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cross cantering and why

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  • cross cantering and why

    In a nut shell, I have a horse that can do clean changes in the field and never has a problem in the flat work (dressage.) I've had a vet who is a choropractor/acupuncturist come twice and found some things the first time and almost nothing the next time. She's sound, but when we do stadium, she starts swapping leads, counter cantering and generally turns into a discombobulated horse. This did not change after the adjustment. She's a super jumper and this doesn't happen xc, only in stadium.

    Anyone have a horse that gets sooo excited, they turn into a mess in stadium. My regular vet is coming out to see again if we can find something. This is a different vet from the chiropractor.
    RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

    "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

  • #2
    Please don't be offended, but I would look at the rider if it only happens in stadium. Is the rider stiff due to nerves? Does the rider tend to pinch with their knees in stadium/turns? Does the rider tend to have a stronger side, so tends to sit more on one seatbone, or use one rein more so the horse throws his shoulder/hip out?

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    • #3
      Is this only at shows or at home? I have seen it be a balance problem inside the ring when the horse wouldn't do it outside.
      http://community.webshots.com/user/jenn52318

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      • Original Poster

        #4
        Originally posted by jetsmom View Post
        Please don't be offended, but I would look at the rider if it only happens in stadium. Is the rider stiff due to nerves? Does the rider tend to pinch with their knees in stadium/turns? Does the rider tend to have a stronger side, so tends to sit more on one seatbone, or use one rein more so the horse throws his shoulder/hip out?
        No offence taken my instructor is going to ride her this week and we'll see of we can figure this out. It may be a back issue (horse's) or just a brain issue with the horse or none of the above.
        RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

        "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

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        • #5
          Any chance you're using a different saddle for stadium?

          I had a mare who always had issues with cross cantering, and it was a stifle issue for her, but it was always present.

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          • #6
            Ask your vet if it could be an issue with his sacro-iliac. If so, it might require injections (& not cantering for a few weeks) to get the inflammation out of there. I've spent most of this summer dealing w/ my horse's s.i. issue. Finally, we're jumping again!
            He was basically not able to hold his left lead in the arena (or on any circle). He'd swap leads, cross-canter while jumping, fall in severely when cantering a tight turn to the left. When I tried 'collecting' him at the canter, he'd swap leads every stride. Looked pretty, but he was really hurting.
            He could hold the lead fine for a little while if we were cantering on a straight line on a road - but not on a circle.
            I had my dressage instructor ride him too, just to make sure that I wasn't the issue.... happy to say, he still had the problem with her riding.
            There are some recent posts on SI issues in this forum, you might want to check them out.
            Last edited by Flipper; Oct. 2, 2011, 09:27 PM. Reason: Just want to add -
            Whatever you do, or dream you can, begin it; Boldness has genius, magic, and power in it ~ Goethe

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Thanks Flipper

              This is exactly where I'm heading with this horse.
              RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

              "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

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              • #8
                I had a horse who would cross canter after a jump in the ring (stadium) when she was barefoot behind. Once we put shoes on all 4, the problem went away. She had very nice tough feet and people were surprised when we put shoes on her but she needed the extra support when jumping.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Simkie View Post
                  Any chance you're using a different saddle for stadium?
                  Ditto this.

                  when you say "flat work (dressage)" do you mean a dressage saddle? If so, can the horse get changes in your jumping saddle when you are doing flatwork to warm up?

                  If no, then look to the saddle, either fit on the horse, or the position it puts you in.

                  If yes, or you're using the same saddle, then it's something to do with how you change your riding when jumps are present.
                  ______________________________
                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

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                  • #10
                    My new horse did this when I got him. Swapped CONSTANTLY, both clean and into cross-canter. In his case it seemed to be a function of anxiety and possibly an upset tummy, since the settling in process and a course of omeprazole has eliminated it. He still gets "bouncy" in SJ phases, and that is a function of green-ness, but no more swapping. It will still show up as a brief one-step swap behind, which he self-corrects, if he's tense or if I'm being too restrictive with my inside rein or asking him to be straighter than his young body can handle in the canter, but that is clearly a "me" problem.

                    In this horse's case it is a good barometer of his tension level.

                    My other horse did have an SI problem, and it manifested itself as kicking out in the canter departs and a hitchy, dropping feeling behind in the canter. Not swapping, although obviously all horses are different! That horse doesn't do swaps naturally or automatically, whereas the original one I spoke of does.
                    Click here before you buy.

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                    • #11
                      Lots of great suggestions. I wanted to add just check to be sure that during the SJ phase with tighter turns, I wonder if you could be using a lot of inside rein to turn the horse. Too much restriction on the inside rein can cause the problems you describe as well. (I know from experience, LOL!)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Flipper View Post
                        Ask your vet if it could be an issue with his sacro-iliac. If so, it might require injections (& not cantering for a few weeks) to get the inflammation out of there. I've spent most of this summer dealing w/ my horse's s.i. issue. Finally, we're jumping again!
                        He was basically not able to hold his left lead in the arena (or on any circle). He'd swap leads, cross-canter while jumping, fall in severely when cantering a tight turn to the left. When I tried 'collecting' him at the canter, he'd swap leads every stride. Looked pretty, but he was really hurting.
                        He could hold the lead fine for a little while if we were cantering on a straight line on a road - but not on a circle.
                        I had my dressage instructor ride him too, just to make sure that I wasn't the issue.... happy to say, he still had the problem with her riding.
                        There are some recent posts on SI issues in this forum, you might want to check them out.
                        Flipper.. I am having this problem too in my 6yo OTTB. I made a thread on here detailing it all, under Horse Care...but when he was swapping in the back, did he feel very unbalanced and when you asked him to collect in effort to fix it? Mine gets very strung out and uncomfortable going to the left. He swaps to the R lead in behind. when I try to collect him he just breaks to a trot. Wondering if SI is where I should focus my energy.

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