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Re: [RC] [RC] What type of training? - Rae Callaway

I have a mare that used to be a "hell for leather" ride.  It was all I could do just to keep both of us safe.  Lots of walking rides, lots of group trail rides where I put her in every position in the group AND lots of distance is what worked with her.  By distance, I mean long distances.  How far depends on how far it takes for your horse to get good and tired.  Scarlet is not a 50 mile horse, so our distances weren't all that long, but I would alternate tiring her out on a long ride with a group ride that went slow.  It took time, but she learned that she had better start listening to me about the pacing because there was no telling how long I would be making her ride.
Guess, basically, I'm advocating both techniques. <g>
Tall C Arabians - SE Texas

Catfish Daniels <catfishdaniels@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Hi Dabney:
Sorry I sent that reply to you - I just realized that this wasn't regarding
your own horse. Oooops...
I since have read your post on letting the horse learn on its own as long as
it's safe to do so. Very interesting, because I actually have talked to
people who have done that as a last resort (since after endless time of
trying to slow their horses down and starting 15 minutes behind the back,
and still not accomplishing anything), have said the same thing you have.
Some of them said that it was the fastest lesson they could have given their
horse and had great results after that. I guess the trick would be to
control your horse until it's legged up enough to safely let him go in the
front at the endurance rides. And then, will your horse be mature enough to
"mentally" calm down at the vet stops enough to drop his heart rate and take
care of himself (eat & drink), or will the first loop have amped him up so
much that he's just a prancing, nervous fool at the vet stops. Hmmm - I
wouldn't necessarely talk about personal experience here, hehe!! (Malibu
2004 - absolute embarrassment). My gelding had come off the track and I
spent several months conditioning him REALLY well. In training rides, his
recoveries were better than my 10 year old gelding that I was preparing for
Tevis. At the Malibu Ride I did a Rider Option pull because I realized he
was just way too amped up and excited. Nearly two hours later, his heart
rate was still near 80. I had never heard of anything like that before.
After "prancing" him back to the vet as I was worried sick, the vet laughed
and said that the horse was fine but was just a "young, stupid,
unexperienced horse" and commended me for pulling him for his own safety.

So, conditioning and legging up was not the only thing this young horse
needed - and I didn't know that until after the first ride I went to
obviously as he behaved perfectly during training rides even with other
horses. Had he not been in great condition, letting him run with the front
runners could have done him immense harm since his mentality was not mature
enough for that pace and environment. Now, a year after working on his
"head", we entered a 60 miler and finished looking like he never ran a mile.


>From: "Dabney Finch"
>To: "Alan Kay" ,
>Subject: Re: [RC] What type of training?
>Date: Wed, 18 May 2005 17:56:51 -0700
>I know the prevailing wisdom is to slow your horse down, and do so for a
>good long time. The following advice is based only on my own experience,
>and probably also my love of going fast on fast horses. So, please don't
>listen to me! (LOL)
>As long as there are no soundness or safety issues, I'd say let him go as
>fast as he wants--but keep him out there until he asks to slow down on his
>own, however long that takes. Once your guy gets over the "kid in the
>candy store" attitude about going fast that he has now, he'll learn to cool
>his jets when it's asked for.
>I've used this method with my real hotheads and IMHO it works much better
>than the constant fighting of forcing them to walk all the time. Also, I
>do believe you can ruin their forwardness with that method.
>I've seen it happen to horses that have been drilled into walking, jog
>trotting and a "good stop." They lose their ability to freely and joyfully
>just boogey on down the trail with a rider.
> I'd much rather have to deal with the forward momentum--like a horse from
>the track, or your guy. At least then you've got some impulsion with which
>to school self carriage, fluidity, independent movement, and lightness. A
>really "good stop" will eventually come from that.
>Dabney Finch
>----- Original Message -----
>From: "Alan Kay"
>Sent: Monday, May 30, 2005 2:46 AM
>Subject: [RC] What type of training?
> > Hi all - I have a 7 yo 3/4 Arab gelding that I purchased a couple of
> > months ago. He is very sweet and has bonded with me quite well. His
> > ground manners are fair, but improving (still moves around a bit when
> > mounting, gets a bit fussy for the farrier, gets in the trailer much
> > better than he did). He is attentive to me most of the time. The
> > biggest problem we have is when we get out on the trail. He really
> > wants to go, go, go. I spend much of my time trying to teach him to
> > walk and trot on my command, not on his desire. But he really wants to
> > run - he hates walking! I am a novice-intermediate rider and don't have
> > years of horse training skills. So my question is - what type of
> > training would be best for me to do with this boy to make him more
> > responsive to me and happy to do what I ask of him, yet not take away
> > his love of moving? Thanks for any advice!
> >
> >
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Re: [RC] [RC] What type of training?, Catfish Daniels