Highland Pony Enthusiasts Club

Strategies for controlling a highland in full chuff

Jeanette - 18-8-2014 at 01:14 PM

I took Rannoch to an endurance ride yesterday on my own with no crew. We buddied up with a mum and her son for the actual ride. Their welsh cobs /part breds were both wearing martingdales which should have given me a clue. Rannoch has also done this ride three times now…so he was rather sure of himself and a bit cocky. A few minutes into the ride the Mum said to me, “what bit have you got him in?” and then “you need to stay away from my horse’s backend because he can kick!” (which he did in spectacular fashion with fly bucks) Hey ho..we all survived.

Pulling on the reins with Rannoch has never worked so I had to rapidly put into play all the “how to control a strong horse” strategies I’ve ever learnt including those learnt whilst driving a very powerful comtois horse and those practised whilst riding the chunky forward going cob whilst out in France with Mags! I felt like I was running through the checks a pilot might do

….figures of eight whilst waiting for the start...Checked!
..still breathing? erh , yep….Checked!
…engage core?....trying..Ok got it…Checked!
…pelvis correctly aligned in saddle?....erh, no , nowhere near the saddle..OK bum in saddle, not tipping forward…..Checked!
..shoulders back and down…no, up round my ears, OK got it..Checked!
…rhythm/ rhythm/ rhythm/ rhythm/…checked!
…wrists flexing?....yup..Checked!
..holding and releasing? ..yup..Checked!
…chin sticking out like a tortoise?….OK, it is, it shouldn’t be …OK, sorted….Checked!
….gripping with knees…nope, can’t in the new saddle…..Checked!

Any I missed?

.. (other than talking to Rannoch , which was like water off a duck’s back in the early stages!!)




[Edited on 18-8-2014 by Jeanette]

Mags - 18-8-2014 at 02:37 PM

Well Julipo did his best to train you. And you were complaining of Rannoch's lack of 'drive'. But now he knows what its about he's enjoying it. The same thing happens out hunting so perhaps put that idea on the shelf for the time being :)
Think we need a report on the new saddle too :)

Jeanette - 18-8-2014 at 03:06 PM

Quote: Originally posted by Mags  
The same thing happens out hunting so perhaps put that idea on the shelf for the time being :)


Quite!..more training needed for both of us before we go hunting. :blush:

Andrea - 18-8-2014 at 04:20 PM

:clap::clap::hail:I'm in awe of your achievements, Jeanette!

Hazel T - 18-8-2014 at 08:23 PM

No, pulling on the reins doesn't work on Duncan either. I am not going to try to advise you Jeanette as I am sure you know much more than I do, but I was wondering was he trying to tank off with you or was he just being forward going in walk. Maybe he was just really enjoying himself and was a bit enthusiastic or did you feel he wanted to gallop off with you?

ces - 18-8-2014 at 08:59 PM

:eeek::hail: - sounds scary to me! Well done you for being able to think through it all and act accordingly!

Jeanette - 18-8-2014 at 10:06 PM

Hazel he wasnt trying to tank off at all, he just wanted to get on with the ride at a faster pace that the two welshies. The challenge was to keep him from having his nose up the bottom of the mum's horse who would buck and kick out if he got too close. If we put rannoch in front then rannoch steadied up but the mums horse then bucked at the back of the ride. It's s training issue because I have not wanted to curb any enthusiasm offered at home. To his credit he stayed in the pace I asked for it was just rather onward bound!

Skylark - 18-8-2014 at 10:50 PM


ahh this sounds familiar eek. The best way I ever dealt with it was yes, on such events to bit up but my mare was also the type that would set against and pull through any bit if you just pulled against her. It was very much about half halting then allowing her to go forward, flexing and thinking about lateral work; for her the front door always had to be ‘open’, it’s nae easy I don’t envy you!