHANGE the sequence of her footfall. In order to communicate this you need to be very aware of your position in the saddle and be deliberate in your movements.
          IF she moves with you, she will find harmony. If she moves against you, she will experience disharmony- which is not pleasant and creates pressure for her.

          Soon you will be able to ask for the slower trot in your seat and she will follow your lead in order to maintain harmony.

          Resist the urge to let her transition to the trot in a fast trot and use your reins to bring her back- make sure in all transitions you are LEADING her and making it clear what you are asking for... If she answers you incorrectly, do not try to force her into it, go back to the walk and make it clear there..then try it in the trot.

          This excersize actually has many many steps to it, and is hard to explain here- but hopefully you have gotten something from this!

          I also think this excersize will help you communicate with your seat and hopefully bypass the crop- from your description it sounds like the crop merely 'wakes her up' but the actual communication isn't there...

          I will pm you because there is so much more! lol

          Good luck with her! Sometimes it seems overwhelming with a greeny, but if you stick to the basics she will start to get it...
          I am awaiting your PM...I am printing this out so I can keep going over it in my head.

          Thank you for being so encouraging

          Comment


          • #6
            For green horses I regulate their tempo by singing jingle bells at the speed I want them to trot - then posting to that "Jingle Bell" speed. Even if the horse is trotting 500 MPH you keep posting at 5 mph and eventually horse will match your tempo. The singing helps (espeecially green horses) to hear the expected tempo and match it to your posting.
            Now in Kentucky

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Valentina_32926 View Post
              For green horses I regulate their tempo by singing jingle bells at the speed I want them to trot - then posting to that "Jingle Bell" speed. Even if the horse is trotting 500 MPH you keep posting at 5 mph and eventually horse will match your tempo. The singing helps (espeecially green horses) to hear the expected tempo and match it to your posting.
              That's funny...I used to sing 'Jingle Bells " while I trotted my "greenie" years ago. You brought back memories.

              May I put my 2 cents in as far as rhythm in the trot?.
              When you are longing your horse make sure that his trot is in the rhythm that you want when you are riding the working trot.Horses get used to routines and trotting "in rhythm" will become routine for him if you are consistant in your training longeing or riding.
              Last edited by Deepinmanure; Dec. 20, 2010, 12:05 PM. Reason: wrong emotacom

              Comment


              • #8
                Yes, YOU control the speed & rhythm through your seat. Post sloooow -- I tell students to sit down as if their bottom is sore -- sit slooowly.

                The spirals in & out are a good idea. Ride smaller circles if your youngster can handle them. Smaller circles help slow & focus the horse. 12 or 15 Meter circles -- 10's might be too much yet. Determine to ride a smaller circle at every compass point, then continue to the next compass point, ride a smaller circle, etc.

                Sometimes it's hard to see the forest for the trees when riding a greenie. Remember to sit tall -- and sit even taller when you're asking for slow or a down transition. Lift that sternum!

                Ride lots of transitions from trot to walk BEFORE she gets up a head of steam and goes chugging around the RP at full speed. She'll figure it out and transitions are another way to get her to focus.

                Work on your own core strength. It helps your ability to implement half-halts (and therefore speed control) with your seat alone.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I will add that you might want to develop a voice command to slow down any gait. When you lunge, your body language will influence your horse.

                  Head up, shoulders back, chest up, eyes on the horse, body square to the horse, leading hand with the lunge line out away from your body, whip hand out away from your body, not turning but walking in a bit of a circle with big steps = GO to a horse.

                  If you drop your head, shoulders, chest, look down, turn a bit sideways [shoulder to the horse, not chest], hands close to the body, pivot in place = SLOW to a horse.

                  Add the word "Easy" in a sing-song tone of voice with a lot of extra vowels, and a downward inflection, not crisp as in "Walk On" or "Trrrooottt".

                  Once you have developed the voice command you can use it to reinforce your aids. This will help teach her to relax.

                  Smart horses pick up on body language and tone of voice very quickly.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    If you are working in a rising trot - SIT LONGER. Stay behind her trot and use your weight to shift her onto her hind legs. Wait for the saddle to push you up and stay close to the saddle.
                    Summit Sporthorses Ltd. Inc.
                    "Breeding Competition Partners & Lifelong Friends"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Maybe because she is half PasoFino she will not be able to have a slow, floaty trot.

