My mare has three modes: bolt-y, beautiful, and balk-y. She toggles between the three pretty randomly… one moment, she’s going nicely, relaxed, even tempo, in front of my leg and super responsive…and then suddenly she won’t stop breaking into a faster gait, fighting the rein, on the forehand and bracing… then only minutes later, she absolutely refuses to move - NOTHING can move her except a few minutes of poll flexion and lateral movement, or occasionally a few minutes of groundwork.
I’m getting gradually better at managing this behavior, and I know it’s probably partially pain related (but I am managing that and seeing some degree of improvement), but she’s had these tendencies forever…
Anyone have experience with a similar horse? Any exercises that might be helpful? What do you do to settle a jiggy/bracy horse? How do you respond when a horse goes into “statue” mode (besides just whips and leg, because I do that and sometimes it works… but often it makes things worse and causes her to buck)?
I know this is a complex question, but any insights you have would be appreciated!
Yes, I know it would be wise to consult a trainer and work with my instructor, and I will do that shortly, but in the mean time I’m looking for some new techniques to try.