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OTTB that takes the bit and runs at the jumps

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  • #41
    I have a similar problem with my pony. She tends to rush fences. I've been told to pretty much ride her on the buckle but the problem is that even in trot poles with like no contact she rushes and doesn't pay attention at all where she is putting her feet. In trying to do what I was told she ended up taking of from the canter pole a couple feet in front of the jump. Disaster waiting to happen! I'm trying to ride her on a lighter contact but I can't just throw her away like I'm being told (by people that don't ride her, and have only seen her ridden the one time and in video. They then got on to show/prove their point. Yes, she slowed down. BUT what I really wanted to point out is that the two of them are anywhere from 50-100lbs heavier than I am on a 12hd pony. So of course she is going to slow down a little! One was like 5'10 also.) Throwing her away, in my case, doesn't solve anything and hasn't caused her to pay more attention to her feet through poles. I wish it would! So I'm trying to stick to at least a light contact where I can still half halt when I need it. I will try these exercises too. Anything that may help get her focused! I have also tried circling her near the jump almost like we are heading to it and if she stays consistent letting her go over but if she continues to rush, which she does a few strides out, then we continue to circle. There are some days we circle for a very long time just trying to get into a not frenzied pace. She is also a red head. l brought this on myself.

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    • #42
      I agree that you need more pace out of the turn so that you can SLOW DOWN to the fence. It will also mean that you are rebalancing the horse on his hocks down to it instead of just hoping he doesn't go fast. If you are crawling the horse can only go faster and it might make him more insecure.

      If you have access to cavalettis I think two of them as a bounce (10') is a great exercise to keep horses back on their butts.

      A line of them (of even poles) where you trot or canter in, trot or halt, continue out, would probably help a lot too.

      Don't be afraid to sit him on his butt once in a while. But at least make sure he has the impulsion to jump without speeding up first.

      Lovely horse, by the way!
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      "I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of stars makes me dream." --Vincent Van Gogh

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      • #43
        I have ridden him in the following bits (in is order over the course of 2 years): kk ultra - too much movement with the key mouthpiece. Mullen mouth 3 ring ( no turning power when h e was crazy)., fat rubber full cheek snaffle, fat plain metal d, hard black rubber gag (once in while), Myler d. I've tried I. Randomly in other d rings...one with a copper mouthpiece n the middle, etc. the less joints, the better. I think that is why he goes well in the Myler.


        Based on just these bits you have mentioned, I am going to go out on a long shot here. Several years ago, I had a big 17h TB. Pulling wasn't even the right word. He was a Mack truck and the hardest animal to ride. Before I got him he was in a segunda and out of control. I don't believe in ported bits so I started switching when I got him. Kimberwicke, pelham, 3 ring elevator, slow twist eggbutt, you name it, we tried it. I remember this unorthodox trainer saying he felt that the bit was the issue. I didn't believe him. He put the horse in a featherweight hollow mouth loose ring snaffle. I was scared to death to watch the guy ride and he took him over a 4'6" course and the horse was perfect. The horse was not the type that did well with contact, bracing or any type of hands really. He needed to be ridden off the seat.

        I had to ride with impulsion and about 4 strides before the fence, the half seat was gone, I sat up and sat back and rode on and it all went well.

        Your videos look nice but you do begin to lean forward 3-4 strides before. Try sitting down and sitting up and see how that works.

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        • #44
          Whoops! That first paragraph was supposed to be your quote

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          • Original Poster

            #45
            Lol figured it was the quote.

            Meupatdoes....I tried the canter walk canter exercise today. He was amazing. He want perfect but oh my god he got so soft. I made sure I never let my body collapse and kept my hands up like i was riding a gp jumper. So good. Then I did some shortening s and lengthening on a circle. We did this exercise 2 or 3 days ago and he would shorten, but not come back from the lengthening. Today, he not only shortened, but came back within 2 strides of me asking after the lengthening. As my good friend tells me all the time...I need to stop riding him like he is green and wild (like he used to be).... She always reminds me....your horse is really broke! I wishi had a video of today's ride to show you guys!!! Thanks for the encouragement and positive reinforcement!!!! He will probably have of til the middle of next week. I'm buy tomorrow the it's supposed to get really cold... I'm so psyched to jump him...

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            • Original Poster

              #46
              Anmoro. - no, he's not a Mack truck like your guy from years ago. Not at all. He can get quite nice and soft in my hands. He only makes a bid at the jumps...and it's not every time!

