Tuesday, January 31, 2012

William is Back Under Saddle


  Last week I decided Williams ground work has come far enough that he would be ready to go back under saddle. I won't lie, I was a bit nervous getting back on him, for a couple of reasons. Obviously, I don't want to get bucked off. I haven't yet and I would like to keep it that way. More importantly, I was hoping that all the ground work I had done was going to be successful, otherwise I would have to figure out what else the issue with him is and I really had no idea what else could be causing his scooting and bucking.



  The big test would be mounting.  He was always very tense while I got on, and did attempt to throw me when I was mid mount one day.  Not my idea of a good time.  I gave him a short lunge to get out any excitement and decided to get on with it.  He was fine for saddleing and tightening his girth.  A good sign since those acts would usually result in him being very tense.  I took him to the mounting block, and while I let him circle around me until he is comfortable, when I put my foot in the saddle and got on, he was noticeably relaxed and unscathed. 





  We did walk, trot, in each direction and there was no scooting or skittishness.  He did let out one HUGE buck, but I think it was more a playful thing than a trying to get me off thing.  I flew onto his head and he immediately halted.  This was good, the old William would have continued across the arena bucking.  I think it may have scared him, and he was perfect the rest of the ride.  I have ridden him 4 more times since that day and there have been no bucks, or scooting whatsoever.  It looks as though the time spent on the ground has helped him feel more comfortable under saddle and we should be able to continue on working him regularly now.


  Some video;


16 comments:

  1. I am glad he was a good boy for you and only bucked once. Hopefully he stays this way (:

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  2. I watched the video and I have a few observations. Take 'em or ignore 'em, I won't be offended in either case. :)

    When you mounted him, you kind of slammed him on his back. I'm not sure if this is how you normally mount, but try to mount a horse like you would hug a human. Ease in, and then settle into it. Body slams aren't as cool.

    When he scooted, I saw you get kicked into the back seat pretty hard and then tense up big time in the arms. I know this probably has some nervousness attached to it, but the seat is a driving aid that you don't want to punish through. Whenever I have a baby that wants to scoot or go forward in general, don't stifle that! Go with it! Otherwise it will be an upward battle later on when you can't get the forwardness needed on the XC course.

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  3. I do agree I didn't mount him in the most harmonious way, but I also wouldn't say I slammed onto his back. Since he nearly killed me getting on one day, I do try and mount as quickley as possibly. Obviously over time I can take my time more and be more gentle. I will work on this.

    In this particular video he spooked and wasn't doing his normal scooting that leads to bucking. I got left behind and pulled him up to prevent him from taking off bucking. I need to build more trust with him before I can confidently not react that way when he spooks. Thanks for your input.

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  4. I'm glad things sound like they are improving for you!

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  5. Hi BeBe-I set my Etsy up for you to order with shipping to Canada :) It's ready when you are! Thanks for your support of the OTTB! Also, my email is kristenshellenbarger@gmail.com, if u have any other questions, etc and to send me some pic's of you rocking the T so I can post pics of it on our FB page! xo

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  6. I gave you and award- I know you already had one BUT I enjoy reading your stuff :)

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  7. Looks good. He moves nice at the trot, even though he still is tense. He will look fab when you get him relaxed, which you are doing with all your hard work. :)

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  8. Awe william is so cute love seeing the progress you are making with him. Do you happen to know his blooodlines? my guy is a Trakehner and his Dam's Dam was Trak/TB mix. I have some what become obsessed with pedigree's lol

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  9. @DancingHorses His mom is : v=http://www.allbreedpedigree.com/stir+the+paint, she is distantly related to my first event horse :

    His dad is : http://tagaelen.webs.com/tagaelen.htm, pedigree here: http://www.cantrak.on.ca/tagaelen1.htm

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  10. It sounds like things are getting better! Good news!

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  11. I am a new reader to your blog -really enjoy it!
    I admire your work with William. But the mom in me has to say, I was worried when you were getting on so close to the collection of jump standards and such stored on the side. Maybe you weren't really that close, but from the video it looking like if he had really scooted or bucked over that way or you had to bail -that you could have would up falling into something. Maybe better to get on away from that stuff? Otherwise, I think you doing fine and should pat yourself on the back.

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  12. Audrey - I have definitely thought that myself. I try to mount him facing the wall so he can't take off, but he usually ends up turning around. Thankfully our mounting has become almost %100 better so soon enough I should be able to mount him further from the wall!

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  13. I've been following your William posts with interest. Thanks for sharing your journey. I tell my customers about your blog at every opportunity. Please keep posting, Matt Edgmere

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  14. Nice video. Looks like he's not difficult to be with. He just need to improve his horsemanship.

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