Do you squeeze then kick, or just kick, or scoot your fanny in the saddle or squeeze then tap with crop. or squeeze and then whack with the crop? Do you tap with the crop or whack with the crop and do you use the crop in front of the saddle or behind....Or do you slap your rein from side to side just in front of the saddle? Just curioius what different ideas riders have on this...

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my trainer just wants Oliver nice and light, even if he doesn't move fast.... so as soon as he moved forward, I had to quit bugging him... I think Steve would think kicking is like nagging and like Fiona said, they can feel a fly.... so let's try being nice and not kicking... and rewarding the slightest try.... he did say I might have to ride in a spur and learn how to use it.. but I don't think that is the case either.. I think they understand energy so that is what we try now...
You are so right on this! I don't want criticism heaped on me nor do I care to toss it out on anyone else.
Sometimes it is in Gods hands and we do need to pray for the horse and maybe the rider too.
It wasn't that I criticized her or told her how to ride. I asked her what she does before she kicks. It was a legitimate question not a criticism. I expected to hear that she pushes with her seat or squeezes with her lower leg or upper leg or lighter with her heel. I have just started using my calf with a gentle squeeze and release, a couple times if necessary and then a flick with the crop on the shoulder. So I did wonder what she was doing but obviously that isn't how she took it... not knowing my recent situation.

I asked, "How does anyone else see this?...***. besides that I have to mind my own business and keep my mouth shut"!*** I had that part figured out. I don't go around telling people they are doing it wrong. I have had that happen to me and know how much I appreciated it....Not!!! Fortunately there is little of that going on at my current barn.
I am planning on getting my MP3 player working and downloaded with some music so I can try to block all these other distractions and just focus on my own horse and try to stay out of trouble. I know I can't point out where I think people are doing it wrong.
I really liked the idea of hitting our own boot rather then our horse. it'll take some experimenting to see which works with Cash. We've had great improvement in the last couple weeks since my current trainer suggested brief squeezes with my calf. I had been using my heels.Thanks for sharing your successful methods of riding.
I have found that squeezing with my heels or kicking my heels seriously de-stabilizes my seat. These actions bring my heels UP, when my heels should be DOWN. I can feel my whole leg weaken and it can take me a few strides to get myself back into proper position, heels down, knees down, weight in the stirrups, looking forward and up.
Much better to hit my leg with my crop, especially when I wear half-chaps. Then I stay secure.
I agree, I don't do well with the kicking thing. Coordination is becoming something I'm realizing more and more is very important...Not just sitting there as some make it look like. So much to master! Improve in my case.
Hi All,
Thought I'd add my two cents...
A great way to sensitize a horse is to do exercises that get him/her anticipating the forward aid. an example would be a variation on Tim Stockdale's "The Fives". Five steps forward, five steps back. Five at trot, five at canter, five at walk five at trot, five at shorter trot, five and lengthened trot, etc. When I do this, my horse gets so sensitized, I barely have to breather the forward aid and he is off. :)
sometimes shirley in this horsey game you can't win for losing... :) help is criticism.. actually, my therapist told me that it is in how you receive information not in how you give it.... :) I'm sure you were trying to help... I seriously do NOT go near other horse people ever..... I don't want to hear them and I don't want to keep my mouth shut.... so I am not properly socialized, LOL...
So, I suspect I am not properly socialized either! But, I have to be around others since I have to do boarding. I'm working at being more of a loner but it's not my nature. I like to compare notes and techniques when there is respect from both sides. That is maybe not possible. In this instance I did not respect several of the things she was doing as far as she was pushing the horse and I expected him to wig-out on her. But THIS time he got thru it. Yesterday the lady was leaving as I was coming and she'd had a good ride but I didn't see if the horse enjoyed the ride or not. She also let someone else ride him. She was very friendly and chatty so I guess she's not too niff-ed at me. I don't know if I said this or not but the horse was trained thru Level 1 with parelli and I can see he knows parts of the upper levels. This new owner does not know parelli techniques so she can't see how a horse would react to some of her actions. They'll have to figure it out without me. And I'll have to let them figure it out without me. I've GOT to stay away and out of it. She generally grooms her horse right in front of Cash's stall.
BUT, as far as the kicking goes I really wanted to know what she was doing before she kicked. Some people would have responded by simply saying what they do before they kick. Anyway, no matter how she responded to my question, I must be more distant. She may have been feeling my energy and I was upset for the horse. The upset only grew the more I watched them. I was curious to see the new horse. They will probably work threw this okay as many people do. But I still expect some sort of blow up before all is said and done. We'll see.

