Horse Training, Mounted Work, provided by eXtension

Uploaded by eXHorses on 21.08.2009

I'm Cleve Weisgerber with the LSU Ag Center. Basically what we're going to talk about now is getting control of the horse's body while you're on it.
You need to get in control of the head, neck, shoulder, mid-section, and hind quarters.
I can't emphasize enough how important ground work is.
If you do your ground work, and go it correctly, this part is going to be a whole lot easier.
Now to begin with, we're going to try to get control of the horse's neck.
This is done simply by sliding your hand down the rein, and gradually, easily asking this horse to pull his head around.
When he does, you release the pressure.
You want to do this as light as possible but you have to use as much force as necessary
but every time this horse moves his head, and gives you his head without moving his feet now,
you release. Because horses learn from release of pressure.
You want to do this to both sides.
As soon as he gives you that face, you release it.
Simple and easy, but light pressure.
It's not the pressure that you put on him, but the release of pressure
as soon as he releases the pressure on the reins, you release your hand.
The next part that we want to talk about moving is this horse's hindquarters.
By doing so, we're going to move this horse around just a little bit, as we bend this horse,
we talked about the 3 buttons we have on this horse, the front, middle, and hindquarters.
What we're going to do is ask this horse to give us his face a little bit,
put our foot back, and move his hindquarters around, with his front feet basically staying still.
Again, we want to do this with both sides, simply ask the horse for his face,
put your foot back, move his hindquarters around, and one step is all you really want to begin with,
but as you progress you can ask for more.
The next part we're going to move is his shoulder.
We're going to do this by simply asking for his face, reaching up and pushing on his shoulder,
and moving his shoulder away. Start out with one step, and increase as it gets better.
After you've developed your horse to where you can disengage his hindquarters
and his shoulders, the next thing you're going to do is move your foot into the center position
and you're going to ask this horse to move away from your leg and do a sidepass.
This is simply crossing both front and back feet.
And you do this, again, with the lightest amount of pressure.
The least amount of pressure you can use and get the job done, the better.
Once you get control of the horse's body parts, you can walk your horse in a circle
and as you do this, take a hold of his face, put your inside leg on him, and he'll continue to go around your leg.
Again, you do this in both directions by just asking for his face, putting pressure on the inside,
and letting him walk around your leg.
Once you've done this at a walk, you can do it at a trot.
You want your horse to give to that pressure and stay in that circle around your leg.
Again, you need to work on your horse going both ways, where he will give his face, bend in the middle,
and walk around your leg.
Now, we're developing control of our horse, getting control of his shoulder, his belly, and hip
control of his face, and doing various exercises, and the other thing we're going to try to do is develop flow.
We'll use circles, straight lines, bend and flex the horse, and we're going to walk this horse around, take hold of their head,
and give them to give and relax, and then drop the rein and let them go straight a little bit,
and then pick up the head and bring it back around again,
and just continue to increase our horse's flexibility and quality until the horse will relax, and will walk, trot, and lope
in a straight line, or in circles, and develop the flow that we want to have.
The other thing we talked about, we're going to put our leg back in the number 3 position,
and push that hip all the way around. Now, if we do it at a stand still,
then we're going to start doing it at a walk, and then a trot, and then at a lope,
and we're going to start moving that hip, picking up our shoulder with the neck rein,
bump that shoulder and get that shoulder to move across.
All this is part of getting basic control of your horse's body. As we get control of his body,
and get better and better, then we can do a lot of exciting things.