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The Dominance Approach to Training Horses Part 4 of 4

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1 month to go! And Playday #2

August 25, 2016

 

We are still working on a lot of the same things, such as lengthening (strength stuff) and lateral work.  

 

I've been asking him to lengthen before the poles as he is more likely to offer it in anticipation of going over.  This resulted in a hilarious slamming on the brakes over the first pole, which really threw me off balance.  I didn't fall but almost ended up on his neck.  I laughed and treated him because it was amusing but I did have to capture the lengthen!

     -I also reduced the poles to 2 and he seems to offer a nicer lengthen there. 

     - I wonder if I should attach a cue to the poles and then ask for it without the poles or reduce it down to 1 pole and then no poles?

 

Lateral Work:

I suggested we might try doing more shoulder in on the circle to help him with his balance.  Hanna said to focus on more bending on the circle, small to big circles and so on.

 

 

-He may swing out his quarters to avoid it the harder work, so ask more at the shoulder than the quarters

 -Do both on the ground and ridden (bend on circles and serpentine and figure 8)

 

Circle Shoulder In   

However if I'm going to do a shoulder in on the circle, then it is definitely more "hindquarters out" and legs crossing, more so than what you would get bending on the circle.  However you don't want to abuse this and have it turn into a way of him avoiding bending on the circle by throwing his hindquarters out.

 

Because he is worse on the right rein, do more on that side.  (He definitely overbends to the left and bends outward to the right)

 

Vertical Flexion

Keep trying for vertical flexion in movement.  Just be persistent when in the saddle; stop then ask, go then ask and if he forgets, stop then ask again until he clues in.  Just do it as many times as necessary.

 

Other things to play with:

Might be time to attempt some A to B's.  Watch the videos!

If I struggle with getting him to "go" instead ask for a "come", as some horses don't like to go away. I can definitely see Aslan struggling with that.  He's a lapdog. 

 

I also told her about our issue with the playday where he had a huge temper tantrum outside when I asked him to do hillwork and jumping in a small grassy area.  I was pretty shocked and upset and he got in a lot of trouble.  But I realized later that I was asking him to do a lot of work, fresh from the stall, on green grass.  We hadn't worked on grass in particular, since it is a highly desirable treat for Aslan and I didn't have time this summer for that particular "battle".  I knew grass could cause him frustration and we had to at least work on walking to and from his pen with politeness and not snatching for grass.  Hanna let me know that this was a common problem and that if we are going to start working on grass, it needs to begin small and easy.  E.G. Allow some start time for grazing to get the initial burst out.  Then allow periods of grazing between behaviors and slowly push for longer training than eating. 

 

Video of Playday: