View Full Version : bending probelms
23rd Jul 2002, 07:22 PM
my one horse poppy was diagonsoed with navicular a yr. ago and i 've experinced with lots of things and now she is comfortable and is servicble with reservations and so i gettin her in condition slowly just for some fun classes at my local show group. when i ride her shes seems fine at the walk trot going around the ring doing serpentines, figure 8 that sort of thing. but she when she won't bend i put her in a circle not a tight one and she trys to canter or adviod all together. i think this is because cirlces hurt her feet at the trot so is their any other any bending trianing excerises that won't hurt her feet. i have another horse who i thought to bend but with circles and i don't know any other way. thanx for any suggestions :)
23rd Jul 2002, 07:25 PM
i made a mistake when it said i thought a horse i really ment taught a horse lol :)
23rd Jul 2002, 08:09 PM
Would it possibly have to do with that, hes not in shape, so his neck might be a little stiff?
you could try to carrot stretches,
with the horse i ride,
i hold a carrot in my hand, and bring it back nice and far, so she has to stretch to get it., then do it on the other side.
i dont even do it with a carrot anymore, she likes doing them, i think it feels good, i just tap her side, and she stretches back! its cute!
25th Jul 2002, 01:48 AM
These exercises I'm about to post come from both myself and trusted professionals. I've recieved great thanks from people I've recommended them to, and I have used them on my own horses and achieved great results. They'll help you keep her off the forehand/off your hands, and help her develop some of those muscles. The best part is these exercises are good for green and experienced horses alike.
I do now with all my horses, because it HELPS. You can stretch her neck from side to side using treats. Make sure she brings her head around to her side, REALLY stretching that neck, and not cheating by holding it within the regular comfort zone. You can do this undersaddle as well, and I reccommend using them during your workout. First, stop and stand. Drop one rein (say the right rein for now, in order to bend to the left - the non-bending rein needs to be completely slack to give her room) and bring your left hand behind your knee and pull gently back. It may take a while and she may circle a few times, but she'll get it. She should bring her nose to your toe. You can also press on her poll with the opposite hand during this exercise to encourage stretching. Do the other side the same way and repeat whenever necessary. I'll do this if my horse is locked up in his neck or especially heavy.
The main thing you need to realize is that the bend comes from behind, not just the head. Take your focus off the reins...you don't need them. To create the bend and have the proper contact, you need to PUSH her into the bend, not contort his head (believe me, before my current trainer I just did the "Seesaw" thing...for shame! ). Take your inside hand and apply solid contact on the inside rein. Push with your inside leg by the girth to bring his shoulder into the bend. When she gives, you soften the inside hand slightly, but maintain the leg contact.
As a result, she will bend to the inside. Hold your outside aids (leg and rein) and keep them supportive to prevent over-bending. No pulling or tugging...just constant support.
New Stuff -
For new exercises (that worked very well with my horse), hold the bend to the outside down the longside of the arena, and then coming into the corner yield her off your inside leg and hold the inside bend around the corners. This makes her pay more attention to you and makes her use herself.
Helpful Hint -
Whenever she gets draggy, bend him, don't pull back. If you think you have to "whoa", BEND instead. She'll bring himself up and slow down on his own without you two getting into a fight . It works!
It will take time and lots of work. These exercises and lots of transitions and flatwork will help!
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