Not the best hack.

Ale

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I went out on Sunday with a lady who at 2 points during the ride lost some control. The first time we were just walking along and her horse started jogging. The ground was boggy so I stuck to walk and the next thing I know her pony is off! She cantered a short way at speed and then had to circle her repeatedly to get any sort of control back as pony wanted to just take off. She was still within sight so Brodie was okay, just a little confused I think.

This made me a little nervous but we headed for home and they settled again.

About half an hour later she suggested a trot and I agreed, I was behind, her horse didn't go into trot she shot into speedy canter and I could see my friend couldn't stop. I didn't know what to do as Brodie wanted to follow and was jumping around a little as I wouldn't let him and his friend went out of sight. Dissapointed to say I jumped off as its my thing to do when I'm worried. I'm annoyed with myself but he did settle instantly and we walked along to go and find my friend and her pony a way away. Her pony was really wound up trying to take off again so she asked if I could put Brodie in front (I got back on) but again pony shot past us.

It all just made me feel really uncomfortable and was interested to hear how you all deal with situations like this, what you do if the person you are hacking with is having some difficulties with their breaks?

Friend is working on the pony, this is the worst she has been apparently but think I'll avoid hacking with her for a little while.
 

Mary Poppins

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Why are you disappointed that you got off? That is exactly what I would have done. In situations like that you need to take a judgement on what is the safest thing to do, and if you feel more in control on the ground, getting off is the most sensible choice.
 
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carthorse

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I won't ride with people who have so little control that they put others at risk.

You say she's working on the pony, but that doesn't excuse this. It sounds like more work needs to be done in the school to ensure she has control, or as a stop gap tack should be reviewed so if it does bog off she can do something about it. Did she warn you there were potential problems before you went out? If I had a problem then I would, at least that way you can be prepared if something happens.

Personally I don't get off as I feel I have more control on board, but you do whatever feels best at the time.
 
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Flipo's Mum

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A few years ago, I’d have been very nervous and cut the ride short. Two nervous horses/riders doesn’t make a good combination. I wouldn’t have jumped off though but that’s not a judgement on you, it’s jsut I’m not quick enough and would probably have set my horse off and come a cropper. I’m safer in the saddle.
These days, flipo is pretty much the dope on a rope and even when excited he’s still controllable. As long as I felt the problem was workable, that the other rider wasn’t completely out of her depth, and we had a good route planned which would be safe and away from roads, id try and lend a hand. But not to build a dependency where she always wanted to hack with me.
Maybe some hill work (we have a pretty decent hill behind our yard which would help settle the sparkiest horse). Or a nice narrow lane which would allow some controlled faster work with me in front (flipo’s bum has been a proven bumper - went out with a wee cob a few times and she often had her head wedged over flipo’s derrker after spooking at something. He doesn’t bat an eyelid.
 
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diplomaticandtactful

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I never ride with someone who has no brakes. If horses pass Buddy and go ahead of him he prances and prats around and I just sit and let him get it out of his system, If he gets really silly I turn and go back a bit then return. I prefer to hack solo as then you are in control of what you can do.

Buddy can get very fired up, but I trust him not to be suicidally stupid. So while he will sweat up and be very buoyant I feel safe on him. I don't have the option of getting off as I can't get back on easily and I have more control on board unless I have him in a rope halter and long rein and then he listens as he is terrified of NH training.....

I think I would have turned around and gone back the way you came, rather than got off. I used to ride out years ago with someone who couldn't hold her horse and constantly overtook us at a canter - I also rode the horse and found him easy but she was nervous and it translated to the horse. but then she could ride a dressage test and I wouldn't even try...we all have different things we are comfortable with.

Can you hack out solo? Buddy in the field will automatically block other horses from going past him as he is boss hoss. When they all went out after the farrier, he led them up the narrow fenced bit up the hill, they were all itching to gallop past but he kept them behind them by turning at them and glaring ears back mouth open and turning sideways. so if you are going to keep riding with her, find narrow areas where your horse can do this and keep the other one behind.

I don't know where this horse is bombing off, but if it is on bridleways and public tracks you have a duty of care to other users such as dog walkers, kids and families etc. If you don't have reasonable control of your horse I question if you should be out hacking at all as if you are out of control and go round a blind bend and plough into someone, or even worse, spook other horses and cause them to bolt and have an accident, it is pretty irresponsible.
 
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Bodshi

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Nothing more to add, except to say that Brodie sounds such a good boy and I think you handled the situation very well. I too would avoid hacking with that particular combination for a while. Glad you got home safe and sound :)
 

Lissie

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I would avoid hacking with her for awhile, doesn't sound like she has much control if she can't trot up the road. Don't worry about getting off, you did what felt right for you and kept you and Brodie safe.

