Tuesday, February 17, 2009

According To H.T. part 9

Now that I am beginning to be able to control his speed and getting him relaxed in the walk I will begin working him in his gait. If you notice I am progressing his training as he allows me to. Your horse may need a little more time to respond and stay consistent in his gait. At this time I have not tried to control the type of gait he does other than by speed. If your horse is trotty you will need to work him different than if he is pacey. The definition of a trot is a two beat diagonal gait. The pace is a two beat lateral gait. The gait I will be working for is exactly between the two and it will be a four beat gait. Let's say our horse is trotty. The first thing is...you do not want to put any shoes on the front feet. I will keep his foot trimed short in front. If this does not help in getting him to a four beat gait, then I will try other things, but for now I will try my riding skills to get him started. If I can get him to hit (meaning to travel in gait) for one or two steps, then I know that I will probably be able to get him to hit all the time, in a short while. I will try to adjust his speed to where I felt him "hit" and then work him at that speed. Sometimes this is fast, sometimes it is slow. Consistency is what we are aiming for.


Beth said...

Hello H.T. and All, Congratulations on doing such a fantastic job getting your blog up and running! It's been lots of fun reading it!

Bill and I met you, Wilda, Larry and Vera almost two years ago when we brought our Toco Motion baby, Rocky, down for a visit. We actually made the long trip to KY from MD to visit some friends who live in Georgetown, and we still reminisce about the wonderful day we spent with you.

Rocky was bred on your farm. We bought him as a two year old from a couple who have now become wonderful friends. Rocky is our first mountain horse, and pasture mate to our palomino TWH and a little Spotted Saddle Horse. We never dreamed a horse could make such an impact on our lives! Bill started showing Rocky, and he's doing quite well–but more importantly–he's having a blast. As for me, nothing in the world makes me happier than riding Rocky through the woods, enjoying the wildlife and incredibly smooth ride! He's got a spectacular gait, and boy, does he like to go!

We started him pretty much the way you described on the ground (following Clinton Anderson's lead) and actually had a very knowledgeable trainer in the area get on his back for the first time. There were so many unknowns when we bought him, and I actually thought my husband was out of his mind for even considering a two-year old who wasn't even close to being under saddle at our ages! But as they say, the rest is history. Rocky will be 5 next month, and he is an awesome horse. I've judged dog trials on his back, won our class at a judged trail ride competition, successfully completed a bomb-proofing clinic... the list goes on and on. I wish I had space and time to have more horses!

carol said...

Thanx Ht for the informative blogs! This is all new to me but I look forward to using all your tips on Dark Illusion (jedi). I bought him in Nov and thought I was crazy - 67 and coming home with a2 1/2 yr old stallion! But he's a sweetheart and putting all the arabs to shame. I can't wait to get saddled up. He's really a joy and I hope to ride him bitless! What do you think??? This blog thing is relatively new to me but I'm not set in my ways yet!@!! Keep'em coming and thanx. Carol from Pittsburgh

horseofcourse said...

I love reading your blog. I am learning a great deal about this breed. I have been in the Arabian world for 20 years and have just discovered the Rockies. All 3 of ours are great and it is such a pleasure to ride a horse that you do not have to train every time you take them out! Also, I love just walking up to the pasture gate and here come all three in a dead run to greet me. I am looking forward to learning more about this fantastic breed.

Thanks for the great information and insight.

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