How do I stop my horse galloping home when I fall off?

Happy Hunter

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Any tips??
Usually my old Ponies went to the nearest green patch!!!

So my current ride is a lovely girl - not spooky - infact I have only fallen off her a couple of times - and I was the one to back her in Late 09

She just seems to Panic - And Leg it home - We were in an XC field today, Hacked there, did some lovely jumps, and seconds before I was going to pull up she slammed on the breaks and I came out the front door - DARN!

She legged it home (totally knowing how to get there) - With stirrups and reins flapping!

Jumped down a sizeable drop and over a 3 strand wire fence to get there!!!

Any tips?????
(other than try and hold the reins, - I do!)
:D
 

RuthnMeg

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Would also like answers to this, as my mare panics when no pilot is aboard having dismounted without permission! She, too runs off and is clearly upset when we are reunited. I try to hold onto her too, but she is in panic mode even then and I can't stop her.
 

SVMel

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Not entirely sure what you want anyone to come up with, since you have no control once parted. Maybe an automatic ground anchor that deploys when you come off? Or carry a net launcher, to fire at her retreating form..

The obvious one is of course not to fall off in the first place.... :D
 

Allie5

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There is a good article in the current Horse and Rider mag which goes through teaching a horse to stand when something falls from it's back. I just skimmed through it at my lunch break but it's essentially about training the horse to look at what fell off. They start with a numnah and place a treat on it = positive reinforcement. Looked interesting and I will def be settling down for a proper read when I finish work!
 

Happy Hunter

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Ooooo A net launcher sounds good!! Extra Laarge please!

I suppose she will be better with more experience - She just seems to look at me for a split second - then think - AAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

I was thinking of putting some kind of Velcro or cotton line between us that didnt need hands = But then I had awful images of being pulled along behind! :eek:
 

hunting mad

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My sons horse is exactly the same.......im not sure we will ever stop it,because infact its a natural thing for a horse to do
 

Cadfael&Coffee

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Sorry, I'm with the 'don't fall off' team on this :p

I wouldn't have thought there would be much you can do, but the training sounds like it *might* be promising, though if she panics and heads for the hills I'm nt so sure it'll work....

Yeah- I'm sticking with dont fall off in the first place :p get yourself a breastplate to hang onto if you don't already have one!!

What's the saying- prevention rather than cure?

She sounds sweet anyway, hopefully you won't part company too often :D
 

lhotse

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I have to say that I have only ever let go of a horse twice, having parted company. I seem to have a subconcious instinct to hang onto the reins, come what may!!! Probably not always the wisest decision, but it's just a reaction.
 

treacle_beastie

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You could try teaching your horse in the school that when you take your feet out of the stirrups to stop dead and stand still the only downside I have found with teaching this is that when you come to do some work without stirrups they stop dead!

Doubt this would work if your horse is fleeing from something but it should work if its just a case of you parting company!!
 

miss_bird

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Not much help as i was dragged up being taught you never let go of the horse when you fall off, have been dragged about a quarter of a mile across a stubble field once as my hands just tend to stay gripped to the reins and i cant seem to make them let go.
 

shorexhorse

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This is probably a ridiculous idea but could you school her or get her used to things falling off around her, then she might not be so bothered? obviously it would be a gradual process..

You could get hold of a dummy or a blow up doll to pretend is a person? and err, make it fall off some how?

I'm useless, sorry - i hope you find a solution!
 

traceyann

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Gosh im lucky three out of four of my horses stay with me no matter. iv fallen of five min from home and my cob stayed even though he could see home the only problem he wouldnt let anyone near me to treat me. But iv had these horses years except for one so i have very good bond with them.
 

Mickeymoo

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I have pet disc on my saddle with Micks name and my mobile number on it as he goes when I fall off too.

I have lost him before for 2 and a half hours (out hunting) and he was found walking down a lane. I have fell off and kept hold of him before, but was dragged along on my back for ages which was no fun at all.

I hack alone and jump stuff while out, as if I didn't I wouldn't go anywhere.

I learn't from this and 2 positives I always keep in mind. Someone will always find your horse, and mostly they walk in the gutter of the road as they would if you were on them.
 

Fairy Dust

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My mare does this too, it's the reason why I HATE hacking! I have given up to be honest, the only way I can normally prevent it is if I go out with another horse- she doesn't normally want to leave them
 

Hedgewitch13

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Without wishing to sound rude or snotty perhaps a few lessons on deepening your seat and becoming more stable in the saddle might help? Obviously there are times when staying on just isn't going to happen but if you are safer in the saddle then you won't have to worry about losing your horse :) Hope that hasn't offended you!
 