What do I do? They usually stay behind me and I put Lottie in front of them and move her over if needed, but I'm happy for Lottie to be used as emergency breaks, she's rock solid. Or sometimes they're better in front and let them get away from you, all depends if they're a horse that likes to be in front or not. It wouldn't really worry me I'd just leave them to it but if it makes you feel nervous and uncomfortable don't hack with her, it won't end well.
 
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chunky monkey

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It's a tricky one. I at the weekend was on the receiving end of horse getting strong, bouncing this way and that and ended up cantering off and leaving my accompanying rider behind. We had planned to have a canter across the area, but when we got to the open area there was dog walkers and they saw us and gathered up the dogs. My plan was to stop stand and wait then go wide around them anyway.
Because horse has got use to cantering that stretch, in company as soon as he gets there he gets on his toes. If we hang about he will start to rear which becomes dangerous for me. So do you get moving or risk rearing. On this occasion I let him go and he launched into canter.
Horse set his neck and dropped his head below his knees and did find gallop. I admit I couldn't hold him, but did manage to pull up at the other end of the short stretch. Fortunately my accompanying rider was on my old boy so she got a lovely canter across.
Interestingly when I'm on my own he will go across at what ever speed I ask. So he has learned to associate company and certain stretches with getting on his toes and wanting to race.
We have been working on this behaviour as it's something he has learned and the more he does it and gets away with the harder it is to break. Thats for sure. Its was quickly learned as we always use to canter the same places on hacks. When ever they got to that point they know what comes so they learn to get on there toes, each time ride learning that it's great fun and if rider doesnt let me go then I will try rearing etc to get myself into canter.
I did make the mistake of having a softer bit in as well. When on my own I hack in a rubber bit. But I have to change in company to a metal bit so I have some brakes.
Personally it's not about not hacking with that person. It's about working out how to retrain horse and rider. I can do places on my own and horse will be a saint cantering on a slack rein, same route next day in company it's a different ball game. It's not even about them racing. As my youngster will out stride my old boy.
My other rider has been working with me to stop this behaviour and we make him go to chilled state and just stand still till he drops his head and is on completely slack rein before being allowed to proceed on hack. Sometimes that takes several minutes. Rest assured the place were he bounced off this weekend will be worked on next time.
 
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Skib

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I am obliged to ride with an RS escort. Even with a good escort, a skilled rider, Ali, you cant be sure that the other person's horse will be in control. I have seen my (excellent) escort's horse set off at speed, and it is quite frightening. It made me realise what my escorts felt like when Maisie ran off with me. I have not got off, Ali - but then I didnt need to and dismounting is hard for me.
Where my horse has set off in pursuit, I have been able to divert, bend and slow down and stop.
But one does then needs to adjust the hack accordingly. If my escorts horse is bouncing about, I have been asked to lead and to stay in walk only. For the whole hack.
But if a good rider has had lack of control, they will sort it out and I do ride with them again.
I also have a routine of circling and backing up (Maxwell I think) for calming a horse, so we may both do that. Which is what you describe Ally.
One of the problems of teaching people to ride is that no RI can arrange to put a student at risk. But I would say that having a horse (either one's own or the other person's) run off or be over excited and learning how to deal with it is just part of normal hacking.
But if it doesnt feel OK for you Ali, dont ride with her again.
 
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Kite_Rider

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Firstly don’t beat yourself up about getting off, you do what you feel is safest for you and your horse.
One of the reasons I love solo hacking is that I can go at my own pace and I don’t have to consider anyone else, I’m very picky about who I will hack with and anyone out of control is a no go for me.
I’ve been a quivering wreck scared to even get on Belle at one stage and I know just how quickly I could end up back there so I will only ride out with others who I know are safe and sensible now.
 

Ale

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Why are you disappointed that you got off? That is exactly what I would have done. In situations like that you need to take a judgement on what is the safest thing to do, and if you feel more in control on the ground, getting off is the most sensible choice.
I feel like I'm too quick to jump off, it's not a problem as he was fine to get back on this time but sometimes can be a pain. I just freeze up and hop off at signs of him getting panicky.
 

Ale

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I won't ride with people who have so little control that they put others at risk.

You say she's working on the pony, but that doesn't excuse this. It sounds like more work needs to be done in the school to ensure she has control, or as a stop gap tack should be reviewed so if it does bog off she can do something about it. Did she warn you there were potential problems before you went out? If I had a problem then I would, at least that way you can be prepared if something happens.

