rwtag

Meet the Moderators

Meet the Moderators of these forums

Meet the Experts

Meet the Experts in these forums

Presently, there are no Experts to meet.

Your Horse Forum and Community

Got something to say?

Got something to say?

You are in... Forums > Welcome To Your Horse Forum > The Yard > Q&A: Flatwork.

Go to most recent reply

DuffyDuck

Joined:

Jul 11

Posts: 949

DuffyDuck says:

Q&A: Flatwork.

So, I thought I'd do a small Q&A page for any flatwork questions. I don't jump, and I don't hack, so I can't offer much advice there.
I will help as much as possible, but video's are always helpful!

Reply to this Topic 

 
CharParsley620

Joined:

Jul 10

Posts: 2400

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

Is there any simple way you can explain to me how to ask for a more working/extended trot? It sounds silly, but Parsley is a big pony but a pony nonetheless and is forward going - but I find I cannot get the balance between him doing a working trot and keeping him from cantering..Any suggestions?

I don't think he understands at all what I'm asking him to do, therefore he finds it easier just to go into canter..

 

It's lonely in the saddle since the horse died.

Reply to this Topic 

DuffyDuck

Joined:

Jul 11

Posts: 949

DuffyDuck says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

Firstly, if you are asking for 'more' and he gives it to you, he is 60% right, and that should never be stopped. Until he thinks he can get out of doing trot work by cantering.

Its easier for a horse to go fast, and even easier for a horse to canter than to trot. Hence why he probably likes to GO when you ask MORE.

Firstly, you need to make sure he is working from behind- a more working/medium (not extended just yet ;) ) trot needs an active, well working hind end. There are ways to achieve this.
1) Lots of transitions, and correct transitions. You want him listening to your leg so you have the ability to turn and a 5p coin if you have to.
2) Lunging with an aid such as a pessoa that will help to activate the hind end.
3) School figures such as 1 and 3 loop serpentines, 15m circles, figure eights, turns out of the corners- use your imagination. This will help the horse to listen to your legs, and also work from behind. Ensure he doesn't 'bow' out and to prevent this use more outside leg, and more contact on the outside rein. Also, make sure he is on the correct bend (inside) when doing serpentines and rein changes.

1 good excercise, once you are ready, is to have a 'normal' trot on the short side, then change the diagonal through half the school (to E/B), collect, and from E/B change through the other half, so you make the top of a triangle shape. This allows him to work the trot, but not run away as he has to listen to you to collect as you get to the wall again.

To begin with, ALWAYS rise. You need to help him balance, you don't want to unbalance him and you by sitting. Keep your hands very low, as this will also help with his balance.

When he canters, bring him back and IMMEDIATELY ask him again.

Reply to this Topic 

CharParsley620

Joined:

Jul 10

Posts: 2400

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

You are god. I swear.

It's lonely in the saddle since the horse died.

Reply to this Topic 

igglepop

Joined:

Jul 08

Posts: 213

igglepop says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

 Your are a god, my turn next o holy DuffyDuck, 

How can i improve my horses suppleness in his neck?

Can i be greedy? I will be greedy....

How do you teach leg yeilding and shoulder in? i can do it on one side only.

Reply to this Topic 

KirstenStratt

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 102

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

My mare is an ex racer - although she has been 'profesionaly schooled' With her previous owner, if i try to  use my legs to push her over she thinks im just asking her to go faster.

Is there anyway to make the movement nore clear that i am not pushing her on but im using my leg to control her?

 

Thanks

Do you say night and love you to your horse when leaving? I do?

Reply to this Topic 

alrees

Joined:

Nov 09

Posts: 630

alrees says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

Hmm let have a go lol.... I have a 4 year old who is generally going really well for his age but canter is a issue, when I ask him to canter he strides off using all his strength, he manages to do two or three strides of canter then he either goes back to trot or speeds up in to gallop, I encourage him with my leg and seat. He can do it no problem on the lunge, any idea on maintaing a good canter?
Thank you

~Beauty is in the eye of the beholder~ ~Never judge a horse by its past,always look at what it can do for you in the future~

Reply to this Topic 

DuffyDuck

Joined:

Jul 11

Posts: 949

DuffyDuck says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

Biggest apologies guys! I haven't had chanve to answer all these!! Will crack on with them now though ;)

Reply to this Topic 

DuffyDuck

Joined:

Jul 11

Posts: 949

DuffyDuck says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

How can i improve my horses suppleness in his neck?

Can i be greedy? I will be greedy....

How do you teach leg yeilding and shoulder in? i can do it on one side only.

 

-----

 

Suppleness through the neck must be achieved through riding the horse and his whole body. Technically, you aren't just wanting a supple neck to bend left and right, but a supple topline from his poll to the top of his tail (croup?!).

Once the horse is working correctly from behind, and is moving on the bit, introduce lots of school figures in to your work out. Fromt he word go. Make it a challenge to yourself not to do a round of 'whole school' throughout your training session.
These things take time to build up on, and I would start off with bigger figures, and introduce smaller figures over time, that way you don't exhaust your horse, pull any muscles or unbalance him making him unsure of himself.