                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SYWXf...eature=related

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        One more suggestion to try in addition to the others, and depending on the situation. If you are finding that you are not able to regulate the trot or the horse keeps speeding up on you dispite best efforts, make her trot a 10 m circle (or smaller depending) with bending and inside flexion. This will make the horse think of something else other than moving forward fast and on the forehand. Continue on straight and if the horse speeds up again dispite regulating with the seat, put her into another smalll circle. This also helps with getting them more engaged on the hind end, and makes the horse more willing to listen to the aids as they are expecting another command.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Ha, I had the same issue with my green mare! My lessons were built around exaggerating the down phase of the posting (like a full body half halt), also doing the "spiral in, spiral out" exercise made her have to pay some attention to me... And a lot of it was just insisting, going in with the mindset that she CAN and WILL do it, not that she is a baby and doesn't know any better . I also tend to keep her very busy with lots of changes of direction and transitions. Putting the flash on also made a big difference for the stability of the bit. Make sure you keep your leg ON, it's a natural tendency to want to try to keep your legs off her. Keeping your legs on is essential to give you access to her body.
                          Last edited by InsideLeg2OutsideRein; Dec. 20, 2010, 02:31 PM.
                          "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Originally posted by ToN Farm View Post
                            Maybe because she is half PasoFino she will not be able to have a slow, floaty trot.

                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SYWXf...eature=related
                            I was first thinking this as well, but she does slow down, and even when she is fast, its not a trot like in the video, its much more extended. After we have rode for awhile and she is more focused she will go into a slow trot, perfect with my rythem.

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              I will posting a video of her in the roundpen later today :-)

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Beasmom View Post
                                Ride lots of transitions from trot to walk BEFORE she gets up a head of steam and goes chugging around the RP at full speed. She'll figure it out and transitions are another way to get her to focus.

                                Work on your own core strength. It helps your ability to implement half-halts (and therefore speed control) with your seat alone.
                                This

                                I could never get the concept of sitting longer until I stopped thinking of sticking my bottom to the saddle but instead resisted the rise by engaging my hip flexors. Traditional crunches don't do much to strengthen them, leg lifts work better.

                                When you can ride in a straight line try caveletti. She will have to think about what she's doing rather than just zip along.

                                The downside to lunging a horse to let her blow off steam is that it will start to take longer and longer to blow off steam as she gets fitter and fitter
                                I wasn't always a Smurf
                                Penmerryl's Sophie RIDSH
                                "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                                The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Beasmom View Post
                                  Yes, YOU control the speed & rhythm through your seat. Post sloooow -- I tell students to sit down as if their bottom is sore -- sit slooowly.

                                  The spirals in & out are a good idea. Ride smaller circles if your youngster can handle them. Smaller circles help slow & focus the horse. 12 or 15 Meter circles -- 10's might be too much yet. Determine to ride a smaller circle at every compass point, then continue to the next compass point, ride a smaller circle, etc.

                                  Sometimes it's hard to see the forest for the trees when riding a greenie. Remember to sit tall -- and sit even taller when you're asking for slow or a down transition. Lift that sternum!

                                  Ride lots of transitions from trot to walk BEFORE she gets up a head of steam and goes chugging around the RP at full speed. She'll figure it out and transitions are another way to get her to focus.

                                  Work on your own core strength. It helps your ability to implement half-halts (and therefore speed control) with your seat alone.

                                  this and if it was me as we dont round pen in uk

                                  i would rahter teach ahorse to go straight as then they are more forward and are able to balance themselves a lot easier

                                  go here fr helpful tips read all of page one i also explain how to do the hh and how to do this with a new horse or a youngster than doesnt know
                                  any new strides are always done in walk 1st
                                  http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...d.php?t=178116

                                  also rtry to ride between leg and hand and indepedant seat dont relay on your crop for a faster movement if you was my student i take it away and make you use you seat and legs and keep of the head end

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by carolprudm View Post
                                    The downside to lunging a horse to let her blow off steam is that it will start to take longer and longer to blow off steam as she gets fitter and fitter
                                    Totally agree, you may be actually working against your best interests relying on lunging before you ride. Some sensitive horses actually just get riled up, then you end up lunging more and more, and the horse becomes more fit. Maybe try doing low key groundwork to get your horse listening, then get on.
                                    On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      i am going to slightly disagree with PP and Beasmom. I have a very hot/energetic and forward horse. lunging her before i ride is what allows her to focus, burn some energy, get the kinks out and be ready to be ridden.

                                      i have never found that i needed more time - in fact i ended up needing less because she learned to focus and be drivable sooner.... when i first started lunging her way back when i complained to my trainer that she would just get more fit.... he just shook his head at me... lol.... and he proved to be right.

                                      also, for a horse that is very emotional,doing lots of transition scan really rev them up. i have had great success with circles and bended lines... but keeping the curves to a degree the horse can balance on and not get out of balance because that tends to set them off and make them go faster.

                                      serpentines are great because of the change in direction.

                                      i learned with my mare when she was young to just count 1,2,1,2,1,2 and to this day if i count she will immediately match my count ...

                                      also if she is paso there is inherent tendencies that may not be possible to counteract.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I'm going to agree with mbm. Lunging a greenie meanie is the best thing you can do for them until they reach a point you have their attention. It is so much better to let them fight against themselves on the lunge, than for you to have to have a running battle that you are forced to win. Winning battles is not really productive if you must escalate the force of the riding in order to do so.

                                        I am also going to agree with TonF. I see a Paso running gait in that video. You might do better to find a Paso trainer and get his/her opinion about your options. This horse might be happier as a gaited horse.

                                        Comment

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