Do people not establish the basics anymore?

YorksG

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A few threads recently have got me thinking, it used to be that young horses were established in walk and trot before people had them jumping and doing advanced work in canter. Likewise riders had a secure seat in canter before they learnt to jump. It appears that this is no longer fashionable, what do others think?
 

SpringArising

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I think that there's a hell of a lot of horse riders/owners who don't truly understand horse behaviour or know how to deal with horses without getting angry at them, or putting on every gadget under the sun, or just giving up because 'they're too naughty' or because their instructor said 'he's just being a pain in the backside' - but then I guess that's always been the case and probably won't ever change.

I realise this post probably makes me sound like I'm a huge snob (I'm really not!), but I do despair at the amount of people who have horses but have absolutely no idea how to handle them properly when they're being anything but angels.
 

FlyingCircus

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Seems not so much! My gelding was jumping 1.10 before I got him and can barely go in a straight line...(not through my own doing, I might add!)
 

YorksG

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Seems not so much! My gelding was jumping 1.10 before I got him and can barely go in a straight line...(not through my own doing, I might add!)
That is just so sad and needless :( SA I think you are right, but I think the proportion of owners who don't know enough to bring on youngsters, but who try, is increasing.
 

eggs

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I learned to ride back in the late 60s and we definitely had the basics instilled in us.

H&S was far less of an issue so balance was taught and we regularly went down the jumping lanes with no saddle and our arms out to either side.

I think nowadays that things are so expensive there tends to be a want to 'progress, quickly without having a proper understanding.

It also seems that there are a fair number of people who have a few lessons and then buy a horse without knowledge of how to look after it and without the backup of a knowledgeable support.
 

millikins

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Legs! So many riders at Pony Club level through local shows to watching advanced stuff on the TV seem to have no lower leg position or use. And so few instructors seem to drum in the importance either.
 

Queenbee

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A few threads recently have got me thinking, it used to be that young horses were established in walk and trot before people had them jumping and doing advanced work in canter. Likewise riders had a secure seat in canter before they learnt to jump. It appears that this is no longer fashionable, what do others think?
No York... In response to your observation I don't, I establish the basics if it suite the horse, if another method suits the horse I follow that, I'm simply not one of those people who tries to train every individual Horse the same way... Horses are individual just as humans are... That is not me anthropomorphising it is just a simple fact. The good old method doesn't suit every horse
 

YorksG

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No York... In response to your observation I don't, I establish the basics if it suite the horse, if another method suits the horse I follow that, I'm simply not one of those people who tries to train every individual Horse the same way... Horses are individual just as humans are... That is not me anthropomorphising it is just a simple fact. The good old method doesn't suit every horse
I'm afraid I can't agree with you, also not anthropomorphising, but IMO trying to teach advanced stuff to horses before their walk and trot is established, is like trying to teach a child to read by using books by James Joyce, the child may be able to decode print, but will have no idea of the meaning.
 

GoldenHours

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And it's not just those who are relatively new to horses. What never ceases to amaze me are the number of riders I know and have witnessed (including vets, trainers, yard managers, aspiring eventers) who pull their horses out of the stable, into the school and barely five minutes later they're trotting and in no time at all, cantering. Being in the process of rehabbing my horse from a tendon injury, I have to do a full 20 mins in walk before any trot work. Even for a horse without previous injury, my vet says 15mins walk is the golden rule to ensure optimum elasticity of tendons and joint lubrication. Are these people really so ignorant, or are they just lazy and selfish? Our 'throw away' society at it's worst perhaps - and a poor example to set to others.
 

Leo Walker

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The thing that drives me MENTAL is the amount of people who kick, kick, kick and still have a horse behind the leg thats shuffling forwards. They kick harder but never stop to wonder if kick, kick, kick is the way to go :(
 

SpringArising

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SA I think you are right, but I think the proportion of owners who don't know enough to bring on youngsters, but who try, is increasing.
Yep, I think you're right there.

