The Horse Reflects the Handler
A misbehaving horse is what we would call it but in reality the horse learns from the rider. If a rider yanks or jerks on a horses mouth he may start to refuse to move, toss his head, pull against the bit or many other after affects. Most of the time when people yank or jerk and pull back really aggressively is because the horse may have been confused as to which command you were asking. Make sure you are clear as to what you are telling your horse but do not be aggressive. There is no need to be overly forceful. Some may say it gets the point across and trains them to listen or they don't listen with out you being forceful so they deserve it. Well your aggressive nature with riding has back fired on you. The horse if started out the correct way with no yanking and pulling aggressively wouldn't have that problem. If you see a misbehaving horse odds are the owner or previous owner created the problem.
Is it to late to fix?
No! Its not to late to re-teach your horse the correct way to act whether it be ground manners or under saddle. It will take longer and a lot more patience when re-teaching something rather than getting it right the first time. Not everybody will teach something the right way the first time and making mistakes is how you and your horse learn. Being able to acknowledge a mistake is what will set you apart from others.
How do I know if I did something wrong?
Your horses will tell you! Listen to them! Pay great attention to how your horse reacts to what you are trying to teach him. If he reacts negatively then odds are what you are doing may not be the best way of teaching. This does not apply to all horses, if your horse is showing its normal behavior then it may just be how your horse responds. This is where you use your best judgment. Find what works for you and your horse and go with it. After a day of training take a step back and assess what you did. It will allow you to find mistakes or things you want to change for next time. You can keep a log of what you did for you training session. Write the date, time you started and finished for that session, then write down what you worked on and how your horse responded. In the future if you ever forget how you taught something then you can always go back and look it up later! Remember horses learn through repetition so make sure you find what works and do it the same way every time. Do not be afraid to have someone, preferably a knowledgeable horse person, what your training sessions. In most cases it will greatly improve your skills in one way or another.
You can also video tape you training sessions so it is easy for you to analyze what you did and you can determine what you might want to change. I highly recommend documenting your training in some way.
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