September 19, 2019

How to Teach Your Horse to Neck Rein

How to Teach Your Horse to Neck Rein

By Kim Baker

KB Natural Horsemanship

Aids your horse must know before you teach him to neck rein:

• Your horse yields to leg pressure – meaning if you apply left leg pressure your horse moves to the right.

• Your horse gives softly to the bridle.

• Your horse can follow his nose through a turn.

Photos by Louise Page
Photos by Louise Page
Caption for “Abby-neck-reining”: Here I’m asking my horse to move to the right (not a complete turn) with a neck rein followed up with leg pressure.

Begin riding two handed at a walk. You’re going to ask your horse to turn right by following this order of cues:

• Look to your right with your eyes and belly button.

• Lay your indirect (left) rein across your horse’s neck.

• Gently tip your horse’s nose to the right with your direct (right) rein.

• Follow up with left leg pressure (as needed) until your horse completes the turn to the right.

• As soon as your horse turns, release all aids and go back to neutral two handed riding position.

• Walk your horse around and repeat the exercise.

After your horse is turning well to the right, repeat the exercise to the left by reversing your cues as follows:

• Look to your left with your eyes and belly button.

• Lay your indirect (right) rein across your horse’s neck.

• Gently tip your horse’s nose to the left with your direct (left) rein.

• Follow up with right leg pressure (as needed) until your horse completes the turn to the left.

• Once your horse turns, release all aids and go back to neutral two handed riding position.

• Walk your horse around and repeat the exercise.

Caption for “Abby-turning –trot”: Here I am asking for my horse to turn.  I’m looking with my eyes and belly button to the left. I have tipped her nose slightly with my direct (left rein).  I have right rein pressure across her neck followed by right leg pressure.
Caption for “Abby-turning –trot”: Here I am asking for my horse to turn. I’m looking with my eyes and belly button to the left. I have tipped her nose slightly with my direct (left rein). I have right rein pressure across her neck followed by right leg pressure.

Soon you will find that you have to use less and less direct rein pressure to tip the nose. Eventually you won’t need it at all. You can always use your leg aid to help solidify your neck rein request to your horse during your teaching process. Avoid trying to pull your horse with the neck rein into the direction you want to go – this will only confuse your horse because you will actually be pulling the opposite way you want to go. For example, if you’re going to the left and you pull so hard with your right neck rein, it will activate the bit and cause your horse to be pulled to the right and then your horse will bump into the left direct rein and become confused and possibly blow up. Keep your hands level and don’t pull. The key is to ask and reward your horse for moving away from the pressure. Always reward the slightest try. Ask and release, ask and release until your horse completely understands the concept. Then you can ask more of your horse until all you need is neck rein pressure and he turns.

Photos by Louise Page

 

Kim Baker

KB Natural Horsemanship

Author, Holistic Healing, Animal Communication, Horse Clinics, Lessons, Natural Horse Training and more…

Building quality partnerships and lasting relationships from the ground up.

Cell: 303-981-2127 | Email: kim@kbnaturalhorsemanship.com

PO Box 1077 Elizabeth, CO 80107

www.kbnaturalhorsemanship.com

Share