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trainers/students:has anyone heard of this?

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  • trainers/students:has anyone heard of this?

    A "trainer" at the farm where I board has students work on a lunge line frequently. One of her exercises is to have the student work without stirrups or reins. Often, she will have the student unbuckle the end of the reins and then buckle them around their waist. I have been riding and around horses most of my life and had never seen this done before. It looks extremely dangerous as many of her students are beginner/intermediate riders with questionable seats and balance. Every time I see this I worry what would happen if the horse were to jump or spook and the kid is attached to the horse's face from their waist! It is also hard to watch the poor horses get their faces pulled on with each bounce!

    This has been bothering me for awhile, and I was wondering has anyone else ever heard of this? (thanks also for reading my first-time posting here )

  • #2
    Attaching any part of the rider to any part of the horse or tack is dangerous and...well...stupid.

    Just because a "trainer person" does it, does not make it any less stupid.

    And welcome to COTH. Be brave, we don't bite. Hard anyway.
    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


    • #3
      I can not even imagine how this works.....If I put the reins around my waist it would make it so there was a constant pull on my horses mouth....Are they using really long reins?

      Besides the fact that I don't understand how the hell you do that, it is completely stupid. That is a recipee for disaster!

      Working on a lunge line with no reins or no stirrups is one thing, but ATTACHING the reins behind the waist it ridiculous. What is the point of that even??


      • #4
        And what is her reason for this dangerous practice? if it is to keep reins from falling forward on horses neck, please show her a few ways to do this without involving any part of the riders body! I regularly lunge riders but would NEVER do this! After seeing a terrible accident at the state 4-H show where reins got around a childs neck when pony refused and she fell forward, she was drug until unconcious. Luckily pony was caught (he was in a blind panic) and she was fine, but could have been horrible outcome. Of course, this could happen to anyone, BUT doing what they are doing increases the likelyhood of riders becming tangled in the reins if they fell


        • #5
          For the OP here, tread lightly of you try to say anything about this to the "trainer" if you are a boarder.

          Maybe something like "aren't you worried she'll get hung up if the pony stumbles or spooks and she falls"???

          In a boarding barn, you have to balance how much you want to stay with speaking up to those in "authority".

          Me? I couldn't keep my mouth shut about something as boneheaded as this. Have the friend with the trailer standing by though.
          When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

          The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


          • Original Poster

            The reins were normal length from what I could tell, although the horse is smaller (maybe 15.1, and short necked) the rider was an average sized teen age girl. There was tension in the reins and the horse had constant contact and pulling on his mouth.

            I have no idea what she is thinking. I have seen plenty of exercises on the lunge line, but always with the reins tied up correctly, or just taken off the bridle.


            • #7
              My opinion is that is absolutely insane and completely negligent should anything happen and cause an injury.
              McDowell Racing Stables

              Home Away From Home


              • #8
                bar.ka here

                bar.ka call this the dr.awn & quar.tered techniqu.e.

                l8r we ta.lk about the dragg.ed. and tatter.ed techniqu.e.

                here at No Child Left Behind Stables we perfer teh dragg.ed. and tatter.ed method.


                • #9
                  I'll assume you are asking a genuine question, not stirring some local pot very indirectly and very publicly. (We have seen lots of that around here lately. FYI)

                  No, I have never seen this done. Ever.

                  I can't imagine how it would work except for a little kid on a small pony.... maybe with regular, horse-length reins. I don't think I could buckle the reins around my back without pulling my horse's nose in hard.

                  Yes, I think it sounds wildly unsafe.

                  I guess I'd say that politely and only once to the trainer. I might say it to the kid's parent. Again, just once and politely. IMO, that's all you get.
                  The armchair saddler
                  Politically Pro-Cat


                  • #10
                    This is up there as one of the dumber things I've heard. I can't imagine the reasoning for such a thing. Never mind the fact that having the reins attached to your person while riding is pretty stupid, I imagine the horse must be awfully uncomfortable. Must be a very short-necked horse and very thin rider! I would start by asking the trainer to explain why she does this particular "exercise" and go from there.


                    • Original Poster

                      findeight, such great advice about boarding! I have been just watching, keeping my mouth shut, and doing my own thing. I am worried about her students though, and am amazed at how many people listen to this "trainer".

                      I thought it would be a good idea to get some opinions and advice here before (or if) I do say anything


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by CarolinaRider View Post

                        I have no idea what she is thinking.
                        I think we can safely assume there is no thought process involved here.
                        When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                        The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


                        • #13
                          It's not hard to imagine the reins getting caught around the rider's neck if the horse were to spook or fall.

                          Many parents have no idea how dangerous this is and are trusting their child's safety to this "trainer".

                          This is horrifying.
                          ~ Citizens for a Kinder, Gentler COTH...our mantra: Be nice. ~


                          • Original Poster

                            mvp, unfortunately, it is a very real and genuine question...no pot stirring here! I prefer a drama-free horse environment.

                            It has just been something that has been bothering me and I had never seen or heard of before...I wanted to make sure that I am not the crazy one !


                            • #15
                              As a muggle mom, I definitely wouldn't have realized how dangerous this "technique" is when my DD first started riding. If there is any way possible to alert the parents or the BO, please do before a tragedy occurs.


                              • #16
                                What is a muggle mom? I'm going now to google it but....
                                Stoneybrook Farm Afton TN


                                • #17
                                  This is insanely dangerous. Is it something you can bring to the attention of the barn owner/manager?


                                  • Original Poster

                                    After reading these responses I think I should say something. It will really bother me if I do not and something terrible happens. I think I will delicately bring it up with the owner of the farm.


                                    • #19
                                      Muggle Mom is my made up term to describe myself as a naive mother of a horse-crazy kid. The word muggle I stole from the Harry Potter books.


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by tidy rabbit View Post
                                        What is a muggle mom? I'm going now to google it but....
                                        I'm assuming it is a reference to Harry Potter... muggles are the normal people who don't have the magic, so to speak.