What do you do if you are too scared to canter because your horse keeps getting faster? (FearLESS Friday Ep74)

Hey Fearless Superstars! Today I’m going to share with you some tools and techniques you can use if you are too scared to canter because your horse keeps getting faster?

This is a young Friesian who has not much experience. He kind of goes through walls. He doesn’t turn properly; he doesn’t stop properly. So all those things that you might be experiencing, hence why you don’t want to canter as well. So I thought it’d be cool to show a video of how I cope with that.

This horse is really inexperienced, he hasn’t had much time on the saddle, so I have a lot of work to do, and a lot of training to do to get him going properly, which is why he’s not competing, which is why most of you wouldn’t see a horse like this, because we wait and work at home until the work is good. So please enjoy this video in the spirit in which it is intended, which is to help you if your horse gets faster and faster in the canter, and what you should do about it.

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To Your Success,

Natasha Althoff

Full Transcript Expand to full transcript

Hey fearless superstars, welcome to fearless Friday. Today I’m going to answer the question, what do you do if you’re too scared to canter? Because your horse keeps getting faster and faster, and you can’t get the canter to slow down.

Okay, so this is a young Friesian who has not much experience. And he’s a really, really cool Friesian because he’s the hottest, in inverted commas, craziest Friesian I’ve ever ridden. Meaning he’s just super, super, super hot. So I thought it would be a super video to do for you guys, if you’re scared to canter because your horse gets faster and faster and faster and faster. Because that’s what my horse does. He gets faster and faster and faster and faster and faster. Plus, he’s really unbalanced, plus he’s really inexperienced, so he doesn’t have any buttons. He kind of goes through walls. He doesn’t turn properly; he doesn’t stop properly. So all those things that you might be experiencing, hence why you don’t want to canter as well. So I thought it’d be cool to show a video of how I cope with that.

For everyone who wants to comment that he’s too short in the neck, that he’s not going correctly, that he’s not being trained correctly, which is a German word. But it means yes, and I’m not here to do videos that show you everything perfect. I’m here to show you videos of where we are all at. This horse is really inexperienced, he hasn’t had much time on the saddle, so I have a lot of work to do, and a lot of training to do to get him going properly, which is why he’s not competing, which is why most of you wouldn’t see a horse like this, because we wait and work at home until the work is good. So please enjoy this video in the spirit in which it is intended, which is to help you if your horse gets faster and faster in the canter, and what you should do about it.

Okay, and I’m on his bad reign as well, so hopefully he’ll be nice and bad for you guys. Not that I want him to be bad, but I want it as close to your experience as possible. So he’s being good, he’s staying with me for the moment in the trot, sometimes he runs off in the trot as well. Now just get the canter. Okay, so it’s kind of balanced on the circle. But the minute we get to the long side, he takes off. So what I do if he takes off and gets unbalanced, I just do a circle, which helps him gets his balance back, which means he has to slow down a little bit on the circle because otherwise he’ll fall over. And then he takes off again. And then I say, it’s okay, I’ve got you. I’ve got you. It’s okay. And I try and keep that balance. Good boy. I’ve got you. I’ve got you. In the circle.

And you can see this canter’s, it’s too fast. I don’t want it this fast, I want him to seek his hind legs a little bit more. Wait for me a little bit more. Good! You can see there was go. But at never times do I pull him. You can see my reigns are really quite loose. And then for the circle it’s turn, give. Turn, give. Turn, give. I just want to help him find his own balance. And you can see he finds it hard to bend at the inside; he’s going around with the wrong bend. I’ll just change the reign, and you can see he’s going faster; I’m not telling him to go faster. Good boy. So we’ve trained him off the voice to come back in the trot. And canter here. And you can see it’s all really rough and wooly.

And this canter is too fast. I don’t want it this fast. But if I just pull on his head and say, “Hey, slow it down,” firstly he’s just going to get faster. Because if you just pull on their head, they pull back, and he’ll just dive and get tense. So I have to be really soft and open with my reigns, with my body. And just put him in situations with his body like the circle where he has to slow down and balance itself. Because if he gallops around the circle, he’s going to fall over. He has to slow down ever so slightly. Good boy! Good boy! And you can see the minute we kind of leave the circle, he kind of takes off. Good boy. And then back here is when he’s got it down. Good boy. Whoops! And that’s where this side he finds the circle hard, and he wanted to not bend through that circle, and then realized we were both going to go into a wall if he didn’t make the turn. And that’s what you do when you’re training a dressage horse. You put them into positions where…

Oops! We’ve taken off. And we circle. So the main thing is if you’re feeling of being out of control, fearful that your horse gets faster, just circle. I’ve one time taken 10 minutes to get down the long side because every time we’ve ended up… Good boy, good boy. So there he kind of stayed and didn’t take off. Because he knows the minute he goes into his own rhythm, oops! We’re off. So we circle. But yes, it’s okay if you do 30 circles going down the long side. You do one stride long, and then circle. And one strong long, and then circle. Good boy! And you can see, oopsy! Good boy. You can see it doesn’t take him long… Oh, we’ll go actually.

Cool. But you can see I still don’t have much control. Do I? No, as we openly get to an open area… Good boy. Good boy. And then the trot’s a little wild and wooly compared to the trot that we did have. Whoa, whoa. And I’m not going to pull him up. Just going to slow my rise. Give with the reigns. And try and be as soft, good boy, as I can. Yeah. So it’s kind of do the opposite when you’re riding a horse that wants to get fast, when you’re riding a horse that is hot, when you’re riding a horse that does these things, you want to hold the horse. That’s perfectly normal. But holding the horse only makes a horse like this more tense.

And a horse is stronger than you. He is massive; this neck is massive. He’s a big stallion. He could do whatever he wants. So I have to control the environment. I’m not going in some big 100 meter by 50 meter grass arena and saying, “Oh, why don’t you just go for a cantor.” He would go. So we control the environment, we use the circles to get the balance. We use the rapport with my body; you can see I just slow the trot, slow the trot, slow the trot, to get him to come back. And that’s how you do it. So enjoy, and I’ll see you next time.

If you want to know more about figuring out your fear, and more importantly, how to overcome your fear if it isn’t legitimate. If you are illogically fearful, and want to feel confident and joy and fun when you ride, then I really would like you to come to my free web class to teach you how to overcome your fear. And enjoy your riding again. You can check out the details somewhere around this video. I’ll see you guys soon!

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