Flying-lead changes?

BeachRiding

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Aug 26, 2004
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I was wondering how to get them! I can get my horse to canter either lead correctly, so I figure the next step is the flying lead changes. My question is how do I get them, and how do I train my horse to do them. I doubt he has ever done any,as he was just a working ranch horse!:rolleyes: :D
 

Rips

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May 23, 2004
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Well if you've a good balanced canter established you might try and tackle a large figure 8 in canter, apply the aids for a change of leg across the centre.

It probably won't work first off unless your horse has been taught it before or is extremely clever! Even if he doesn't change legs, maintain the canter.
Try canter the loop of the figure 8, slowing to a trot in across the centre and striking off on the opposite leg, repeat several times and if necessary over a few lessons so he gets the idea that he has to change onto the right leg to do the opposite loop of the figure 8. Then try it in canter again by just applying the aids across the centre.... hope that helps, if you understand that mess!
 

ponylover88

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canadian rider, would you call simple changes canter to walk, walk to canter etc? ive also been attempting to learn flying changes on Paddy, without much success! ive been doing the figure of 8 across the long diaganol, and coming back to trot for a couple of strides.

sorry to hijack the thread, willielove!!:eek:
 

Rips

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A simple change is what you'd be doing across the diagonol, the less strides of trot the better in this case. Try perfecting walk to canter off both reins if you want to really get it perfect.
Ponylover does paddy countercanter? If you strike off on the wrong leg some horses will readily change from counter canter to the right leg if you ask nicely!! If he can't already countercanter though, teaching it might just make it harder to get flying changes!
 

BeachRiding

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Oh that's fine ponylover88! I have been wondering the same things. I can only get my horse to canter from the trot. The walk might be a bit difficult! How do I train canter from the walk?
 

ponylover88

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Rips, i think Paddy does counter canter ... hes not very helpful. he can actually do flying changes well, he just chooses to ignore my shouts!!!:rolleyes: i had someone come up and try teach us, she put a pole down, and that helped. but as soon as she took it away he ignored me again!:p
 

Rips

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I can only tell you simply how it can be done, I only learnt with the help of an IN on the ground though :)
You need to get a really forward walk going and then in a corner ask for canter. An excercise that may help is to pick a corner of the school make it the "canter corner" for one lesson, ask for canter in it from a trot several times, then get a really good walk going and ask for canter when you get to the corner. Otherwise try and get canter from as little strides of trot as you can, try
'walk- 4 trot strides-canter'
'walk- 3 trot strides-canter' etc until you can skip out the trot.

May be worth getting walk-canter perfected before you try flying changes :)
 

laura jeanne

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Here's what I was taught (which is pretty much what Rips said).
When you are cantering, say on the right rein so the horse is bent to the right a little, turn in across the diagonal and slow to trot for several steps. By the middle, the horse should be straight. After you pass the middle of the arena, start to bend your horse the other way and give the canter aid for the other lead. This would be a simple change. Then start to trot for a shorter and shorter time and eventually you don't have to do the trotting part.

Well, keep in mind I could not do it but this is what was supposed to happen! I told the instructor I didn't feel ready to do this and so we worked on other stuff instead. Actually, my horse knew exactly what it was supposed to do being a seasoned school horse, but I was so bad at it that I actually got her confused!! Too many things going on at once especially with the instructor trying to micro-manage my every move and yelling out instructions :p
 

¿M€®¥ñ™

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Hey, everyone else put in good info but Ill ad something. Dont take sharp corners if your on the wrong canter lead cos this is how they make horses fall over in movies:p and the way I was tought to do a flying lead change is, how ever you do it; figure of eight/straight line etc, is to shorten your canter stride and ask for the opposite lead leg as you would ask for the one your already in from a walk/trot.
 

Styric

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My old coach had me practicing lots of walk to canter and halt to canter transitions in preparation for it. She said once you build up the hindquarter strength, you can get a much more balanced canter which makes it MUCH easier to try flying changes.

Halt to canter is alot of fun, and my boy can now do them easily off a voice cue.

How she usually taught them (I only know from watching) was to have you canter across the diagonal, trot for four strides over a slightly raised pole and pick up the other lead. Once you got that precise and down pat, she'd have you do 3 strides, then 2, and then simply ask you to apply the cue for the canter on the other lead right over the pole. The slight hop most horses do over the pole really seemed to help.