20m circles

figures of eight

changing the rein through half the school

changing the rein through the length of the school

one loop serpentines

three loop serpentines

four loop serpentines

Work on those first before introducing

10 m sitting trot circles (providing you have a stable sitting trot as it will help balance the horse)

turns out of the corner
 

10m figure of eights

changes through the circle

one loop serpentine, at X 10m circle in opposite direction

3 loop serpentine with 10m circle in each loop.

Just think when you ride these you have to ride them CORRECTLY. Riding on the correct bend, using your inside leg to help encourage the bananna shape of him and to get him off your hands. In your serpentines you should change your bend over X, and when changing out of the corner on say.. the left rein, ride with the left bend two strides before you get to E/B change the bend to the inside.

And yes, you can be greedy, but I'm not 100% on these as I was only teaching Duffy myself and have only really ridden horses that know how.

First things first, you need to make your horse sensitive to your legs. After a good work out, and cooling down, take your feet out of your stirrups, and ask the horse to shift over with just your outside leg- so long as they move off that leg it doesn't matter how. Make sure your other leg is applying no pressure what so ever.

 

For shoulder in, I would only use this when your sitting trot and your suppleness is 100% ;) You need to be able to drive your horse forwards with seat, and be able to use your seat bones effectively. I don't mean jiggling around in the saddle though! Shoulder in, come out of the corner, riding deep in to it, and use the momentum out of that corner to ask your horse to bend around your inside leg, continuing with your half halts outside, sit to the inside but also have weight in your outisde stirrup/ seat bone to prevent the horse turning in. Bringing your inside hand ACROSS your inside leg (not in to your body) may also help the horse to get the 'idea' however should be used sparingly as you don't want the horse to fall on the inside shoulder. Also, you need to give impulsion with the inside leg to push the horse on and straight.

 

Leg yielding I am pretty rubbish with. My trainer had me coming off the wall at A/C to the circle point, weight inside leg, outside leg back and short, contact with the inside rein, light half halts outside so they don't turn in on themselves. We, however, didn't get very far, because Duffy liked to sit like a blinking dog. No joke. I will however, discuss with my trainer next week and see if she has any tips ;)

Reply to this Topic 

DuffyDuck

Joined:

Jul 11

Posts: 949

DuffyDuck says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

My mare is an ex racer - although she has been 'profesionaly schooled' With her previous owner, if i try to use my legs to push her over she thinks im just asking her to go faster.

Is there anyway to make the movement nore clear that i am not pushing her on but im using my leg to control her?

 

Thanks

Honestly, I think you would be better talking to someone, or people, who have dealt with ex-racers before as any advice I offer might not be the right one, and I'd hate for anything to go wrong.
How well does she lunge? One bit of advice I could offer is get her listening to your vocal aids so when you are under saddle you can slow her down.

I know one rather naughty youngster I was helping with, that had a constant go button, I was told to sit 'hard' in the saddle. That meant he had to stop and listen because it made it uncomfortable for him, but your racer might shoot off at that...

What is she like with half halts? I would be keen on giving her as many as possible, to let her know something is coming, and perhaps increase the pressure when you ask for a bend so she slows rather than shoots off...

 

Sorry I couldn't be more helpful!

Reply to this Topic 

DuffyDuck

Joined:

Jul 11

Posts: 949

DuffyDuck says:

Re: Q&A: Flatwork.

Hmm let have a go lol.... I have a 4 year old who is generally going really well for his age but canter is a issue, when I ask him to canter he strides off using all his strength, he manages to do two or three strides of canter then he either goes back to trot or speeds up in to gallop, I encourage him with my leg and seat. He can do it no problem on the lunge, any idea on maintaing a good canter?
Thank you

 

 

Have you had his back and saddle checked recently? He may be doing it out of discomfort.

Secondly, he's a baby. He needs to get confidence from you to know what he's doing.
When you lunge him, and he canters, do you ask him for more, or do you reward with vocal praise when he has a nice steady canter? What are his departs like from trot to canter ont he lunge? Make them steady there, and hopefully it'll catch on for under saddle.

If he becomes strong, you need to count 3 strides using inside rein, and 2 strides with outside rein. At no point let both reins go, but keep the bit moving and his mind occupied so he can't grab hold of it. Just use more pressure, and don't let him tank. If he does tank, use outside leg and rein to turn him in to a circle, and make it smaller till he drops out of the canter, then immediately ask for it again, whole school/20 m circle, and again when he tanks, whip him round. He has to learn that GO is not the answer unless you ask for it.

You might also want to try having someone lunge you on him whilst he canters, if he does well on the lunge, so he gets the idea. Its about planting seeds in youngster's minds.

Please get his back and saddle checked first though!

Reply to this Topic 

Page

Post a message in The Yard

To post a reply to this topic, please Log In.

Terms of use

Use of our community areas and forums is subject to important terms of use. By joining our community and using the features you agree to be bound by these terms. Read full terms of use