Do you ever find that you lose connection with your horse during transitions? That his head comes up or he hollows his back? Or maybe that he rushes or blocks? Or perhaps you just feel tense and out of sync? These are all really common as transitions can be tricky!
Here are my top 4 tips for improving transitions:
1. Prepare. Spend the time making sure your horse is listening, moving well and is balanced before even asking for the transition.
2. Keep the rhythm. As you ask for the transition, keep your seat moving in rhythm with your horse. Make sure you’re not tensing up or trying to force the transition.
3. Wait for it…. If you lose it, just back off and reconnect and then work up to the transition again. When you wait until you’re both connected and in rhythm together, you’ll get the best transition you can.
4. Reward! Make sure your horse knows which transitions are best – mark and reward the best ones to keep him clear, motivated and enjoying the training.
Watch the video (above) to see this in action as I work through it on my horse, Freckles.
Hannah Weston is one of the three equestrians behind ‘Connection Training’, a form of horsemanship and training which involves using positive reinforcement methods to create a supple, responsive, and most importantly a HAPPY horse.