There seems to be a lot of people who buy youngsters but have no idea what to do with them, so they send them away for training/backing. I've never really understood why you'd buy a youngster if you don't want to/can't back it yourself. But that might be going off tangent a bit!
 

equi

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I took my cousin riding and they had them trotting and doing poles in a jumping position in first lesson. I thought it was a little advanced.
 

FestiveFuzz

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I've seen it too. To someone who has spent the best part of a year working on H's walk/trot before progressing to canter and jumping it baffles me how anyone can think trying to "run before they can walk" is the best approach.
 

Goldenstar

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There's a a lot of bad training out there of horses and riders .
Blaming gadgets in way misses the point you can use a gadget if you understand what it will help you achieve.
The stages of training where drummed into us as where the basics of position of the rider and the aids .
 

YorksG

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There's a a lot of bad training out there of horses and riders .
Blaming gadgets in way misses the point you can use a gadget if you understand what it will help you achieve.
The stages of training where drummed into us as where the basics of position of the rider and the aids .
Indeed they were, and for such good reasons :) I can still hear my first RI's voice whenever I ride and use many of their exercises to ensure that I don't wander into bad habits eg wobbly lower legs:)
 

Ladyinred

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I think that there's a hell of a lot of horse riders/owners who don't truly understand horse behaviour or know how to deal with horses without getting angry at them, or putting on every gadget under the sun, or just giving up because 'they're too naughty' or because their instructor said 'he's just being a pain in the backside' - but then I guess that's always been the case and probably won't ever change.

I realise this post probably makes me sound like I'm a huge snob (I'm really not!), but I do despair at the amount of people who have horses but have absolutely no idea how to handle them properly when they're being anything but angels.

Completely agree. And 90% of the time the 'getting angry' is a mask for their own fear in knowing they have bitten off more than they can chew.
 

JFTDWS

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There seems to be a lot of people who buy youngsters but have no idea what to do with them, so they send them away for training/backing. I've never really understood why you'd buy a youngster if you don't want to/can't back it yourself.
I find this pretty baffling too. I buy youngsters because I love basic training - from long reining through backing and riding away to starting proper schooling and jumping.

I also find it odd how many people are happy to jump / hack / ride horses which are, as far as I can tell, pig ignorant to all but the most unsubtle aids, and incapable of responding appropriately or maintaining balanced, straight and rhythmical paces.
 

Mooseontheloose

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There is also a huge difference between what can be achieved by an experienced professional rider with excellent balance and independent seat and by a less able rider, so that a horse can look much more educated than it actually is.
I have a big problem with jumping being taught to children on the lead rein, partly because if you can't canter you can't jump and when on lead rein the pony is prone to throw in quite a big slow jump which causes child to be unseated, hands to fly up and pony to get punished in mouth - anything other than a pole on the ground on the lead rein is a nono to me.
I also have a big problem when I hear 'kick kick kick' being shouted at children at Pony Club rallies. No wonder these ponies are dead to the leg. I appreciate that I am a bit obsessive and don't mind how long things take to achieve the right result rather than take short cuts but my pupils do ride with feel and confidence and the horses go well, some of them rathe ordinary but give their best.
I consider myself lucky to have learnt to ride quite a long time ago when you were not allowed to progress to the next stage until you were established, and interestingly the people I trained with are mainly still riding and coaching and producing good horses, so I think it was a good grounding.
Establishment of progress in the horse is vital. You cannot build on dodgy foundations. End of.
 

Cortez

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Yep, I think you're right there.

There seems to be a lot of people who buy youngsters but have no idea what to do with them, so they send them away for training/backing. I've never really understood why you'd buy a youngster if you don't want to/can't back it yourself. But that might be going off tangent a bit!
I wouldn't disapprove of someone sending their horse away for training - that's what professionals are for; it's the people who think they are capable of teaching a green horse when they are completely ignorant themselves that cause most of the difficulties.
 

LittleRooketRider

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With the 'pony club kick', I think yes its not ideal, but often young children just don't have the physical strength to rdie with their seat and more subtle leg aids..before I get shot down in flames i'm sure it is possible but still...besides I'd rather they were influenced to believe that horses should be going forwards rather than grappling them into a forced outline and not going forward.

