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Is it my fault if...

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  • Is it my fault if...

    I trot ahead a bit and your horse dances and jigs and is a PITA to ride?

    Here's the background: riding on a road, 6 people. Woman with gaited pony goes quite a ways ahead of the group on the way home. Horses are moving faster to begin with just bc we are headed home. And of course they all want to keep up with pony who will surely beat them home and eat all the hay. At some point I let my STB move out a little and of course we pull ahead a bit. My son is on my Morab mare and manages to keep up with the occasional few strides of trotting. After awhile we catch up to gaited pony, then we all wait for the others, then gaited pony goes ahead again.

    I am trying to slow my mare but she is tall and walks fast and I am only going to hold her back so much. Come on, the tiny
    Morab is keeping up! Meanwhile, someone is growing cranky bc his horse is wanting to trot/jig/whatever and he does not want to keep fighting it. (This is a big horse, he could walk out and keep up). He wants everyone to be by him so his horse settles down and he can drink his beer. I know I am being partially blamed, as well as the rider of the gaited pony.

    At some point the 5 of us are fairly together and Mr. Cranky has to pee. He makes some snippy comment about not bothering to wait bc nobody else does, and I say something like, "Oh come on, deal with it, It's not the end of the world." And get an "Eff you" in return.

    This has been an issue since last year. His horse is often not happy unless it is in front, but he blames everyone else. The green rider I bring along, my horses, someone else's horse, etc. We all just bite our tongues, but today I couldn't do it. Thought I was trying to be lighthearted, but guess not.

    Is it really everyone's responsibility to be that accomodating, or should he suck it up a little and use it as a training experience? My horse was fighting me too, but I chose to ride her rather than blame someone else.

  • #2
    The rule I grew up with was that you accomodated the slowest, least able rider. I guess the rule was partly so you didn't have to end your ride and go get help for said least able rider if they ended up falling off.

    I've had to stay with an injured person while everybody else took off to get help because some yahoo decided to show off and run up onto her horses' butt and she couldn't handle her horse, and it really isn't the way I had planned my ride to end up.

    If you are in a group ride where folks are drinking and the alchohol starts talking then maybe it's time to pick a different group with a more similar speed and style.
    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
    Incredible Invisible

    Comment


    • #3
      In my experience it is generally considered discourteous to move ahead like you described. If you are in control of your horse you don't need to go at the horse's chosen speed returning to the barn. "I am trying to slow my mare but she is tall and walks fast ".

      This probably isn't what you wanted to hear but realize that trail riding is more difficult than riding in a ring where the horse may be bored and not showing his true colors. A good trail rider is a rider that quietly maintains control of his horse or breaks off on his own in a direction that does not excite the other horses.

      For me it is better to ride alone than with riders not in control of their horses. Frankly, your whole group sounds like they need some remedial riding lessons.

      Comment


      • #4
        While it might not be your "fault," it is certainly an appreciated kindness to accommodate the person whose horse is getting anxious. I know because that is always my horse.

        My horse gets seriously scary. I need to walk (not trot, not jig), and I need whoever is riding with me to stay with me. My fear is not just "I don't want to fight him;" it's real fear, as in fear for my life.

        And, yes, I know the argument "don't go out if your horse isn't safe." I rarely go out. Most fellow-riders think I'm a wimp and pressure me incessently to go out with them despite the fact that I don't feel my horse is safe out there. It's quite a Catch-22.

        I would never ride with somebody drinking beer on the trail. (I need serious riders around me.) I would never ride with somebody who said "eff you" to me. (I need friends around me.) I would also not blame you for my horse's issues.

        But, in general, try to have mercy on the guy with the anxious horse.
        I have a Fjord! Life With Oden

        Comment


        • #5
          In answer to your question, no it's not your fault if you ride ahead and someone else's horse starts jigging, etc., but...to keep the peace, and so everyone (including the PITA horse's rider) can have a pleasant and safe ride, it is considered courteous and good manners, to stay with the group.

          That being said, if you don't enjoy riding at that speed (or if you are unable to rate your horse slower), then perhaps you shouldn't ride with that person. Everyone might be happier, including you, if you rode with people who like going faster or are better able to control their horses.

          It's a matter of preference, often. Not necessarily riding experience. Case in point: I belong to two trail riding groups, both with experienced riders and conditioned horses, and both groups prefer rides that are 6-8 hours a day. One group does not like to go faster than 3 or 4 miles per hour because their horses will break into a trot, so I ride at their pace--my gaited horse rates just fine. I also ride with a gaited group and they like to gait fast--11 mph or more--for hours sometimes, and I enjoy riding with them too and expect to go fast when with them. Interestingly, both groups cover about the same mileage on their rides. The slower group stops very infrequently and the faster group needs to rest their horses more often and for longer because of the fast pace.

