Riding Real
  

“STAND STILL”

If you’re like me I bet you want your horse to stand still when you get on. Of course you do. You would like to think you ride a well mannered horse, right? Plus, it’s super comfortable to have a horse that stands still as you throw your leg over the saddle.

Ideally you want to know that your horse would stand there all day if you didn’t ask him to move. He should be truly relaxed and content to be motionless. There’s a big difference between that attitude and a token five seconds of standing still all the while with ants in his pants!!

When a horse truly remains motionless and stays relaxed as you get on, there is a lot of benefit to starting your ride this way. Here are three additional reasons why it’s important for your horse to stay quiet as you mount up:

1. The number one reason is for your safety and for the safety of everyone around you. A horse who stands perfectly still and patiently waits for you to tell him what to do next is predictable … and predictability spells safety for you.

2. A horse who is content to stand quietly is typically calm mentally in that moment and for the next moments to come. He is willingly waiting for you to be the leader of the relationship … as it should be. His still patience sets up a peaceful and willing partnership tone for the entire ride.

3. When you’re truly patient and waiting to be sure your horse is quiet, you have the opportunity to relax and insure that you are in a calm frame of mind, too. This is an invaluable opportunity to begin your ride in a focused mental state. You can take this initial time to plan what your next move will be and how you will ask your partner to proceed.

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Comments

7 Comments on “STAND STILL”

  1. Phyllis JEss on Wed, 22nd Jun 2016 1:47 pm
  2. Hi Barb……………Amen to this article and there’s our picture !!! when buying a horse, that is my first requirement………..my dad always told me as a kid when I got on the go, one day I’d need to have a horse stand still to get on……….at age 77, I now know what he meant………….very good article…………Thanks, Barb

  3. Barbra Schulte on Wed, 22nd Jun 2016 1:59 pm
  4. Love your comment, Phyllis … and thank you for the permission to use your photo. You’re the best.

  5. Rodney Morris on Wed, 22nd Jun 2016 5:08 pm
  6. This was very well said. And it was true I think everyone wants a horse to stand still while they get on

  7. Lisa Schulze on Wed, 22nd Jun 2016 7:11 pm
  8. Thanks Barbra,now if I could only figure out how to make my fiery paso Fino mare stand still

  9. Roberta Rollins on Wed, 22nd Jun 2016 8:59 pm
  10. One little thing I’ve done to keep a horse’s mind in the moment is to step up sit down in the saddle, relax, and then have the horse stretch around near my leg to receive a treat; then alternate to the other side and repeat the stretch and treat. We then sit and settle after backing a few steps. After all of this there seems to be no hurry to get going.

  11. Mary Jean Riley on Thu, 23rd Jun 2016 11:52 pm
  12. Hi Barb! When someone asks me why I bought my horse I say “because he stands still” and I think they usually laugh! It’s one of his best assets for me as an older beginner! I’ve been able to show in halter, take clinics, mount as he stands over a log on trail rides, ground tie, trailer tie, without any hassle. It’s the one thing we do well together!

  13. Beth Yerby on Sun, 26th Jun 2016 2:25 pm
  14. Such a critical point to make! I always taught my young horses to stand still,when breaki/ng them. Now as an older rider it is critical. Since I no longer break colts, one thing that has helped with my prior trained older horses that wanted to move while I mounted, was making them move around and around, then stop, and show them to be still. If they moved one step, I made them move around a few more times,and tried again. They quickly caught on, that if they stopped, I would too! After mounting, I always make them just stand still before letting them take a step. I may move- adjust the reins, adjust in the saddle,pet them- but THEY doen’t move until I say to. Thanks for any other tips you have for us!

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