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Stacy’s Video Diary: Jac Episode 35- “Do you always bend your horses head around when you mount?”

A viewer wrote in and asked, “Do you always bend your horses head around when you mount?”

In Episode 16, I showed how I teach my horses a ‘parking brake’ so that they stand still when I am mounting. However, later in the horses training, I want the horse to stand still on his own. The key to this transition is in the statement at 1:15, “Before I’m going to climb on his back he needs to to get these answers correct 100% of the time-without hesitation.”

Many horses don’t stand still when the rider is mounting because they were never taught to stand still. Often people ‘hope’ the horse will stand and then ‘correct’ or punish the horse if they don’t stand…but they don’t teach the horse a cue that means stand still.

I teach my horses that when I bend their head around, without any kind of ‘go forward’ cue, then they should stand still. I do this by bending and holding the bend until the horses feet stay still.

I use this ‘parking brake’ until it becomes a habit for the horse to stand still. As I become confident with them staying still I bend the horse less and less until eventually I am not bending them at all. Should the horse make the mistake later of moving while I mount I can simply remind them of the ‘parking brake.’

If you have ever struggled to get a horse to stand still while you are mounting you may want to consider going back to the basics with that horse.

 

 

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Stops with Stacy: The Waggoner Ranch brought to you by Tekonsha

Here it is…the first ‘Stops with Stacy’ featuring our visit to the historic Waggoner Ranch in Vernon, Texas. We actually went to Electra, Texas to the horse headquarters…you know you are on a BIG ranch when it overlaps different towns!

The ranch was established in 1849 and is approximately 535,000 acres which makes it the largest ranch in Texas under one fence. We went over for the day to ride and spend time with the head trainer, Ben Baldus and his crew.  We knew Ben years ago but this is the first time we visited him at the Waggoner.

Touring the ranch is like walking straight into a history lesson. Back in 1945 E. Paul Waggoner bought Poco Bueno for the outrageous price of $5,700 for a yearling. People thought he was crazy to pay that much but Poco Bueno is now an American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame Inductee, Champion and Sire of Champions. Looks like Waggoner had a good eye. Poco Bueno is buried on another section of the ranch and many of the horses carry on his bloodline.

Jesse and Stacy visit the Waggoner Ranch

Jesse and Stacy visit the Waggoner Ranch

The guys offered to take us on a tour, take us to lunch or start some colts…I hesitated for about 10 seconds because I want to see the rest of the ranch but watching them START COLTS jumped out of my mouth even faster. Thankfully they invited us back so maybe I can still get that tour. Did you know? When Poco Bueno died he was buried in an upright position. There has to be a story there. I will have to go find out more details on that.

For those who are wondering those shots in the beginning are of the ranch, Major Cattle Company, where we are currently living. Maybe one of the ‘Stops with Stacy’ should be a tour of the Majors ranch. I’m open to suggestions, if you have an idea for a ‘Stops with Stacy’ feel free to post it in the comments.

Thanks again to my sponsor Tekonsha, the leader in electronic trailer brake controllers, for coming up with the concept and the name ‘Stops with Stacy’, I think this is going to be fun!

 

 
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Posted by on April 7, 2014 in Life, Stops with Stacy, Video

 

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