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by Developer Services

Training Tip of the Week: Rearing horse tip: Handle the situation safely in the saddle.

 

If your horse is rearing because he’s hot and nervous, make sure you’re not adding to the situation by pulling back on both reins to try to stop him from moving. Remember, the more you pull back on the reins and say, “Don’t go!” the more upset and nervous the horse will get. When a horse panics and uses the reactive side of his brain, only use one rein to control him, and concentrate on getting him to use the thinking side of his brain by doing lots of changes of direction.

The best way to gain immediate control of the situation is to yield his hindquarters. When a horse crosses his back legs over one another, it takes away his balance. Without balance, the horse can’t stand on his hind legs and rear. Think of yielding the horse’s hindquarters like pushing the clutch in on a car, you’re taking the power away from the horse. Yielding the hindquarters also gets the horse to stop thinking about being disrespectful or fearful and makes him concentrate on where he’s placing his feet.