When did you learn how to canter?

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Skib

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Dec 21, 2003
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After I got into uni late 1950s I was given a ride as a reward. We hacked in a group, straight out onto Epsom downs - me on a lead rein and we cantered. It didnt feel frightening at all. In those days one learned canter in forward seat. It seemed very easy.
 
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RidingFree

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May 24, 2019
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I was on a hack in France and I'd done a length of the arena but not much and the RI would call out the instructions in French and the person in front translated what it was to me in English and he called it out and the person in front said "canter" and we cantered half away around a field, walked the diagonal route back to the start and did again another three times!! I was having the time of my life!!! We were on a flat price of grass and the RI said something in French and the person in front just turned around and said "gallop" and off we went!! I haven't tried gallop since but luckily I knew how and managed to stay on!! It was a miracle but yeah thats how I learnt!!
 

Lorenzo

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Sep 7, 2019
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Hi. I do lessons in half hours. So I'm on my 4 hour and I can canter. My horse doesn't know the meaning of stop or trot. She's very strong minded.
 

Skib

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Dec 21, 2003
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Lots of people fret that they havent learned to canter sooner. But I have met others who were put off riding by being allowed or made to canter too soon.

Please take care. Cantering on a horse that will not stop may not be safe for a beginner, especially in a school arena with corners. On the other hand if you are out hacking and cantering beside another horse, that may be a good way to learn.

By the way, many polo ponies are ridden and trained to canter and not trot. But they are trained to have brakes.
 

Huggy

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Nov 11, 2018
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I learned in my thirties, on a massive rs schoolmates - felt like I had wings! It was a good school - all the horses had brakes, but not plods. Never looked back
 

Mossy

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Jan 9, 2000
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Can’t remember how I learnt to canter but I was out with my adult son who does not respond well to formal lessons. We were trotting across Dartmoor. My girl was really trotting out, I turned round and young Moss was cantering. I didn’t say a word, just slowed down and asked son what he thought. I thought that trot was smooth was his response. He just got sitting to it. The only time he had a formal canter lesson he fell Off!
 
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RayRay

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Jan 8, 2017
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3 years i did start off ridin now and again though and lernt at differnt riding school then i started riding with
 

fielder

new irish rider
Aug 22, 2005
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9 months isn't a long time to wait. It is really just a matter of when you are comfortable enough in the saddle to try it out. It can be difficultto get started in a canter especially on riding school horses.
 
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Equine976

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May 22, 2020
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After riding for 1 year i started cantering. Most instructors wait until they know your ready to go to another gait. We are all different so be patient!
 

Skib

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Dec 21, 2003
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The leader told me to wait at the bottom until she had reached the top of the hill with her group of riders. Of course my pony got really excited and eventually I couldn't hold him and he tanked off to catch up with the others. I got a proper bollocking off that ride leader (can still vividly remember her shouting "I TOLD you to wait at the bottom!") and it never crossed my mind that it wasn't my fault - these days H&S would come down on you like a ton of bricks if you took care (or rather didn't) of kids like that.
Hopefully cantering is taught much more responsibly these days!
No. This once happened to me on a hack in Scotland. I could canter. But I hadnt yet learned how to stop cantering. My cob whized up the hill to the waiting TBs, sped past them and continued.
As for everyone cantering straight away. When I was a teenager I went on a couple of lead rein hacks and in those days one learned canter in forward seat and did it on one's first ride. On the lead rein.
 
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