I think yes on a whole the basics should be established first eg. walk and trot, but a horse that is inclined to not move forwards in walk and trot can/may benefit from a little canter to et them going forwards.
 

Ceriann

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I bought a rising five year old (v quiet type) who had already done a lot of the basic basics but I knew once I got her I would need regular (weekly) lessons just to help with finessing and schooling. My instructor just pushed and pushed us - far harder and quicker than I wanted to go - she was very focused on getting us to canter and I knew my mare just wasn't ready for it in the school. I was happy working on a good walk and trot. We parted ways when my instructor used the lunge whip to get my mare to canter (whilst I was on her) despite me saying no! So it's not just owners, professionals can be too results focused too.
 

Clare85

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I've been looking for an unbroken youngster recently. I've found a lovely one who is coming home in a few weeks, yay :) However, before I found him I was enquiring about another. During our chats the breeder asked whether I would be planning to show him this season. I said I would certainly be planning to take him out a couple of times in hand but probably not under saddle as I feel backing, riding away and competing under saddle all in a few months may be too much to ask and as this is a long term project for me, I don't want to rush things and blow his brain. I advised I would be going in straight lines in walk and trot, introducing a bit of canter work at the end of the summer, before turning away over winter. The breeder declined to sell me the horse as they want him out affiliated showing this season under saddle! Amazing!
 

moleskinsmum

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I am possibly one of those who is guilty of taking it too slowly. I have had new horse for two and a half years (albeit he did have six months off in the early stages with an injury) and ridden trot is still a work in progress.
He is a worrier and tends to rush if unsettled and I am keen to establish a balanced, consistent trot before we move up a gear. He can work nicely but it is not consistent yet. We canter out hacking but not yet in the school.
However, we have achieved huge progress on the lunge and I know he is capable - but he is a horse who needs time to process things.
I am lucky as he's my "toy" and I can do stuff at whatever rate I see fit. My aim is to turn him into the best general all rounder he can possibly be.
I am in the old- style camp but it has never let me down yet. It can always be adapted to different horses and I hate seeing horses rushed into things - in the worst cases they go sour and never become the horse they could have been
 

equi

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I have to say I hve enjoyed immensly braking my lot to drive. Yes they may only be miniatures so have a bit of a calmer approach/can seem less threatening, but they still need the exact same training. I would not now say "oh I'm ready for a 3yo OTTB" very far from it lol
 

Auslander

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No York... In response to your observation I don't, I establish the basics if it suite the horse, if another method suits the horse I follow that, I'm simply not one of those people who tries to train every individual Horse the same way... Horses are individual just as humans are... That is not me anthropomorphising it is just a simple fact. The good old method doesn't suit every horse
This baffles me. Could you elaborate? I've been starting horses for 25 years, and I cannot think of one horse who would have been better off having the more advanced work started without the basics solidly established first. There are horses who find the more advanced movements easier than others, but that doesn't mean that they shouldn't have the basics put in place first. As their training progresses, any holes in their knowledge become more and more obvious.
 

oldie48

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I totally agree with this. I've always worked with an experienced professional even with established horses. It's allowed me to take on horses that I would have struggled with without their support and I've been able to improve my riding without spoiling the horse. A big part of the problem is, i think, that many riders have never ridden a well schooled horse so they don't know how much better their horse or pony could be with some basic schooling and they have no idea how to school a horse even in the basics. Such a pity as they really don't know what they are missing and in the long term, they are compromising their horses's soundness.
I wouldn't disapprove of someone sending their horse away for training - that's what professionals are for; it's the people who think they are capable of teaching a green horse when they are completely ignorant themselves that cause most of the difficulties.
 

D66

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I wouldn't disapprove of someone sending their horse away for training - that's what professionals are for; it's the people who think they are capable of teaching a green horse when they are completely ignorant themselves that cause most of the difficulties.
this ^^^^. Having worked with a pro to break and school my youngster I appreciate his experience and skill has made the process easier for both of us. Knowing when to call in extra help is a skill in itself - there's no shame in that,.... and the extra pair of (informed) eyes is a god send.
 
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