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Brilliant teaching moment!

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  • Brilliant teaching moment!

    Have a young lady that has a mental block about keeping her leg long while cueing her horse. Not just a little but actually bending her knee and raising her leg several inches. We have tried everything I thought.

    Last week I got some sidewalk chalk and put some on the heel of her boot. After showing her just one mark way above where her leg should be she kept her leg down and still much better. It was amazing!

    I had thought she didn't believe me, even with video of her doing it. Something about seeing that chalk on her horse made the difference.


  • #2
    Good job!

    Worth a few minutes of thought for me.

    Q: why do you think the chalk mark worked?

    There is a term for body awareness, something like ‘proprioception’?
    I find it fascinating.

    https://io9.gizmodo.com/sensing-your...eal-1473461740

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Luseride View Post
      Have a young lady that has a mental block about keeping her leg long while cueing her horse. Not just a little but actually bending her knee and raising her leg several inches. We have tried everything I thought.

      Last week I got some sidewalk chalk and put some on the heel of her boot. After showing her just one mark way above where her leg should be she kept her leg down and still much better. It was amazing!

      I had thought she didn't believe me, even with video of her doing it. Something about seeing that chalk on her horse made the difference.
      Interesting.

      That is what good teaching is, keep trying until you come up with something that fits that student.
      You did that, thanks for letting us know, so we can also try it if necessary.

      Can't ever have enough ideas like this one.

      A little bit different, decades ago, we were teaching 4H horsemanship club kids about leads by having them on the ground, on their own legs, gallop in one lead, then the other and later making flying changes.
      Then some modeling on their horses, the rest calling it right or left, wrong if so, developing an eye and a feel for what leads were.

      Then we realized parents were still looking clueless, so we engaged them also.
      Lots of fun ensued, when parents were trying so hard to understand what their kids had learned so fast.

      In the end, everyone learned and later we watched kids teaching other kids and even adults.
      A whole generation of western riders, already good riders, but with different skills and more seat of the pants riders, than the technical ones of training in the basics, learned about leads and so have all riders after them.

      Comment


      • #4
        Like you I tried everything with hubby not to pull and cross his left inside rein over the neck.

        Talking to him about it. Videoing it. Telling him why it wouldn't work. Talking him why the opposite worked.

        Dodge did his best to tell him that it was incorrect but not staying on the outside track and not circling.

        I tried riding beside him with a whip held vertical and told him he couldn't touch it.

        I tried making him take the rein out instead of in.

        Nothing worked. We are talking months.

        Until the day I walked beside him and when he went to pull in, I physically grabbed his hand yelled, "No" and pulled his hand out.

        That clicked. Suddenly he was not doing it any more. Suddenly Dodge was on a circle.

        I said, "See I told you it was easy".

        He replied that it was too easy. That he hadn't done anything and Dodge had just decided to do it.

        I still laugh about that sentence.
        It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.

        Comment


        • #5
          Good instruction technique!!!

          It's a common problem to have the student who doesn't "get" something and all of the common methods don't work. So, you get "creative." If chalk works, super. If grabbing the offending hand and yelling 'NO!" works then do that. I've little experience as a riding instructor but a lot as a flight instructor. I've used similar techniques where students have some "block" to learning.

          G.
          Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo

          Comment


          • #6
            I am helping a 12 year old. She is scared to jump because the horse is so pleased with himself, and puts in a little buck. She raises her leg to get into the fetal position, That makes her loose, so she slides off.

            Today I simplified it and told her to wrap her legs around the horse's belly. Of course, she cannot actually do that, but the imagery of lengthening her leg and sitting deep in the saddle suddenly worked.

            After trying his little"buck and leap" twice more, he figured out that was not fun anymore and they marched right around a small 12" course. A good time was had by all.
            "He lives in a cocoon of solipsism" https://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/c...lies/smile.gif

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
              I am helping a 12 year old. She is scared to jump because the horse is so pleased with himself, and puts in a little buck. She raises her leg to get into the fetal position, That makes her loose, so she slides off.

              Today I simplified it and told her to wrap her legs around the horse's belly. Of course, she cannot actually do that, but the imagery of lengthening her leg and sitting deep in the saddle suddenly worked.

              After trying his little"buck and leap" twice more, he figured out that was not fun anymore and they marched right around a small 12" course. A good time was had by all.
              YAYYY
              It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.

              Comment


              • #8
                Yesterday I was half watching hunter princess having a Dressage lesson at the other end of the arena, she could not get her butt to stay in the saddle. Coach tried putting a paper under her butt, but she kept losing it in the first quarter of the circle.