Thanks for your response.

I never had this problem at my other barn but they know me better and knew I was trying to learn things rather then criticizing. But my old barn is dissolved now as a functioning boarding facility. The horse trainer from there is working for someone else now training their fancy Spanish breed and I still get them confused. Andalusian I think. There's no going back. I still meet with a few of my fellow boarders from there a couple of times a year and enjoy that.

But, I must admit that I do think I'd be much better off if I was a hermit of sorts. Out in the boonies with my horses and husband. As long as my husband could get sports on TV , he'd be okay. But he's much easier going then I am.
Have a great ride and as always
Keep Horsen Around!!

Again, I've been on here way to long and I have some people coming over later and all is terribly cluttered as is my brain with all these thoughts bouncing around
Well, like I said in my earlier post, before I ask for the walk or an up transition, I always gather my reigns and come to a soft contact with the mouth.

This is usually enough to get them thinking about going forward. As a side effect of this, If I lose a reign or throw my reigns entirely away it signals a slow down (or stop from walk)

As for hitting your own boot, well again that depends on how sensitive your horse is to something like that, You're the Parelli follower right Shirley? I would imagine you've done a great deal of DE-SENSITIZING with your horse and he's pretty tolerant of things like sounds (which is really what he would be responding to if you hit your leg)

I may sound like a meanie for just saying to pop him one, but this is the CLEAREST aid, and that's where I would start. Then modify it over time to fit your needs/style. Also I only use a whip or crop on the shoulder for side maneuvers, turn on the haunches never for forward movement (also a Parelli fundamental) Your horse naturally wants to move away from the pressure, (or in this case a pop of the whip).

So if what is required of him is forward movement, it would be most natural for him recieve a "push" from behind, another Idea is to maybe not pop him, but just apply pressure with the whip right behind your leg
All good thoughts! I do know that Cash does respond to a crop on his shoulder to go forward or on his hiney...don't know the fundamentals of this except he does respond with a sense of "She does mean it"....and he goes.
What do you mean by "pop him one'? Clearest aid? I do think it could become necessary to give him a good whack 'wherever' or he could just continue to let me nag him . My original trainer used to get frustrated with me for tapping him too lightly. Initially it worked but I could see it becoming a repeat problem. I'm finding the better I ride and keep it interesting, the better he is responding to the most mild squeeze. He's also responding better to verbal commands. Counter productive to do some of the off line things with Parelli. I guess I'm gonna be mixin and matchin fill I figure it all out. Ha! Not likely.. But, I'm tryin. And there is the song, "I'll do it my way"!!!!!!!!
This sounds like a good exercise too! I'll have to leave the canter off for now. When I get less tense, it is going to be easy. About OMG 2.5 years ago (in frigid cold weather) we started to canter. We had a couple of really good attempts and then I ripped my groin muscles and then bounced around on that cause Cash got so excited to finally be doing the canter with me. My guess is I got so frazzled that I probably didn't use my reins to stop. I don't know what else gave way but I was bruised from below the knee to over the top of my leg....the whole back of my upper leg. It was extremely ugly and painful. I have cantered briefly twice since then in warmer weather. Once went nicely. The other time Cash got all excited and the gate to the arena was wide open so off we went not back to the barn, he just wanted to run with me. He likes it... I should too. I got frazzled and did not use my reins again .I just kept yelling whoa. Finally I heard someone yelling 'pull the reins' and I did and he stopped immediately.
There is a lot in my head but it's having trouble getting to all my body parts! LOL! But seriously!!
Thanks for the idea though, I really think that might help Cash and I all the way around.
Wow Shirley, that sounds unbelievably painful!! Glad to hear you're back in the saddle. I think you're on the right track with your intra-barn relations. Of course, I'm a mouthy nutter, so I'll share my opinion anyway. ;)
I'm a fan of transition work to get a horses engine in gear. It takes a long time, but the results last a long time too. I also employ a lot of leadline work. It's just backing up and turning around and stopping when I stop, but it gets them focused on me and my body language. It does translate to the saddle. Again, it just takes time. For more immediate results, I like Jane Savoie's breathing legs. You take your legs and reposition them further back toward the flank, then squeeze. It WORKS! Another good trick is to use a dressage whip laid across your thigh to tickle the hip. Getting at a point behind your position is often the best way to motivate a hoof dragger.


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