View Full Version : Won't Stand Still! :(

19-12-04, 04:58 AM
(on behalf of a friend)

what do you do if you have a horse that just will not stand still?!? when she rides him he is an angel and tries his best (he is 5), but when she goes to halt, for example down the center line, he refuses to stand still! It isnt the saddle, no one knows what to do!

please help!!!

19-12-04, 06:22 AM

I have mostly used two options.
1) Very boring and needs lots of patience. Sit there. Don't ask for anything, just to stand. At first neddy might jiggle, sidle, paw, chuck the bit etc, but just sit there. As soon as neddy stands still for more than 3 secs., get off and reward. Do this again, later and eventually neddy will get the message. As neddy gets quicker at standing, in anticipation to rid the load, stay put and play the game again. Your rules.

2) Might sound mean, but put hobbles on. Get neddy used to them first, so he learns what he can and can't do. Then get on and sit. Reward for standing. This may take awhile and only do this in extreme cases. An old horse breaker showed me this one when I broke in my last boy, as he was afraid of things on his back! He discovered it was easier to stand and let me on than think up all the bad things I might do to him!!

One more thing, when your friend rides out, pick silly places (in neddy's mind) to stop and stand around. Neddy might start fiddling again, but have something yummy in the pocket to reward en route!! Riding out together and having a natter standing around helps youngsters learn a bit of human etiquette:7

19-12-04, 10:09 AM
Good advice from esse. The other thing you could try on the ground is to make the horse move every time he fidgets. Then ask him to stand and if he doesn't, lunge him around a few more times. Eventually he'll realise it takes less effort to stand still.

19-12-04, 10:29 AM
My OTTB would never stand in hack line-ups and would get quite upset about the whole business (reminded him of lining up to race) Until we were at a small show and warming up for our hack class. It was a very hot day and the class before ours was dragging on forever (judge had called in 15 horses and was working out every one of them!) Most of the others in the class were waiting in the shade of a big tree but when I tried to do the same, horse would start running backwards and sideways. So off we would go and work for another 10 minutes. Now he is quite a smart horse and he soon got the message. Stand quietly in the shade or work in the heat! Haven't had a problem with him since. :-)

20-12-04, 06:59 AM
My horse was terrible at standing still (and occasionally still is). I was shown horseproblems website www.horseproblems.com.au (can I put this here, hope so) and followed what he said to do and it has helped heaps. He explains what some of us do wrong as well.

Basically I'd ask her to stand, she would then walk sideways/backwards etc. So make her do a couple of very tight circles, ask to stand and then release the reins as soon as she stood (like no contact, loop in the reins). She'd go to move off again, short pull on the reins and if she stopped...big release of reins and then sit still. If she wouldn't stop, do the circles again. The main thing was the big release of reins as soon as she stood still.
She learned to stand like this after about 2 or 3 rides.

Then, once she did this easily and because I want to do some competitions I would do less of a release (still took the contact off the mouth as soon as she stopped, but no big loop)and then very gently took up some contact, but not enough to upset her.

Now I am getting her to stand and wait in places that she used to be very frustrated at standing and waiting, like on the way home on the trails, after I first get on. This has taken a little while, but if you can be consistant it works well.

21-12-04, 02:39 AM
I'd suggest buying the Andrew McLean book. Lots of advice for problems like this one. He teaches horses to "park". Start out on the ground. When the horse is tied up or being led, and the horse must be responsive to moving forward and back. If the horse moves a step forward, move him a step back. If he moves two steps back, move him two steps forward. If he moves three steps sideways, move him three steps BACK (sideways is basically a desire to go forward - you could say the brakes are on at the front and the rear end keeps going!) Gradually stand further away from the horse, correcting any movement. It doesn't take long for them to pick this up. When they know what to do on the ground, do the same thing under saddle.