|Florida 2 years 8 months old Paso Fino
facilities to work the horse are pasture, round pen, arena with experienced
Question: I want to train my 2 1/2 year old gelding Paso Fino myself
, and I have never started a horse before. For the past year I haven't
worked with him, other than grooming
It's like he's forgotten everything I have taught him. Soon I will be moving him to a stable with pasture board, and hundreds of other horses. They have an arena and a round pen. What steps should I follow in order to train him to be ridden? I weigh 125, and my horse is about 650, how long should I wait before I get on his back?
From Panelist Jonathan
You say he has forgotten everything you have taught him . This should be a very large red flag to you . A horse can only learn/retain according to the manner in which it was taught and bred . You say you have never started a horse before . Well learning how to do it from a question and answer board , IMHO , is a folly .
A question or many questions is expected , but training a horse is a
hands on moment to moment decision making process . I can only advise you
Sometimes when we brake them , we can't put them back together . In other words , sometimes with a young green horse we only get a millisecond to make a choice of action that only experience can assure won't cross the line to injury .
Sorry I couldn't help more.
From Panelist Stella
If you have difficulty catching him now, you will likely have a bigger problem pasture boarding with a larger herd of horses. That's his first "win" at getting over on you, having some dominance over you.
Young horses go through a mental maturation to develop self-confidence
as well as a
At this point, it is really important to "set yourself up for success," and first you will have to make up for lost time in the groundwork before having any thoughts of green breaking him correctly - to have a nice horse, and have it be a safe experience for you. Ideally, it would well be best to send him to a professional with the facilities, time, and expertise to get him caught up in his ground behavior thoroughly, and for the first few rides at least, going as much as possible yourself to learn along with him, and have the guidance to feel secure in going on yourself.
If this is really not possible, its best to upgrade the boarding situation
the first few months at least to full board with turnout, or smaller turnout
area where he can be caught, or be trained to be caught more readily, handled
daily, even several times a day, most particularly if you cannot work with
him daily yourself (which may be more difficult now that you have a baby
yourself). If you start each session spending half an hour chasing him
His success will motivate him to go on to bigger and better things,
If the foundation is solid, things progress smoothly, safely and naturally,
but if there's "bricks missing" from the foundation, you can pretty much
expect some problems down the road in one form or another. This is as true
for professional trainers as for amateurs.
From Panelist Erica
I would not even worry about putting a saddle on this young horses back
for another year and a half. It is too much for a young horse to bear on
his underdeveloped back to put any weight on him. A horse's back is not
completely ready for a rider until between the ages of 4 and 6. I prefer
to start a horse no younger than 4yrs as they are better physically, mentally
and emotionally to handle the demands of a rider, even for small amounts
In the meantime I would focus on getting your ground work put back in order, i.e. catching, picking up feet, etc. etc. Most likely he didn't forget, but simply has put it away in his mind as it has been so long. A mature horse can remember roughly up to 18 months clear as a bell before things start to fade, however a young horse will remember less. Depending on how you plan to start him changes how the methods go. There are many good ideas for starting out there - I will throw you what I have used with great success in the past and during the present, John Lyons Round Penning. You will be able to teach ground manners, advanced leading (no lead rope or halter), catching, stopping on the rail, turns, and come to you as well as moving onto saddling and riding.
Good luck in your new boarding facility!
From Panelist Carol
First, let's see if your idea of experienced is the same as mine.
I would consider someone who has spent at least 1,000 hours working with
and/or riding horses to be somewhat experienced. By contrast, a seasoned
professional trainer will probably have put in 10,000 hours or more.
This horse sounds as if he needs someone with experience to show him what
to do. If you are still sure that you want to start him yourself,
there are several good step by step programs sold on video tape and books.
I personally like the Parelli Natural Horsemanship program and also John
Lyons program, but pick a program, stick with
Carol Camp Tosh
Back to main page
Ask a Trainer