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LunaMorrow

Incorrect Canter Lead

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Hi everyone.

 

Darcy is becoming a relaxed and soft little Arabian now, but he still has a lot of trouble picking up the correct canter lead going to the right.

 

I know that he can canter with that lead completely fine, as I have seen him running around in the paddock, cantering on the 22" rope and cantering ridden with the correct lead.

 

My question is regarding how I give him release for the correct lead so that he sees the comfort in getting that lead. Should I let him canter for a little while or stop him after a few strides? He likes to canter so I'm inclined to let him do a lap around the arena; but I'm also not sure if maybe I need to be stopping him after a few strides to let him think about it and have a lick/chew?

 

Also, if he picks up the wrong lead should I ask again, stop him then ask again, stop him completely or let him canter on the wrong lead?

 

Thank you in advance :)

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Hey Luna

I no all about this one HAHA! Im keen to hear what others have to say as Im still helping my pony through this but I would think to try focusing on helping Darcy find release in the correct lead canter. So once he transitions properly leave him be to canter around a lap or too before stoping him. Try think about letting him go forward as the release and reward for picking the correct lead. If he picks the wrong lead I would be stopping him as soon as I can and asking him up again. You dont want him getting used to counter cantering so bring him back to the trot straight away if he picks the wrong lead and then offer up again. Im sure he will get the idea of cantering on the right lead pretty quickly if thats the only way you let him canter forward :). Good luck and have fun with it!!!

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Hi Georgia.

 

I have tried that, but I don't think I've been fast enough to stop him as he transitions up. I'll try being quicker and see how that goes. I'll just have to wait until I get my new saddle (I've outgrown my old one), because I don't want to be doing quick starts and stops bareback until we can get this canter going properly.

 

I have so many bad habits to seemingly fix up from his old owner! Hopefully he will see the release in the correct canter lead soon and we'll be on our way.

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Focus on the lateral softness on the ground and ridden and the leads will come when they are calm and willing as Georgia says. Homework cards will help it's not about just the assignment or the task.

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Hi Shane.

 

We can get the correct lead sometimes, it's just not consistent. I have been working through all of the homework cards too.

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Hey, sounds like you're on the right track. There are lots of 'doing' things that can help you get that correct lead but its definitely about finding the release and as Shane said lateral softness is the key. Make sure you have a laterally soft and relaxed trot before you ask for the canter. You really need to think about opening up for that correct lead so you may have to accentuate what you are doing for a bit so your horse is getting release and comfort for the offer. And as Georgia mentioned if its the wrong lead come back to the trot and ask again. If you are clear and not getting emotional in the task it should come together nicely :)

 

Have fun, keep smiling :cowboy:

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Hi Luna, Meredith has been over here helping me with my horse and getting a correct left lead. Ditto to everything everyone else has said and especially what Jen said about opening up. Make sure you are sitting right back on that outside seat and opening up off that front. Keep focussing on that release! And all the homework..it'll come. Don't make it into a thing as Meredith would say!

 

Good luck and keep us posted!

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Thank you everyone.

 

Hi Jen. I haven't been able to practice much as I have grown out of my saddle so I've been stuck bareback! I just bought myself a bigger saddle yesterday (hallelujah), so I'll try opening up more when I ask for the canter today and see how we go. It is a little tricky to open up bareback sometimes when trotting.

 

Thanks Alexia. I'll try today and I'll let you all know how it goes.

 

Hi Jill. Right now I'm working on the 3 purpose plays, the trail walking/sideways (float loading), the liberty and the bareback homework cards.

 

I think I do understand what he means and Darcy is definitely more laterally soft now than when we started and he can pick himself up and move sideways as well as flex easily and comfortably standing still or in motion. His body is also moving side to side as he moves now too, which is really good.

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Just an update.

 

I went out with a mindset of us doing it and we did!

 

It took us a little while to get used to the new saddle, then we trotted around and Darcy was nice and soft so I opened up on his bad side and he got it right the first time! :D We did a nice big laps of canter then I stopped him with energy and gave him a big rub.

 

Then we went his good way and as I was asking him by opening up a kangaroo jumped out of the bush about 10 metres behind us and Darcy shot forward quickly, but I relaxed instantly and he stopped straight away.

 

We did a lap of some nice soft trot and I asked him again and we went up to a canter on the correct lead and we did a lap, then stopped with energy.

 

Hopefully soon he will always strike onto the correct lead :)

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Thank you Alexia.

 

We got it again today!

 

Turns out its actually to the right that he struggles.

 

I found flexing him in and then asking helped him strike off on the right lead.

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Sounds like you are on a new pathway! Well done, Luna!

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Great work Luna! Mindset is so powerful isn't it! And nothing like a Kangaroo to put the cat amounts the pigeons, so to say!

 

Your definitely on the right track, keep checking your flex to see that he is soft before you ask for things!

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Thank you Jillian.

 

I will do. I just can't wait for Darcy and I to make it through Level 2 and start on Level 3. I know that we can get there :)

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Well done Luna. If you have good transitions (snappy), a great hindquarter yield (indirect rein) and you sit back and focus up and out, your leads will get easier and easier. And Darcy will get release by you just leaving him alone. :)

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It's amazing, isn't it? It's like a switch being flipped. At first it seems impossible, then you get it once, and then it becomes the norm!

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Thank you Meredith and Alexia.

 

It's getting better and we got the correct leads bareback today!

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Well done Luna!

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