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              • #47
                Originally posted by myalter1 View Post
                Lol figured it was the quote.

                Meupatdoes....I tried the canter walk canter exercise today. He was amazing. He want perfect but oh my god he got so soft. I made sure I never let my body collapse and kept my hands up like i was riding a gp jumper. So good. Then I did some shortening s and lengthening on a circle. We did this exercise 2 or 3 days ago and he would shorten, but not come back from the lengthening. Today, he not only shortened, but came back within 2 strides of me asking after the lengthening. As my good friend tells me all the time...I need to stop riding him like he is green and wild (like he used to be).... She always reminds me....your horse is really broke! I wishi had a video of today's ride to show you guys!!! Thanks for the encouragement and positive reinforcement!!!! He will probably have of til the middle of next week. I'm buy tomorrow the it's supposed to get really cold... I'm so psyched to jump him...

                Sounds like you had a great ride. Keep practicing those transitions and that lengthening and shortening. Those are your control buttons. While you want a prompt response from your horse to your cues, really focus on the quality of the transition rather than just the quickness or number of them you can do. This is true for any horse, but in particular the smart, sensitive type that likes to anticipate. They are already thinking "let's do it NOW!" so you have to be the calm voice saying, "lets do it like this". Doing "busy work" that is abrupt can certainly make hot horses hotter, but thoughtful, consistently cued work can actually have quite a good effect on them.

                Once you have these controls well established you can incorporate them into your jumping. Of course this can apply before the jumps, but don't forget about after. In watching my trainer school horses and teach lessons lately, he has put emphasis on schooling the canter after the jump. It is so easy to go into "thank god I made it, I can stop riding" mode.......or the "oh $/!@ I am getting run away with lets make all sorts of desperate moves I would never do on the flat". So after the jump do some lengthening and shortening. Only when you get him responding and giving you the canter you want, should you do your (quality) walk transition. If he is strong after the jump and likes to dive through the corner, make him shorten in a straight line and then turn. If you get run away with, don't panic but go back to the same cues you use on the flat and don't give up....when he finally responds, don't just take a relief break, but lengthen again for a few strides and ask for the shorten....you want to get it back to your normal prompt response out of the flat work. Doing this type of work obviously makes it easier to incorporate multiple jumps, but it can also have a nice side effect on the approach to the jump, as it puts something more than only "getting to the other side" in both of your minds.

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                • Original Poster

                  #48
                  Pally, I can't copy your second paragraph on my iPad, but lol. So true. That panic..the thank god I made it.. Lol totally know that feeling....

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    You are a lovely rider, and you and I share the same love for the long spot! I agree with those who see you making too much a of a move with your body. I always have to think "heels forward" to keep myself from crawling up the neck like I want. It doesn't help that I have a long torso.

                    Watching the video, I don't think your horse is using his back end much at all. In the more recent video, when you trotted, he wasn't tracking up behind like he should. He looked to me like a horse who didn't really want to use his stifles and hocks.

                    I know you said you don't have an outdoor, but do you have any way of hacking out, particularly over hilly country? I'd start just with walking, but if he's a good citizen about being out and about, make it an active walk. That will build up his back end and freshen his brain a bit.

                    Right now I think he's just going along on his forehand and letting his back end trail out behind him. So when he sees a jump, he uses pace to compensate.

                    Now, I did use to ride a jumper who was really difficult at lines. He would see that second jump and just roar down to it. He was a blacktype stakes winner at the track, and he sure knew his job. Luckily, being a jumper, he didn't have to do too many lines, but I couldn't even let him think we were going to a jump until about three strides away. I'd have to keep his eyes somewhere else until the last moment.

                    At home, he did very few courses, but a LOT of gymnastics!
                    Life would be infinitely better if pinatas suddenly appeared throughout the day.

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                    • #50
                      Have you also tried jumping him on a longe line? This way he will have to figure out pace and distance without a person on his back. My trainer uses this exercise for all her green horses and it's amazing to watch them figure things out (not to mention how much calmer they are with no person on them! ).
                      Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

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                      • #51
                        I haven't read all this so this may've been suggested already and poo-pooed or whatever but....

