4 TWH only wants to trot? 

 Indiana: TWH 4 year old gelding , new owner and ridden in Walking bit and regular curb bit with austrailian saddle in pasture by experianced rider.

Question: I'm new to the Walker world!!  Just purchased this horse.  When we "test drove" him he walked, now that I have him I can't get him to walk!!
The gentleman I purchased him from recommended that I not put a long shanked bit on him, because he has a good mouth.  He said to try different ones.  I put a bit on him, and he seems to gait fairly well, although for not very long, try the same bit the next day, and he will just trot!  

He has medium weight kegs on the front and nothing on the back, his toe is 4 1/2 and I'm not sure of the angle.

I don't know what to try to get him out of the trot, and don't know what to do myself, either way, slow or fast he's basically in a trot most of the time,  and if I slow him way down he feels like he breaks into a pace.  I don't want to keep teaching him the wrong thing.  And don't know where to start.  I keep a snug rein also.  

I'm just going to use him for a trail horse, but I also want him to do what he supposed to be doing.

What do I need to do?????

From Panelists  Laura

Since you just purchased this horse, your best source of advice is to talk to the person you bought the horse from.  He knows the horse and what he did to get a good gait from the horse.

Here are a few things to think about:

What type of saddle did you test ride this horse with?  The problem may be your body position on the horse.  You said you ride with an austrailian saddle.  This type of saddle tends to put you in more of a forward seat position and makes it difficult to sit "down on your butt."   A lot of gaited horses can't gait well with the rider's weight shifted towards their forehand.  They usually do better with the weight shifted more towards their 
hindquarters.  As they get more "set" in gait, they tend to do better with a centered rider.  The aussie saddle holds you in one position, which is nice for security but makes it hard to shift your weight back.  You might try a different saddle & see if it makes a difference.

The shoeing - kegs in front, bare behind, makes me think this horse might be a little pacey.  Are you bouncing straight up & down or slightly side to side?  I would suspect that the horse is either doing a pace or broken pace which can be quite rough.  Try riding your horse through some tall weeds or rough ground and see if he gets smoother.  If so, the horse is probably pacing rather than trotting.  Spend more time riding your horse in rougher ground to help him get smoother.

What type of bit was used when you test rode this horse?  Use the same type of bit and be sure the curb chain isn't too loose or too tight.  Again, talk to the person you bought this horse from.  He can at least tell you what he did with the horse.



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