My Horse Won’t Stay on the Rail

Horses are smarter than we give them credit for and any horse that’s been around an arena more than once, has figured out that it’s a much shorter distance around when they cut corners and leak in off the rail. No horse stays glued to the arena fence unless he is well-trained and obedient. All horses feel the pull of “gate gravity” or “barn gravity,” but only the horses that think they can get away with it will act on that feeling.

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Versatility and Cross Training

A horse that is versatile can do a variety of things. It does not have to be really good at every task. The horse may have one discipline that it excels in but it is also able to do other types of activities. For example, you may have a good trail horse and at the same time that horse is able to work with cows and perhaps do some jumping. A trail horse needs to be familiar with cows and you never know when you may need to jump over an obstacle on the trail.

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Working In-Hand — Yielding Left

We’ve been discussing tips (and in the next part of this series) for teaching your horse three in-hand maneuvers that are extremely important for the horse’s future from beginning work under saddle to advanced training. They are the forehand turn, turn on the haunches, and yielding.

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Dealing With a Horse That Pulls Back

Does your horse pull back when tied to a rail or the trailer? Horses that continually pull back are common. This problem is found throughout the horse industry, not just with dressage and jumping horses. With many riders, a horse’s ground manners are the last thing the rider thinks about.

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Working In-Hand — Yielding Right

We’ve been discussing tips for teaching your horse three in-hand maneuvers that are extremely important for the horse’s future from beginning work under saddle to advanced training. They are the forehand turn, turn on the haunches, and yielding.

A “non-horsy” husband of one of my students was perplexed with the notion of teaching horses to “go sideways” as in yielding.

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Correcting a Lead Change Problem

Some riders tell me they have a problem when a course they are riding requires a roll back and a lead change. Some horses pick up the lead change in front but not in back. This is a problem that can pop up in any discipline and the cause is one of three things. The first is simply that the rider is not clearly communicating the desired action and is the cue is confusing the horse.

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Aids Communication — Turning Aids

I want to explain the importance of the turning aids and give you some exercises to practice to more effectively use them. This information may be a revelation. It will help improve your transitions and may change your riding forever!

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The Magic and Mystique of Horsemanship Clinics

For some, attending a horsemanship clinic with a particular clinician, is a bucket-list item that they work toward for years. For others, attending horsemanship clinics with teachers who are leaders in the field is a way to further their careers and boost their horsemanship. And then there are the “clinic junkies,” who spend a good portion of every riding season trying to bag as many clinics as they can.

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Rushing the Jumps

Many times I have seen horses rushing the jumps. Riders try to regulate the speed through a series of half-halts but when this doesn’t work, many end up putting on a tie down or using a stronger bit. All that can be eliminated if you teach your horse to listen to the rein aids and seat aids and to understand what you are asking for with the half-halt cues.

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