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You are in... Forums > Welcome To Your Horse Forum > The Yard > Breaking something in...?

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CharParsley620

Joined:

Jul 10

Posts: 2406

Breaking something in...?

 Needless to say, I have never broken any horse or pony in but have ridden youngsters. It's a skill (or whatever you'd call it) I'd be very interested in getting involved with in the future..But in actuality, I know very little about the process/length of what/etc that really takes place.

So, anyone who has ever backed a neddy, how did it all go down for you? :)

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

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melxvengeance

Joined:

Aug 08

Posts: 2821

Re: Breaking something in...?

when I bought Loki as a 2 year old I was absolutely terrified and had no clue how to start it. I started with getting him used to tack, being led in a bridle etc. A friend came to stay and she decided one day she was going to sit on him with his tack on so she did it (she's a very brave rider) and he didn't bat an eyelid. so i hooked a leadrope onto him and took him a little walk down the road and hey ho, he was backed.

i started leading him down the road just inhand in his tack, we have quite a long driveway so it was perfect. i taught him how to stand still while i put a foot in the stirrup to mount him, at first he would dance around in circles and not let me, it took a few weeks to get him to stand still. i did this all by myself with no-one helping me or holding him! eventually he learned to stand still so i'd take him down the bottom of the road and mount him and then let him walk back up. once he was fine with this i taught him halt, turn left, turn right etc and he picked it up pretty quickly. the challenge was then to mount him at the yard and take him down the road so i did this slowly by walking him half the way down, mounting him, riding him all the way down and turning him round to come back up. and then everything fell into place. i started bomproofing him out on the road. he's pretty much 100% bombproof now to hack out alone, the challenge now is starting to school him and teach him to jump!

Norwegian Fjords - the golden horses with the golden hearts. Minty, Loki, Teiko, Willow, Cherry & Charlie - my lovely ponies :)

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CharParsley620

Joined:

Jul 10

Posts: 2406

Re: Breaking something in...?

 well done you! a lot of patience is quite clearly involved.

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

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Micki

Joined:

Mar 09

Posts: 3579

Micki says:

Re: Breaking something in...?

I have set off loads of horses. 95% of the breaking in process is the work that goes on before you get round to backing them. They should be lunging and long reining well, especially longreining, as that teaches them the basics before a rider even gets on. Longreining tesches them what the rein aids are, without these basics in place i will not sit on a horse as it isn't worth the risk as it hasn't been prepared properly. If all the work has been put in then the backing part is the easy part. I always start them off with hacking in company and then after about 6 weeks start introducing basic schooling as they should have learnt to go forwards with a rider by then and then start to ask them to do short hacks on their own.

 

. .A horse is a thing of such beauty. . .none will tire of looking at him as long as he displays himself in his splendor. ~Xenophon https://www.facebook.com/browbandsandbracelets

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leannemccabe

Joined:

Jul 10

Posts: 616

leannemccabe says:

Re: Breaking something in...?

 agree with above. sitting on them is the easiest bit its all the groundwork before hand and the training afterwards - if i think about it i've been 'breaking' pip for almost three years - it started when she was a year old with a headcollar then leading, the bombproofing, then showing ect ect to finally getting on board last year and were still going! its a fantastic experience made even better when you own the horse or can keep the ride on it as it sets you up perfectly theres adeffinate difference in pips behaviour when i ride her to when my sister rides her!!

You Can't Expect A Horse To Read Your Every thought, Without first Teaching Him The Alphabet . . .

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Rosebudd

Joined:

Apr 11

Posts: 562

Rosebudd says:

Re: Breaking something in...?

 tbh, in my mind, people back in two ways, one likes to get all the groundwork in place (the way id do it) and then there are some that will just chuck tack on for a day, and then hop on and hope for the best, then expect them to have a mouth, to no how to stop and how to turn left and right .. ( i know people like this!! ) 

 

our old pony we bought at 11months so we built a relationship before we started, we done all the groundwork first, lots and lots of long reining and lunging, leaning over her, all the prep work, then sat on her. .. she had a mouth and knew the basics of walk on, turning and halt.. everyone has a different approach though.. 

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melxvengeance

Joined:

Aug 08

Posts: 2821

Re: Breaking something in...?

i never longreined Loki before I got on, I tried it a few times (with someone holding him) and he just spent the whole time rearing up, walking backwards, bucking and trying to kick me, he HATED it. I tried a few times all with this outcome and it was downright dangerous so didn't do it again. I just got on and hoped for the best. He was relatively easy, I don't think long-reining is neccessary. I did lunge him though.

Norwegian Fjords - the golden horses with the golden hearts. Minty, Loki, Teiko, Willow, Cherry & Charlie - my lovely ponies :)

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**Haflinger21**

Joined:

Sep 08

Posts: 440

Re: Breaking something in...?