                        BNT I used to work with did LOTS of OTTBs making them into top notch hunters. One of her go tos to settle out a horse like this was to put a jump or two on a BIG circle. Start with standards and a pole on the ground. Horse goes into big settled out lopey canter outside of the big circle inside of the big circle, the whole ring...doesn't matter. Incorporate the rail on the ground and don't raise it until the horse canters over it in a quiet manner. You gradually increase the height as the horse can handle it settled.

                        Make sure to not just stay on the big circle but do simple changes, change direction, etc. and don't over drill it. I've seen this method work with some OTTBs who got really rushy at the jumps. Good luck with your critter.

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                        • #52
                          Watching your videos, I didn't see a horse taking the bit and running at the jumps. He does look like he is on his forehand and behind the vertical at times. Raise your hands and push him forward so he is in front of your leg. Don't confuse behind the vertical for being soft. I think once you get a canter where he is coming from behind more, it will all fall into place. If you have time, watch the George Morris clinic on usef.com. There are several horses that are low and on their forehand, he has the riders lift their hands, and describes the half halt as lifting a rock. He also has the riders turn after the fence into the railing when the horses are rushing and taking over. BTW, your horse is lovely!

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                          • Original Poster

                            #53
                            Serendipity, lol I know. Theses were the good videos. I don't have any with him taking the bit...I don't confuse. Wing soft with being behind the vertical....in the August video, he was very behind the vertical....since then, he has gotten MUCH more up in front. Thank you for saying he is lovely... The videos really don't do him justice. I'm proud of the work k have done with him. He was not easy. This time last year, he couldnt even canter around think ring once. No joke.

                            Sing Mia; no, he doesn't track under like he should...but he is using himself much better than he used to! It just takes him a little more time. He's had his stifles injected, and the vet is sure he has some arthritis in his hocks, so I don't ever really expect a stellar mover behind. He used to move pretty good up front when he wore aluminums..but I'm too cheap for those now! Lol

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                            • #54
                              Have you had his eyes checked? A tb mare i leased would have a wonderful beautiful canter and two or three strides away would take off and run at the jump. She never spooked otherwise! Turns out she had some sort of progressive blindness. I don't remember for sure (I was a teen) and my parents sent her home. Just a thought.
                              My trainer just drilled "try to fit in as many strides as possible before the jump" and sit up. I see that you do get forward a few strides before the jump. Try to stay tall and back. Even if you get left a few times its not the end of the world if the jumps are small.

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                              • Original Poster

                                #55
                                He's been checked and is ok. He used to get headaches but once he started regular chiro he's been great.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  Sorry if this has been stated, I did not read all 3 pages. My guy would grab the bit when he needed his teeth floated. It would come out of the blue and I would ponder the problem and then have his teeth checked, and he would have a tooth issue. There also was a particular bit I called it the "puzzle bit" that he ould collapse in his mouth and run with that created that behavior.

                                  He is retired now, but good luck.

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                                  • #57
                                    I have a horse that will NOT trot like a sophisticated individual over 3 poles in a line. He will canter over them like an idiot and trip himself up every time! He's a big goof, so I laugh it off! He is really green, and 20 years old, so he's not going anywhere, and I just roll my eyes and ask him to back off. haha!!

                                    I would say try cantering your horse in circles towards the fence, canter a small circle where you cross the approach line, until he can canter and not rush in that direction, and slowly let him go a little further towards the fence, and when he tries to grab the bit and run, circle him again, keep doing this until you can get close to the fence and then canter away from it and go like you're approaching it again. I'd keep doing this until he can trot or canter down the approach line like a sophisticated member of society, lol!

                                    Or you could trot him towards say, a small vertical, and then when he speeds up, pull him to a halt on the line (if you have installed nice brakes, I know how OTTB's can have worn brakes!), make him stand for a few seconds, and continue on, if he rushes again, pull him to a halt again. Then trot ahead and jump the fence.
                                    I did this with my leased Connemera who would rush towards the fences, and she now will canter or trot like a normal member of society towards them, haha!!

                                    I am just now starting to trot my OTTB a bit, so I'm not an expert with them, but I've had multiple instructors use this technique with rushing horses, including my sister's OTTB.

                                    Good luck!!

                                    TBHJ
                                    ~Buy an OTTB, Save a Life, Gain a Forever Bond.~
                                    Let's say NO to Kill Buyers

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                                    • Original Poster

                                      #58
                                      my horse has kick ass breaks... NOW. LOL i had to install them as far as teeth, he has them done RELIGIOUSLY every 6 months...

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