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4yr old QH will not go forward


I have a 4yr old QH gelding who is beautiful to ride but only have two problems with him, one problem is he just stops in the middle of the ride and refuses to walk on, you really have to push him to walk on, he gives the attitude of being lazy but I don't believe that for a second, because of this behavior, I have taken to wearing spurs and only use them as a last resort and if I really have too.

The other problem is on the occasion of him stopping he has started to back up when asked to go forwards, the more I ask for him to walk on, he walks backwards in the completely different direction I wanted to go in, this usually happens when he doesn't want to leave a place we are at, like for an example, a beach, a grassy patch of grass where he was enjoying feeding or when I am riding past another horse in a paddock, he has only done this backing up business twice but I would like to nip it in the bud before it gets any worse.

Any suggestion you may have would be great, I have been riding for nearly 20yrs and I have had all sorts of horses with different behaviors but I haven't had one like this one before, he has a personality all of his own.

Thank you, Lisa

Hi Lisa,

I think you really only have one problem, your horse doesn't want to go forward. You don't mention anything about ground work either. Your relationship is formed on the ground first and foremost. I would strongly suggest you do a lot more ground work and soften this horse up on the ground before you ride him. If a horse won't move forward on the ground and wants to back up, I intentionally begin to back him vigorously. I may back him around the whole arena if need be. I would rather move with the horse and push him in that direction than try to restrain him or use any abuse to move him forward. But generally, after about 10-15 yards of backing, they are happy to come forweard of whatever else I may ask of them. I do the same thing under saddle. I will also move the horse to doing hind end yields (very tight turns around an inside leg) from the ground or saddle if he locks up going forward.

Remember, you may not be able to move him forward or backward, but you can always 'bend' the horse. Do you understand?

Let me know how it goes and the best of luck to you.

Sincerely, Franklin

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