Many of us have horses who go too fast when we ride – it may be out of nervousness, excitement, or very commonly lack of balance. Some horses can also get quick out of discomfort – so as with many behavior issues – always rule out physcial problems first.
To correct a horse that goes too fast, the answer is rarely bigger bits or stronger equipment. Instead, we need to be slow the horse down then reward what we wanted – the horse going slower – by releasing pressure, not continuing to “hold” the horse to keep him slow. You may have to work on other components as well, such as your horse’s balance and your own position in the saddle to help him maintain the slower pace, but the key is that release when your horse does the right thing by going slower. If your horse is naturally very forward moving, it may take many reminders telling him to slow down, but once he learns that this is what you want, he can respond confidently to your “slow down” cues.
To quote Angelo Telatin during a recent clinic, “Riding is not about pulling, kicking, turning, it is about rewarding good behavior by dropping the tension in your body.”
Riding a horse that goes too fast can be a scary experience, causes fear and anxiety. For tips on how to handle these emotions visit my Calm & Confident Free Resource