HIDEAWAY TRAINING TIP
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Every time you go to mount up, you put you foot in
the stirrup and hop around as your horse steps sideways away from you
or walks forward just as you are stepping up. How do you get him to just
stand still so that you can get on without a rodeo? This lesson will help
you to accomplish the stand still in very short order.
Start by taking your horse (with saddle and bridle
on) in the round pen or hook him up to a 25' longe line. We recommend
a roper or barrel racing rein that is a single line with each end connected
to opposite sides of the bit. If you only have split reins (two reins,
one connected to each side of the bit), tie the ends together to make
a continuous loop around the horse's neck. This is important so that the
reins are not dragging on the ground for the horse to step on.
The next step after he consistently stands still when
you press on the stirrup is to begin to mount. With the horse in the center
of your pen, put you left foot in the stirrup and begin to boost yourself
up to stand in the stirrup. Do NOT throw your right leg over to sit in
the saddle. Just step up and stand for a second or two and step back down.
If the horse moves at all, step down immediately and make him do two laps
around and take him to the center again to give it another try. Keep repeating
until he stands still when you step up. If he stands still, stay standing
in the stirrup for a full second (count of one thousand one), then step
down and pet him with lots of praise. Repeat until he consistently stands
still for you to stand in the stirrup. Repeat on the off side.
The final step is to put your right leg over and sit
in the saddle. By the time you get to this point, he should understand
what is expected of him and stand quietly. If he moves, get back down
and make him do the two circles at a trot. Repeat until he stand still
when you sit in the saddle. Don't forget to do the lesson from the off
side. You should be able to mount the horse from either side, anytime
you choose. This is good training for the horse.
This is a lesson that you can reasonably expect to
teach your horse in an hour or two, but if it takes longer, that is OK.
It is worth the effort and you will usually only have to do this lesson
once. If his behavior ever starts to slide back, start the lesson again
and he will very, very quickly get back in line.
Remember to be consistent and demand consistency from
your horse. Also remember to pet and praise him often when he is doing
things right. This lets him know that you want him to be successful and
that he will be rewarded for the good behavior.