Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Riding in the Box

While we are riding if we can think of having a box surround our horse, first we will start with a rather large box, with lots of room to move forward, back and side to side, our goal will be of course to stay centered in the box. At first on a younger, greener horse, or maybe even our so-called broke horse, we will have trouble staying centered in the box, they may want to go faster than our box is moving and push on the front of the box, or they may startle suddenly and want to jump out the side of the box. This is why at first we want a larger box, so we can still be particular and try to center our horse but still acknowledging that they are greener and will need more room in the box. As they progress and we refine, the box will grow smaller, until one day it will be from the tip of the nose to the tail, from one leg to the other.

Today we are going to talk about your horse running through the front of the box. If your horse is going to fast and always pushing out the front, slow him down and bring him back to center, but don't hold him there, allow him to find center by releasing him and letting him make the mistake again. Try to catch the mistake though before it happens, the horse has to prepare to speed up before he actually speeds up, try to feel for this and correct it then. Sometimes you may have to exaggerate and not bring the horse back to center, but rather, bring them out the back of box and ride them back up to center. Play with this for awhile, remember that it may take some time, so don't get frustrated, keep a cool head, be patient and it will come. As your horse gets better at this, try shortening up your box a little to refine it, remember out goal is to eventually have the box reach from the horses nose to their tale.

Enjoy the Journey