Personally I don't get off as I feel I have more control on board, but you do whatever feels best at the time.
She did say her horse had been a little up for it but I wasn't expecting her to be this bad, I don't think she was either. There has been a bit change now and I know she's working on her in the school too.
 
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Ale

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A few years ago, I’d have been very nervous and cut the ride short. Two nervous horses/riders doesn’t make a good combination. I wouldn’t have jumped off though but that’s not a judgement on you, it’s jsut I’m not quick enough and would probably have set my horse off and come a cropper. I’m safer in the saddle.
These days, flipo is pretty much the dope on a rope and even when excited he’s still controllable. As long as I felt the problem was workable, that the other rider wasn’t completely out of her depth, and we had a good route planned which would be safe and away from roads, id try and lend a hand. But not to build a dependency where she always wanted to hack with me.
Maybe some hill work (we have a pretty decent hill behind our yard which would help settle the sparkiest horse). Or a nice narrow lane which would allow some controlled faster work with me in front (flipo’s bum has been a proven bumper - went out with a wee cob a few times and she often had her head wedged over flipo’s derrker after spooking at something. He doesn’t bat an eyelid.
Thank-you for the suggestions, we did try Brodie in front but this stressed me out more if anything as he wasn't very happy with her right up behind him. Also she then shot past despite it being narrow and Brodie tried to bite her, think he had had enough of her drama haha
 
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Ale

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I never ride with someone who has no brakes. If horses pass Buddy and go ahead of him he prances and prats around and I just sit and let him get it out of his system, If he gets really silly I turn and go back a bit then return. I prefer to hack solo as then you are in control of what you can do.

Buddy can get very fired up, but I trust him not to be suicidally stupid. So while he will sweat up and be very buoyant I feel safe on him. I don't have the option of getting off as I can't get back on easily and I have more control on board unless I have him in a rope halter and long rein and then he listens as he is terrified of NH training.....

I think I would have turned around and gone back the way you came, rather than got off. I used to ride out years ago with someone who couldn't hold her horse and constantly overtook us at a canter - I also rode the horse and found him easy but she was nervous and it translated to the horse. but then she could ride a dressage test and I wouldn't even try...we all have different things we are comfortable with.

Can you hack out solo? Buddy in the field will automatically block other horses from going past him as he is boss hoss. When they all went out after the farrier, he led them up the narrow fenced bit up the hill, they were all itching to gallop past but he kept them behind them by turning at them and glaring ears back mouth open and turning sideways. so if you are going to keep riding with her, find narrow areas where your horse can do this and keep the other one behind.

I don't know where this horse is bombing off, but if it is on bridleways and public tracks you have a duty of care to other users such as dog walkers, kids and families etc. If you don't have reasonable control of your horse I question if you should be out hacking at all as if you are out of control and go round a blind bend and plough into someone, or even worse, spook other horses and cause them to bolt and have an accident, it is pretty irresponsible.
What worries me about turning round and heading in the opposite direction is that in my head Brodie would take off and run back to his friend. He doesn't really have this in his nature so I'm not sure he would but it's happened to me on other horses in similar situations so guess it's at the back of my mind.

I'm hacking out on my own tomorrow, just a nice easy route and will hopefully relax and have fun.
 
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Ale

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It's a tricky one. I at the weekend was on the receiving end of horse getting strong, bouncing this way and that and ended up cantering off and leaving my accompanying rider behind. We had planned to have a canter across the area, but when we got to the open area there was dog walkers and they saw us and gathered up the dogs. My plan was to stop stand and wait then go wide around them anyway.
Because horse has got use to cantering that stretch, in company as soon as he gets there he gets on his toes. If we hang about he will start to rear which becomes dangerous for me. So do you get moving or risk rearing. On this occasion I let him go and he launched into canter.
Horse set his neck and dropped his head below his knees and did find gallop. I admit I couldn't hold him, but did manage to pull up at the other end of the short stretch. Fortunately my accompanying rider was on my old boy so she got a lovely canter across.
Interestingly when I'm on my own he will go across at what ever speed I ask. So he has learned to associate company and certain stretches with getting on his toes and wanting to race.
We have been working on this behaviour as it's something he has learned and the more he does it and gets away with the harder it is to break. Thats for sure. Its was quickly learned as we always use to canter the same places on hacks. When ever they got to that point they know what comes so they learn to get on there toes, each time ride learning that it's great fun and if rider doesnt let me go then I will try rearing etc to get myself into canter.
I did make the mistake of having a softer bit in as well. When on my own I hack in a rubber bit. But I have to change in company to a metal bit so I have some brakes.
Personally it's not about not hacking with that person. It's about working out how to retrain horse and rider. I can do places on my own and horse will be a saint cantering on a slack rein, same route next day in company it's a different ball game. It's not even about them racing. As my youngster will out stride my old boy.
My other rider has been working with me to stop this behaviour and we make him go to chilled state and just stand still till he drops his head and is on completely slack rein before being allowed to proceed on hack. Sometimes that takes several minutes. Rest assured the place were he bounced off this weekend will be worked on next time.
To her knowledge the horse has never been allowed to canter in these places before. It's a relatively new behaviour and she is working on it, I just have fragile nerves and can be a wimp so don't think I'm the right person to hack out with her at the moment.
 