          Comment


          • #6
            It is generally accepted that when riding in a group you all stay to the speed of the slowest, least able rider. That being said I generally try to choose people to ride with whose riding style is similar to mine. I don't mind the occassional ride with a slower horse/rider combo but I don't enjoy those rides nearly as much as I do when I ride with group of people who like to ride a the same pace as I do.
            "My biggest fear is that when I die my husband is going to try to sell all my horses and tack for what I told him they cost."

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Nin, I totally understand your point. My gelding can have days where he can be scary if people decide to lope and the group gets more wound up than normal. I would never ride ahead if someone were having a dangerous issue, and neither would the person who was ahead of me. This was a matter of being pissy bc he wanted a perfect ride on a loose rein. Probably wasn't going to happen on the way home, regardless of whether anyone was in front. Horse isn't anxious, just wants his way. Which presents a problem either way, I know.

              The least experienced person in the group was my son, who was having no issues. I do agree with those of you who said it is discourteous-I will admit it was. But even when I was riding with the group his horse was doing this. And then he was blaming the person who was way in front of us. I just thought he should suck it up and deal with it. He wasn't the only one whose horse wanted to go. (I'll also agree with the poster who said we need riding lessons. I've had them and am currently taking lessons. That's also one of my gripes with this person.)

              This was an issue last year as well. It was always someone's fault. Maybe that is why today I said "screw it" and moved ahead briefly. Ok, I vow to be better behaved, but not to refrain from comments like the one I made. Bc usually I do bite my tongue, but I couldn't do it any more.

              Comment


              • #8
                What the others have said.

                Sounds to me as if you need to find another group to ride with if you want to come in happy from your rides.
                I also don't want to ride with beer drinkers. Maybe if that man wasn't busy slurping beer he could handle his horse better.
                You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by pj View Post
                  What the others have said.

                  Sounds to me as if you need to find another group to ride with if you want to come in happy from your rides.
                  I also don't want to ride with beer drinkers. Maybe if that man wasn't busy slurping beer he could handle his horse better.
                  Amen
                  "My biggest fear is that when I die my husband is going to try to sell all my horses and tack for what I told him they cost."

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It could simply be a matter of it is easier to blame other people and sit back and have a bear than it is to learn to ride....He may not care...

                    If you don't like the company, ride with someone else.

                    I don't mix alcohol and horses. I don't ride with those that do. I won't....

                    Life is too short to ride with folks like that. If you don't enjoy it, find someone else!
                    Life is too short to argue with a mare! Just don't engage! It is much easier that way!

                    Have fun, be safe, and let the mare think it is her idea!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I don't ride with people who can't handle their horse and their beer. One must be able to master both to ride with me

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        katarine, hehehe, you are so wise. I had one beer at the bar when we stopped for lunch. I don't even try to have one while riding bc I can go without, and the horse always realizes I am down to one hand. I was annoyed for various reasons-one being that he should know his horse is going to do this on the way home, so maybe he should be prepared. And hold off on more beer until he gets home.

                        I'm in a trail riding club and have no problems with anyone else. This is my friend's husband, sooooo...

                        Hoping the blowup alerted him to some issues-riding and anger management. If it continues to be a problem I am not going to ride with him any more. And I will still be better behaved.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I concur with the others. I do ride with a large group. Some will trot out and canter a little and sometimes I want to go a little slower. I can control my horse but I am not the most confident rider. I can canter my horse SOME but he has a problem with wanting to gallop instead of canter so I am always on guard!

                          I did have to ask my hubby to slow down to a walk last week when I was having a hard time controlling my horse because the other two were going a little faster up and down some little rises and I am trying to teach Biscuit to go at the speed I set...not the one he wants or others are doing!

                          As for someone drinking and riding and telling me to eff off...oh I don't think so. Friends husband or not I wouldn't ride with them again.
                          Logging Miles with the Biscuit 530.5 Miles for 2011 visit my trail riding blog at www.dashingbigred.blogspot.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by katarine View Post
                            I don't ride with people who can't handle their horse and their beer. One must be able to master both to ride with me



                            you betcha!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              LOL well I ride a horse that can be hotter than a two dollar pistol, and he's not an Arabian or anything, just a garden variety TWH. When he's feeling HOT, I'd rather the bunch not just up and leave me w/o warning. He will get very upset and anxious. Whether I'm holding holy water or a cold beer, manners dictate you check with the folks behind you before moving out. You just do. And if they say gimme til X bend in the trail, then honor that, Do it. Let me finish my holy water, get set, and I'll either come along, or manage my requests that my own horse chill and settle.