                Coach asked to borrow my trainer for a minute. He jumped on, and wow the difference, kept the paper under his bum, but he just sits there! Sit up, and sit in the saddle ‘light bulb’ relax and do this, stop trying so hard, and remember you don’t jump any more.
                "He's not even a good pathological liar." Mara

                "You're just a very desperate troll, and not even a good one. You're like middle-school troll at best. Like a goblin, not even a troll." et_fig

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by Chall View Post
                  Good job!

                  Worth a few minutes of thought for me.

                  Q: why do you think the chalk mark worked?

                  There is a term for body awareness, something like ‘proprioception’?
                  I find it fascinating.

                  https://io9.gizmodo.com/sensing-your...eal-1473461740
                  She does have some special difficulties so I always have to get pretty creative with her. I think it was the instant visual on her horse as opposed to just watching video later. Just made her very aware almost instantly.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by Bluey View Post

                    Interesting.

                    That is what good teaching is, keep trying until you come up with something that fits that student.
                    You did that, thanks for letting us know, so we can also try it if necessary.

                    Can't ever have enough ideas like this one.

                    A little bit different, decades ago, we were teaching 4H horsemanship club kids about leads by having them on the ground, on their own legs, gallop in one lead, then the other and later making flying changes.
                    Then some modeling on their horses, the rest calling it right or left, wrong if so, developing an eye and a feel for what leads were.

                    Then we realized parents were still looking clueless, so we engaged them also.
                    Lots of fun ensued, when parents were trying so hard to understand what their kids had learned so fast.

                    In the end, everyone learned and later we watched kids teaching other kids and even adults.
                    A whole generation of western riders, already good riders, but with different skills and more seat of the pants riders, than the technical ones of training in the basics, learned about leads and so have all riders after them.
                    That getting the parents to understand can be the most difficult. Glad you had parents that were willing to look silly loping around.

                    I do something similar and when practicing a horsemanship pattern have them lope with the correct leads to cement the pattern in the head. Had one young lady using her mama as her horse to get the showmanship pattern for our state 4-H show this summer. That was worth it as they placed 4th in a very tough division. Plus it was entertaining because her mama would even kick her hip out like her mare would do.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
                      I am helping a 12 year old. She is scared to jump because the horse is so pleased with himself, and puts in a little buck. She raises her leg to get into the fetal position, That makes her loose, so she slides off.

                      Today I simplified it and told her to wrap her legs around the horse's belly. Of course, she cannot actually do that, but the imagery of lengthening her leg and sitting deep in the saddle suddenly worked.

                      After trying his little"buck and leap" twice more, he figured out that was not fun anymore and they marched right around a small 12" course. A good time was had by all.
                      Good imagery for the rider. Sometimes I use "cartoon land" descriptions. Heels down lightening bolts go to the ground. Toes down and the lightening bolts hit your toe then run back up your leg and make you bounce. Amazing hos something so silly usually works.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
                        I am helping a 12 year old. She is scared to jump because the horse is so pleased with himself, and puts in a little buck. She raises her leg to get into the fetal position, That makes her loose, so she slides off.

                        Today I simplified it and told her to wrap her legs around the horse's belly. Of course, she cannot actually do that, but the imagery of lengthening her leg and sitting deep in the saddle suddenly worked.

                        After trying his little"buck and leap" twice more, he figured out that was not fun anymore and they marched right around a small 12" course. A good time was had by all.
                        SO. I never learned to jump because, since I already knew how to ride, the instructor put me on the naughty App rather than Miss Clockwork. I asked why, was told the other girl needed the security of a well trained horse. So I NEVER learned the correct way to jump.
                        I tell this story because it seems to me a frightened little girl does not need to be learning to jump on a naughty little pony. Teach her on a schoolie until her position and confidence are solid. THEN she can tackle the naughty little pony who puts in "a little buck".
                        And yes I did read the last paragraph, but I still stand by what i think. ONE successful position day does not mean it is fixed.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I have come up with a lot of ways to impact a-ha moments with kids/learners.

                          I had one rider that firmly denied she was not tight fisted 'no I'm not!' carry two tiny raw eggs in her hands with the reins. Mean huh , I never said a word..... just the look on the face was enough.

                          Another I had carry two small cups with the reins thumbs up to learn to 'carry her hands.' And then I stood in front of her asked for the right handed cup which she reached her right hand forward to offer me and a-ha she could independently move a hand!

                          Some I've had sit in a chair with their legs in front of them, then I've held the headpiece of a bridle with the bit in my hand, they hold the reins on a connection and I tell them to stand up, of which with their legs in front of them they pull with their hands. Then I make them spread their legs aside of the chair and repeat to feel the hand independence with their lower leg under them for their proper body support.

                          The cue card kid just held up an empty cue card. For a minute there I thought I had lost my sense of humor. --- Red Skelton

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Originally posted by pony grandma View Post
                            I have come up with a lot of ways to impact a-ha moments with kids/learners.

