leading on a ride

Discussion in 'Training of the Horse' started by MPR, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. MPR

    MPR New Member

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    If I'm riding with other people and my pony takes the lead down the road, he walks slower and looks around more. This is probably typical. If I want him to trot down the road, being the leader of others, he will trot, but does a lot of sudden stops, because he sees something. I'm not sure what the correct thing to do is? Should I let him stand there checking out what ever he thinks he sees (and holding up the ride), or should I immediately get him going again?? If I try to get him trotting again right away, it doesn't seem to work. What I mean is, he won't get going until I've basically insisted. He's just hesitant. Is this something that I just accept? Or is this something we should be working on? It's just if he is leading, it's a jerky ride... go, stop, go, stop etc.
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  2. whitby which

    whitby which New Member

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    It sounds like he doesn't yet have the confidence to lead.

    What is he like if he is by himself?

    Is it that he needs another to show him things aren't scary, or does he not feel he is dominant enough to be the leader?

    In herds, the 'leader' often doesn't go first, but directs operations from just behind. Maybe your horse needs to have confidence in you to give him directions with assurance, so you are clearly his leader.

    What happens if you walk out in hand together? Does he follow behind, or walk beside you? What about long reining?


    Sorry, a zillion questions:(. These I what I would ask myself, and try out, in searching for the answer!
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012
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  3. MPR

    MPR New Member

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    Thanks so much for the reply. Those are very good questions.

    When I rode with a group a week ago, none of the horses wanted to lead. They were spooking and balking. So, I had my pony lead, because at least he would do it, even though he did abrupt stops.

    I do ride him out alone. He's more tense when he hasn't been out for a while... like starting him again in the Spring. But once he's in the groove for the season and on roads that he knows, he's fine. Oh,... I guess that's probably it. It's Spring and I'm just getting him going again, and he's at a new place, so not fully comfortable with the area. :tongue:

    A few weeks ago, I rode him out with a 20 yr old non spooky seasoned horse. He just followed him and was very content. I did have him lead part of the time. He was OK, but more hesitant.

    So, it sounds like a confidence thing. Thanks so much for helping me examine all this. My expectations are too high for him right now. He needs to get to know the area. I'll try to have him go with a horse that is real steady. He's good about going out alone, but I just need to take things a little bit slower. He moved to this new boarding place last November and hasn't been out much because of snow and ice. Now that it's Spring, I'm all excited about riding out, but my expectations are too high. :redface:

    Thanks again. :smile:
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  4. notpoodle

    notpoodle Well-Known Member

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    aww bless him :)

    i'd walk him out inhand solo loads, and if he longreins reasonably well, some solo longreining out and about if possible :) did loads of that with my young pony, and it worked a treat. she got used to walking out in front of eg. me and 'leading'. she's now turned into a confident young pony, happy to go out solo, lead, go front or back and leave other horses behind quite happily :)
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  5. MPR

    MPR New Member

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    This is a great idea! Thanks. I'll try some ground driving. That's what I call it. :smile:
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  6. MPR

    MPR New Member

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    I don't have a surcingle so I didn't do ground driving today.

    I had him work on the lounge line at wtc, whoa, reverse etc.

    After that I walked him on foot down the driveway and on a trail coming back, having him stay by my side rather than follow behind. This went great. No problems, and he wasn't nervous.

    I then rode him a bit in the arena and that was fine.

    For the cool down, I rode him at a walk down the driveway. He was hesitant and kept stopping, but fine being led from the ground. When riding, I had him go forward, stop, turn around go back toward home, turn around again etc. We were just going down the driveway. I don't think he was really scared. I'm wondering if he's just testing me instead. Not sure how to read him.
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