                              BUT...

                              If they say no, you guys don't speed up til we get to the barn/ the horse trailer/the end of time and No, I'm not riding a baby and no I'm not hurt, I'm basically just a sorry rider on a half trained horse with 2-3 cold beers in my future and zero interest in managing my OWN animal, somehow it takes a village or some such: welll... I'm potentially going to be situationally...deaf.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                [QUOTE]
                                Originally posted by cloudy18 View Post
                                I trot ahead a bit and your horse dances and jigs and is a PITA to ride?

                                Here's the background: riding on a road, 6 people. Woman with gaited pony goes quite a ways ahead of the group on the way home. Horses are moving faster to begin with just bc we are headed home.
                                your inability to maintain the same sped due to "going home" is certainly a flaw in your horses training.

                                Is it really everyone's responsibility to be that accommodating, or should he suck it up a little and use it as a training experience? My horse was fighting me too, but I chose to ride her rather than blame someone else.
                                that four/five of you choose to let your horses fly along setting a poor example for what may be a more timid rider speaks poorly of all if you,yes. If you cannot control your horses speed then maybe you should stay behind.

                                Tamara
                                Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
                                I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Those whose horses want to speed up just due to heading home have horses that wouldn't pass as "broke" around here...sorry but the horse doesn't choose the speed or direction in which we ride...it may be a partnership but there's a managing partner and that's not the horse. It is poor trail manners to leave someone behind whose horse is having an anxiety attack over being left....not all horses in any single group are going to be trained to the same level and it would seem sensible for those with better trained horses to help out with those who may need help. In addition...those who do allow their horses to speed up just due to heading home are training their own horse in a bad habit...it is a form of barn sourness if your horse has to jig or fuss just for a change in direction toward home. And no, drinking and riding is as dumb as drinking and driving but there will be those that do it....it is not very sensible to leave someone who is impaired in any way just because what they did was dumb.
                                  Colored Cowhorse Ranch
                                  www.coloredcowhorseranch.com
                                  Northern NV

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by PRS View Post
                                    It is generally accepted that when riding in a group you all stay to the speed of the slowest, least able rider. That being said I generally try to choose people to ride with whose riding style is similar to mine. I don't mind the occassional ride with a slower horse/rider combo but I don't enjoy those rides nearly as much as I do when I ride with group of people who like to ride a the same pace as I do.
                                    This.

                                    I've been on plenty of trail rides where I wanted to do trotting and cantering but because we had someone who only wanted to walk...well. We walked. If you want to trot or canter, you have to ensure you're going out with people who want to trot and canter too. It's extremely poor form to ride away from a member of your group just because they're going slower than you want to.
                                    The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
                                    Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      [QUOTE=Tamara in TN;5496255]

                                      that four/five of you choose to let your horses fly along setting a poor example for what may be a more timid rider speaks poorly of all if you,yes. If you cannot control your horses speed then maybe you should stay behind.

                                      Tamara
                                      Just to clarify, though I have accepted my bad part in the whole mess, there were not 4 or 5 of us flying along, and the rider is not timid. There was one rider ahead quite a bit of the time, and then I was ahead for maybe 10 minutes of the ride, and my son was with me. That left three horses back. He wasn't alone and I never would have left him alone, or even at all if I knew his horse was behaving dangerously or scaring him. Not clarifying this to defend myself either, but I don't want people to think the group bolted away and left someone in the dust, clinging to the saddle for their life.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by PRS View Post
                                        It is generally accepted that when riding in a group you all stay to the speed of the slowest, least able rider. That being said I generally try to choose people to ride with whose riding style is similar to mine.
                                        Ditto this, plus one additional observation. When I ride with groups of friends, we'll usually separate into slower and faster groups for parts of the ride, then meet up further down the trail. This allows those who want a faster ride to get their yayas out, while others can do a relaxed walking ride safely.

                                        Once we're heading back to the barn or trailhead, though, we all walk together and don't allow the horses to rush home. That's a bad habit that can cause some real wrecks...

                                        I don't know if it's "your fault" or not. I DO know that I would not keep riding with a beer-drinking lout, no matter who's husband he is.

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