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Ale

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I am obliged to ride with an RS escort. Even with a good escort, a skilled rider, Ali, you cant be sure that the other person's horse will be in control. I have seen my (excellent) escort's horse set off at speed, and it is quite frightening. It made me realise what my escorts felt like when Maisie ran off with me. I have not got off, Ali - but then I didnt need to and dismounting is hard for me.
Where my horse has set off in pursuit, I have been able to divert, bend and slow down and stop.
But one does then needs to adjust the hack accordingly. If my escorts horse is bouncing about, I have been asked to lead and to stay in walk only. For the whole hack.
But if a good rider has had lack of control, they will sort it out and I do ride with them again.
I also have a routine of circling and backing up (Maxwell I think) for calming a horse, so we may both do that. Which is what you describe Ally.
One of the problems of teaching people to ride is that no RI can arrange to put a student at risk. But I would say that having a horse (either one's own or the other person's) run off or be over excited and learning how to deal with it is just part of normal hacking.
But if it doesnt feel OK for you Ali, dont ride with her again.
Sadly it's difficult where we hack as you don't have the space to circle and slow the horse that way. They are narrow bendy tracks with lots of pedestrians and other horses. I'm trying to learn how to cope with it and hoping to gain lots of advice from this thread, which I already had.

Unfortunately I just suffer from nerves and so I try and avoid situations that are going to knock me back. I realize any horse can take off, I've experienced it many times myself. But racking my brains I can't really remember a situation where I've been out in two and the lead horse has taken off. Brodie remained on the spot as I had a contact but he was bunny hopping around and he has reared before which I was worried he may do. Certainly not a full rear but scary enough. In that spilt second I thought to myself ' I have no idea how to cope with this' wasn't a pleasant feeling.
 
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Ale

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Firstly don’t beat yourself up about getting off, you do what you feel is safest for you and your horse.
One of the reasons I love solo hacking is that I can go at my own pace and I don’t have to consider anyone else, I’m very picky about who I will hack with and anyone out of control is a no go for me.
I’ve been a quivering wreck scared to even get on Belle at one stage and I know just how quickly I could end up back there so I will only ride out with others who I know are safe and sensible now.
I just feel it's probably better if I stayed on, perhaps safer? He could of tanked away from me on the ground but actually he settled as soon as I was alongside him which was quite nice, felt like he trusted me enough to be alone with me.
 
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Ale

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Earlier on in the same ride we had met 3 horses under the railway bridge and several dog walkers on foot and a huge puddle to contend with. Just at the wrong moment a train went over. It was alot to contend with and although Brodie stood like a rock (he really does look after me) two of the horses we had met reared and jumped around alot and then one of the people screamed. I found it very intense and I think this just rattled me somewhat and made everything else a bit worse.
 
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Kite_Rider

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I just feel it's probably better if I stayed on, perhaps safer? He could of tanked away from me on the ground but actually he settled as soon as I was alongside him which was quite nice, felt like he trusted me enough to be alone with me.
He could have but he didn't, when I was suffering badly with my nerves my default was to get off, Belle was and is always happy and calm if I am leading her, which in turn made me feel happy and calm, enough for me to take a moment to chill and then jump back on, I know a lot of people who won't get off no matter what and that's fine if that's what works for them, I though would much rather get off if i was unsure than risk riding it out and a potential fall at speed, I don't bounce like I used to for one and surely if getting off makes you and the horse feel calm where's the harm in that?
Yes he could have tanked away from you, but he didn't because he trusts you, chances are he wouldn't have done anything silly if you had stayed on board, but it made you feel safe and calmed you down and that in my mind is whats most important.
 
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Kite_Rider

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In that spilt second I thought to myself ' I have no idea how to cope with this' wasn't a pleasant feeling.
It's not, it's a horrible feeling and you did what you felt was right at that moment. If it were me I would give going out with this lady a miss for a while until she can effectively control her horse a little better.
 
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