                            I had one rider that firmly denied she was not tight fisted 'no I'm not!' carry two tiny raw eggs in her hands with the reins. Mean huh , I never said a word..... just the look on the face was enough.

                            Another I had carry two small cups with the reins thumbs up to learn to 'carry her hands.' And then I stood in front of her asked for the right handed cup which she reached her right hand forward to offer me and a-ha she could independently move a hand!

                            Some I've had sit in a chair with their legs in front of them, then I've held the headpiece of a bridle with the bit in my hand, they hold the reins on a connection and I tell them to stand up, of which with their legs in front of them they pull with their hands. Then I make them spread their legs aside of the chair and repeat to feel the hand independence with their lower leg under them for their proper body support.
                            I like the idea of the chair, really makes the student have to admit they are doing that. I have also had students pair up and one would hold the bit in their hands and the other would hold the reins and they would have to do a pattern. When one tells the other to stop pulling so hard it proves a point.

                            I also teach middle school so am always looking for new ways to convey information.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Great ideas PonyG.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                The video camera may be the great riding instructional aid EVER, but getting the student to actually change a behavior they note is wrong is not an instant matter.

                                Long ago we were taking lessons with a very good instructor who had a young lady student who was frankly rough with her hands, The young lady denied it was so. Even video evidence was not successful in changing the student's point of view. The instructor then put her in the round pen and detached the reins from the bit and re-attached them with thread. The instructor told her to trot the horse, she did, and within seconds had broken both threads. The horse, well trained with a very even temperament, thought, "last command given was to trot, so I'll keep trotting." And it did. For about 3 or 4 circuits of the round pen while the student was trying to figure out what to do next. She finally said, "I can't stop!!!" The instructor then moved in, stopped the horse, and explained what happened. The young lady admitted she was wrong, and the instructor re-attached the reins to the bit...with more thread.

                                For the next few minutes there was lots more thread consumed as the young lady tried to put her new-found realization into practice. Eventually she stopped breaking the thread. But she learned two lessons that day: first, you have to know, understand, and admit an error before you can correct it. Second, then you have to effectively make your body change it's habits. The first part can be an epiphany taking just an instant; the second part involves wetting the blanket in a correct fashion.

                                The art of teaching anything is for the teacher to figure out what will most effectively affect student behavior. Every student is different so a good teacher has lots of different "instructional templates" to cover different student reactions to problems.

                                G.
                                Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Seems like video is not as effective as it should be.
                                  Re: threads attached to reins, I had a guest trainer use stretchy material (like ace bandages) and tied them to the bit but she didn’t remove the reins, just let them looped on the neck. So you had two sets of reins.
                                  That is a safer way. In my case I had a sensitive TB, who got very excited when he didn’t have mouth contact. I got a few yards before I had to pick up the real reins.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    When someone goes to a reining trainer, first they do is put you on an older well trained Reiner, in a small round pen, reins draped and hung around the horn and you ride in there, arms folded in front of you, guiding the horse with your changes in body affecting the seat and legs and riding with the motion or behind it to slow the horse down.

                                    Many western riders do fine soon.
                                    English ones takes a while longer.
                                    They, even if just a tiny fraction of an ounce, have been depending on the reins and their hands if not directly for balance, for their proprioception, where their body is in space.
                                    That is also why in English riding on the longe line is always a good idea, to remind the body to balance independently of our hands and arms for balance.
                                    Once you take that away, it is a different way to balance on a horse.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by KBC View Post
                                      Yesterday I was half watching hunter princess having a Dressage lesson at the other end of the arena, she could not get her butt to stay in the saddle. Coach tried putting a paper under her butt, but she kept losing it in the first quarter of the circle.

                                      Coach asked to borrow my trainer for a minute. He jumped on, and wow the difference, kept the paper under his bum, but he just sits there! Sit up, and sit in the saddle ‘light bulb’ relax and do this, stop trying so hard, and remember you don’t jump any more.
                                      I ride hunters but was given a dressage horse years ago by my very generous boss because he (the horse) hated being micromanaged (and she just bought a fancy import). She wanted me to take some dressage lessons with her trainer so that I'd know his "buttons" before letting him be a hunter.

                                      That trainer was a saint—every time she said do blah blah at a particular letter, I'd have to stop and look around for it first. But what really got her was my leg. Every other minute she'd yell "hunter leg!" because I just couldn't get my legs down where dressage riders need them. Finally she ran a flat bungee cord under Will's belly and connected each end to me stirrups and said "that's where they're supposed to be." It felt so very wrong, but I learned that it needed to feel wrong to be correct.
                                      "Dogs give and give and give. Cats are the gift that keeps on grifting." —Bradley Trevor Greive

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        I try to start my students Western then move to English for just that reason of not using as much contact. I find it is easier for them to learn with a loose rein than to start with contact and then give it up later.

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