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You are in... Forums > Riding and Training > General > problems breaking in my four year old

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Oct 10

Posts: 1

ssage1985 says:

problems breaking in my four year old

hi every one

i really need ur help

im having real problems breaking my four year old gelding, i cant understand whats going wrong.

i brought him as a 2 year old colt had him cut and did all the basics feet, teeth etc. when he came of age ive lounged him, long lined him free schooled him flat and jumping all went brilliantly.

when it came to bitting him have a few issues with head swinging and gets a bit impatient but nothing to cause concern can put saddle on him and longe him fully tacked up no problem. when i first got on him it went well leaned over firstly then gradually got on no probs second time he went mental and threw me off now he has had me off a couple off times. anytime there is weight of any kind bang hes off. tried bear back and had the saddle fitted even tried sand bags. Just not sure what else to do he is a cracking young chap and wants to learn but not sure if all this is because he nows he can get me off or if there is a  genuine reason  

any sugesstion gratfully received

sam xx

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Apr 10

Posts: 257

Gixk2 says:

Re: problems breaking in my four year old

I would get his back checked, teeth checked etc and rule out any pain issues before trying to progress him any further.

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May 08

Posts: 960

TruStar says:

Re: problems breaking in my four year old

Definitely have his back checked. When I started riding my 2nd horse he began to buck quite badly, in the end it turned out he had ataxia. I do hope very much it`s nothing that can`t be sorted, fingers crossed.

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Feb 09

Posts: 675

lrobson says:

Re: problems breaking in my four year old

sounds like he wont fully except your weight when we break horses we use a round pen and am lunged i hold on tight. while the person on the floor does all the other stuff until i can squease and slow down we also flap the saddle flaps about and bang on the saddle so its not much of a shock. do you lunge first with stirups down? see some people will disagee but i would suggest someone lunginghim while you hang on until you are in control and he has stopped bucking. atleast if the person on the ground is ontrolling him you can just try and stay on.

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Oct 08

Posts: 2370

*duskyteddy* says:

Re: problems breaking in my four year old

 He's only a baby- remember like children- as we grow up, we don't get everything first time- some kids do, some really need it broken down into chunks to help them. 

My 4 year old and I have experienced similar problems, we introduced clicker training into his work because we applied shaping ( not just through clicker training- shaping is very useful tool to have!) and broke down things into small chunks for him. 

Shaping is basically taking a behaviour you want to teach- i.e walk forward and breaking it down into lots of small steps- it makes it easy to retrace any steps you've had and it makes it more digestible for the horse to understand- especially at this tender age! 

So, for example, walking forward under saddle, I approach the situation like this;

1-In field/school/yard, in headcollar and leadrope, walk forward- if horse follows- Click and Reward.

2-Repeat the first step several times, keep rewarding the effort, increasing the number of steps taken each time.

3-When understood what you walking on means, begin to add in a cue- whether it be verbal - waaalk or a tickle from the school whip- this cues when the behaviour needs to occur- C/R

4-Ask horse to stand still- using the cue- ( verbal/cue stick), ask them to walk forward- C/R

5-Put tack on, perhaps have someone sit on back- ask for forwardness- C/R

6-Apply this when you are onnboard. C/R


Obviously this is a very simply, not very broken down one- but it's just an example of how shaping works- it builds up a final behaviour which you want to teach by breaking it down and by the end, they all link together. 

Our lives begin to end; the day we become silent about the things that matter.

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Oct 10

Posts: 6

SolsticeBaby says:

Re: problems breaking in my four year old

 Btw what bit have you got him in? I broke my 3yr old in a flexi rubber bit, apple flavoured, lol soft i know, but it worked and he accepted it alright now hes broken i just ride him in a french link loose ring? 

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Oct 10

Posts: 5

Sazz57 says:

Re: problems breaking in my four year old

Is it possible he has teeth coming through or wolf teeth that are causing a problem? if he has changed shape it could be he has had one nip off the saddle and not forgotton it? good luck


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