Training Tip: Ask Clinton: Unsticking the Feet in the Backup
Q: My horse backs up great on the ground, but he won’t take one step backwards when I’m riding him. He just throws his head up and feels like he wants to rear. I’ve tried different bits and hackamores, but nothing seems to get him to back up under saddle!
Training Tip: Confidently Introduce Your Horse to Obstacles
Once you have a foundation on your horse, meaning that he trusts and respects you and you can control his feet, you can begin to introduce him to obstacles. At some point or other during his trail riding career, your horse is going to come across obstacles on the trail – water crossings, bridges, hills, […]
Most riders don’t realize how important sweat is. Look at your horse as a well-trained athlete. In any sport, in order to develop any sort of skill at it, you’ve got to work hard and practice consistently.
Training Tip: Ask Clinton: Can’t Reach Head for Haltering
Q: I just bought a Thoroughbred gelding that is over 16 hands. Every time I go in the stall to put his halter on he lifts his head really high so that I can’t halter him. How do I get him to drop his head for me?
Training Tip: Expect Your Horse to Initially Behave Worst Outside the Arena
When you first practice trotting and especially loping your horse on a loose rein outside of the arena, expect him to be worse than he is inside the arena. It’s normal for his gait to be inconsistent. It’s normal for him not to go the exact speed you want. He’ll go too fast, and then […]
Training Tip: Horses Teach People. Then People Teach Horses
I firmly believe that horses teach people, and then people teach horses – in that exact order – meaning that when you first start riding, you should buy a horse that will actually teach you. The horse that you start with should be safe, controlled and respectful. He’ll build your confidence and teach you the […]
If you want your horse to get good at loping, actually get a stopwatch and time yourself or have someone else time how long you are loping. This will help because loping for a minute can seem like an hour, especially when you’re first learning. I proved this point at one of my 10-day Fundamentals […]
Once you’re in the saddle, spend a few minutes flexing the horse’s head from side to side. This not only reminds the horse to be soft, but it’s also a great way to remind him that when you get in the saddle, it’s not his cue to immediately walk forward. Too many people swing up […]
The type of horse that is best suited to a beginner is a confidence builder. These horses are generally cold-blooded, lazier horses and are very easygoing. They have the perfect personality to teach a rider who is new to horses. But at the same time, they’re a little stiffer and not as soft and supple […]