Paint it Lucky

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I'm another one with the automatic reaction to cling onto the reins if I ever fall off (thankfully very rarely nowadays!). Saying that last time I did fall off I managed to pull a tendon in my hand from not wanting to let go of the reins as horse galloped off! My own horses have always stuck with me though, my old cob once fell over, rolled ontop of me and knocked me unconcious but bless his heart he then stood guard over me on the floor and wouldn't let anyone near me to help! I don't know how long you've had your mare but if she is quite new it may be that once she has bonded with you more she'll be less inclined to ditch you and gallop off! As you say she gets scared by you parting company it might be worth practising getting off her sometimes whilst out hacking, making sure she is calm, giving her lots of pats etc then hopping back on, just so she knows it is ok. My lot are used to me forever leaping on and off whilst hacking (to open gates, pick up lost boots etc), so I don't think they'd see it as any big deal if I ever did fall off. Finally, try and lean back more and stick your legs forward on the approach to jumps, you know she might throw in a sudden stop so don't trust her, ride more defensively and it should be easier to stay on.
 

ChesnutsRoasting

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Don't let go of the reins! I've trained my brain to release the reins when in an enclosed area and to hold on tight when dumped in open spaces!:D When I'm in an arena and schooling i am naturally more relaxed as the horse can't go anywhere, when I'm out hacking it's like I'm on high alert and my reactions are different.
 

Doormouse

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You should only ever hold on when you are in front of the saddle. My mother held on to her horse once out hunting when she had been bucked off and she got round his back legs, he kicked out in panic and she ended up with 3 broken ribs and a punctured lung!

It sounds harsh but your safety is paramount, the horse will have to look after itself.
 

Cadfael&Coffee

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Without wishing to sound rude or snotty perhaps a few lessons on deepening your seat and becoming more stable in the saddle might help? Obviously there are times when staying on just isn't going to happen but if you are safer in the saddle then you won't have to worry about losing your horse :) Hope that hasn't offended you!
See!!! It's not just me thinking it :D

Neck strap!!! It's seems ludicrous to train a horse for when you fall off, the more I think about it the more I think that in a way you're then almost expecting to fall off????

Obviously you won't always stay on, but the more you do so the less you have to worry about where she goes when you fall off :D:D:D
 

riding_high

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my first thought when i read the title was not to fall off! lol

you can train the horse not to run off but it does take alot of practice in an arena or safe paddock/area.

lots of horses will panic and think they will get told off if the rider falls off, maybe they had a smacking in a previous home or something like that.

practice the falling off and maybe give the horse lots of treats and rewards once you have 'fallen off'. hopefully the horse will learn that if you part company it's better to stay with you.
 

ridersince2002

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I have fallen off lots so i speak from experience :p
But when falling off i dont let go of the reins- but if i feel a tug and the horse looks really scared i'll let go to avoid being trampled on- id rather they make their way home and i make mine than being dragged and trampled. But usually i fall, hold on and the horse normally calms down and waits if i can keep them still for a couple of seconds. BUT ive never fallen off anything bigger than 15.2hh ;)
I always say 'sorry' to the horse for falling off- its always my fault anyway, they dont choose to have a lump like me on their back! But iots always cuddles and treats before i do anything (i always carry a carrot on me when i ride :D- and i dont fall off often enough for them to associate me falling off with food!) I also very rarely hack out on my own anymore, horses get nervous and its just no fun for either of us, but in a school or jumping ring at a show or whatever the horses normally just stand there looking at me like 'stupid girl. your meant to stay on me when i refuse a jump :mad: '

But yeah, i agree, try not to fall off- it helps alot :)
 

Clannad48

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From past experience I would rather the horse bolted for home (providing there are no roads to cross) that bolt just anywhere. My friend had a horse that would go straight back to the yard - at least then other people on the yard knew she had fallen off and went looking for her (she always told them where she was going). If a horse just bolts anywhere there is always the possibility of it getting lost (the horse that ended up on the MOD land for example) or seriously injured on a main road.
 
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Get back on as soon as you catch him, go back to where you fell off, and then go much further. If he wasn't panicking and just wanted to go home without the extra weight, he will learn that going home without you doesn't win him anything, and just means more work. If he was genuinely panicking and ran home, I don't think you can teach him not to, because he wasn't being rational.
 

Cedars

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If they're truly bolting home, over roads etc, I would be practising falling off in the school. Lean over saddle, land on floor, feed loads of polos. Just get it to be ok that you are on the floor and them want to stay with you. Also never never never seem cross when you get back as they do pick up on that! xx
 
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