Definately the initial ground work is the biggie.  I had Nobility from 2 and lead him everywhere to bombproof him.  If road works were set up near by or anything interesting we would alwasy go and visit them for a nosey lol.  Also had him leading down main roads etc getting used to traffic.  He was not too impressed when I bitted him, to start with he just had a simple slip on in the stable for a few minutes at a time while he got used to it.  Then moved on to long reining to help with aids and steering and used a roller to get him used to having something round his tummy like a girth but never really lunged him.  I also found this helped him being braver and not as reliant on me leading at his head ready for riding.   I literally got up one morning and decided that was the day to get on him! Leant on him bare back then sat on and he stood there good as gold before turning round and liking my foot!  Hacking was fine, schooling however was a nightmare until he got the hang of things and started to get a bit fitter.

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dollymix

Joined:

Oct 07

Posts: 1604

dollymix says:

Re: Breaking something in...?

I bred Luna myself, so was determined that when it came to backing her, and bringing her on, I wanted to do it all myself. I had ridden for some 15 years at this point, and although by no means an expert, I’d had a range of experience from working riding schools, trekking centres and a SJ and Race yard. I had also kept my own horse (Luna’s mum) on a small dealer/stud and had helped with their horses in return for reduced livery – therefore, I felt reasonably prepared. I am a dab hand at lunging and long-reining etc!

Luna was shown as a yearling, 2 yr old and 3 yr old before she was backed and from an early age I was strict with boundaries. She is a typical welshie and will try to use her weight to get her way, but by being firm and fair, we both knew were we both stood!

When she was 2 ½ - 3 she was long reined and led out both in the school and on the roads. In fact, I must have hiked bloody miles behind that brown bottom! She was introduced to a saddle as well at around this age, although it was really just a matter of putting it on her back now and then. She was very unconcerned by all this and when mucking out, I used to stand on the shavings bales when I took them in and lean over her. I also used to use a step when washing her for shows etc and did the same, so she was well used to me being above her, and used to taking a small amount of weight on her back.

I remember the day I sat on her for the first time like it was yesterday! It was the spring and a miserable day really. She will have been rising 4. I had long reined her down the road and when I got back, the yard ‘loud mouth’ said, “I don’t know why don’t just send her away than do it all yourself, all young horses act like rodeo horses!”. Well, that was like a red rag to a bull, so I walked her up to the mounting block, leaned over her for a minute, put my foot in the stirrup and got on! Luna just stood like a dream!!! Haha – wiped the smirk off the ‘loud mouths’ face!!! I walked her up and down the track to the farm twice, and even trotted the second one and Luna was an angel!!!

Now, I know this was not the wisest move, but I did know Luna inside out and knew I’d be sitting on her in the next couple of weeks. After this, I sat on her maybe once or twice a week, never for more than 15 minutes at a time until after the summer. I also kept on with the long-reining for the first few months. When riding her, for the first week, I stuck to the farm, and in the school. However, after that I hacked her out as I didn’t like the idea of young joints doing too much school work! I think it is all the long-reining and early hacking which has made her so brave as she never bats an eye at the largest of vehicles and has never napped in her life! She is a joy to hack!

As she got older, I increased her school work, and introduced jumping. Again, no real issues other than that she likes to go as fast as possible!

I know that my experience has been very straight forward. I have helped with others that are much more problematic and so I think that the decision to back your own horse is entirely personal and depends on the horse, the rider and the bond you have!
 

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alrees

Joined:

Nov 09

Posts: 627

alrees says:

Re: Breaking something in...?

I have recently just finished breaking my lad and he is now finally riding well :D I bought him as a yearling I automatically thought that I would send him off to be broken but after having a thought I realised I could do it myself, when he was about 2.5 years I started him.
I got him use to a gentle snaffle bit and started taking him for walks in hand, in traffic etc. the putting on a roller and walking him in that. Then long reining him in the field then once he was happy out on the rodes. Then lunging whilst in roller then a saddle, then once he was going well on the lunge whilst wearing a saddle and bridle, at 3 years I had my younger sister lean over him and gradually put the weight on him, then I turned him away for about 5 months. Just to grow and mature, then I brought him back in to work, lunging first, then leading him with someone on him and then once he was happy, just some walking and halting with a rider and no leader then just building it up from there, now I still lunge him before I ride as he is full of energy lol!
It has taken my just over 2 years to break him from start to finish, I don't think that sending a horse off and it goes from un broken to broken and riding in 6 weeks is just not right. Breaking yours horse is also a way of bonding and getting to know each other, I know so much about my horse now it unreal.
When breaking horses, you have to consider that every horse is different and one way of breaking might go well for one horse but might not for the other. You need a lot of patience, sensibility and time!
Once you have done it, its an amazing feeling! I now have a horse which i can say everything he knows now I have taught him, its been really tough but you have to remember that really they are just babies and they get confused and fed up easily!! ** sorry for it being so long!!** :P

~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~

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Icebunny

Joined:

May 11

Posts: 133

Icebunny says:

Re: Breaking something in...?

Im just starting my three year old.  He already has good ground manners and understands walk on , stand and go back.  He yields to pressure etc. 

We have a very good bond and he really trusts me.  we have started lunging and he is getting the hang of it.  I have just got him a breaking saddle which he had on tonight  for the first time and he was amazing.  Im getting him used to the tack on seperate days to his lunging and walks up the lane.  When he is lunging well i will introduce the saddle and bridle which he will be used to (hopefuuly)  then move onto long reining then back him - eek. 

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