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xarbensxmusicx

Lead Changes Help Please read

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I'm a jumper, but I seriously need your guys' help. I have Arabian Regionals on the 20th, and I'm showing equitation, but my mare doesn't know her lead changes, she gets them, maybe 30% of the time. But I need her to get them 100% of the time in 8 days. I can ride her almost everyone of these 8 days, but I don't have much arena space, unless I want to ride in water, but that shouldn't really be a problem. Do any of you have exercises to teach your horses their leads?

[ 06-10-2008, 11:13 PM: Message edited by: ArBensMusic ]

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your not going to get solid changes in a week.. sorry. solid changes take alot of time to achieve.

what/how have you started working on in an atempt to teach your horse changes?

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I have to agree with the above ^

A horses learn lead changes differently... take for example my horse that was showing FEI juniors and we had to do flying lead changes. HEEEE never got them for about 3 months... we were doing them everyday. I had to take him to shows and even though it was embarressing we continued on saying "its just one mark." Then SUDDENLY it just clicked! He got them 100% of the time perfectly no rushing or anything. I know what you are going through but a horse has to be ready.

A horse also needs to build of strength to do them because to get a true lead change you can't just throw them off balence. This will cause them to be late behind yadda yadda yadda. They have to be able to sit and switch. Doing some strength exercises would help. LOTS AND LOTS of simple changes and transitions.

The most important thing that will greatly affect your lead change is the QUALITY of the canter. Doing lots of canter walk transitions will get him to sit and use his hindend. Cause if he is la la land and rush around he won't get it. Get him focused and attentive. Of course again this takes time but once you have it... it makes EVERYTHING alot easier.

Make sure when you do a lead change you dont look for it FEEL for it. Don't twist or tilt because it will throw the horse off balence.

Just go in and have fun!

So don't push your horse to get them this week... because chances are you still won't get them. There is no science or easy tricks to fix this. Its better to train them right the first time... so what if he doesn't get them? Continue on and forget it happened. Rome wasn't built in a day but it was sure as **** knocked down in one. So work towards them and if he doesn't get them do a simple change. I know its hard to think about when u are at a high competition but you are riding FOR YOUR HORSE... so do whats best for him.

[smiley Wavey]

Hope this helps and good luck.

[ 06-11-2008, 01:43 PM: Message edited by: OlympicDreams ]

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So far I've been having her switch leads over a pole, because it helps her get the feel for it, but then when I try to do it without the pole, she only changes the front. Maybe I can get a video of what I've been doing so far. I know it takes time, but I've been doing these switches over a pole for about 2 months. and she just isn't getting it.

also I had a question, are horses that have auto lead changes taught that when they were young, or did they just know them?

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i think their just more comfortable for those horses...they tend to also be more athletic but that dosent mean they can do them on cue...my horse knows her lead changes but if she dose them she bucks though shes never been trained to do them

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First of all, as it has already been posted, you are not going to get your changes in 8 days. Just not going to happen.

Secondly, hunter/jumper "changes" are quite different than dressage changes. Often, one will see in the hunter/jumper ring, changes, where the horse is not as engaged and just tosses the weight from one side to the other and swaps because the focus is not as much on engagement. They are different sports and look for different things.

In dressage, changes are introduced at 3rd level. The horse has already started true collected work at second, although you will often hear people mistakenly talk about "collection" at earlier levels, it is not truly asked for until 2nd level. The basic preparation for changes do require the horse to sit and carry the weight behind (collection); be confirmed in c-w-c and w-c-w, couner canter, and the rider really needs to have and independent seat/leg/hand.

As far as how to start the changes, the way we are starting them with my young horse (and with a young/inexperienced horse it is often easier with a wall) is to go across the short diagonal in the canter, at the quarter line walk, then pick up the new lead. When this is confirmed then you ask. There is a whole lot going on, so it is always best if you have someone who KNOWS what they are doing to help you.

There are some threads on UDBB on changes right now as well.

Good luck--that's what we are working on this summer as well.

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Like i said ArBensMusic different horses take time... my horse took 3 months to do them... so it doesn't mean she wont get them.. it just means it will take some learning.

A pole does help but nothing is better then having the right canter. Please don't rush the learning process for one show. These are important. Read what i posted before it explains alot.

A quite of few people do teach there dressage horses lead changes at a young age simply because for a young horse it is easier to learn. However, that doesn't mean and older horse can't learn them. The horse i taught to do flying lead changes was 12. So it can be done... and again i cant stress it enough.. IT TAKES TIME. Simply as that.

[ 06-11-2008, 05:41 PM: Message edited by: OlympicDreams ]

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"auto changes" are a hunter thing.

Imagine the chaos of them in a dressage test!

I doubt you can do dressage changes in 8 days, sorry. Not good ones, not correct ones, not without years of solid dressage behind you.

Maybe you can pull off flat hunter ones, but I can't help you with those. Maybe ask the hunter board. [Wink]

Just don't blow your horse's brain pushing this.

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