Depending on who we ride with, my horse has started to plant his feet, refuse to go forward, and begins to back when he becomes “frightened” down trail. Needless to say, this is obnoxious, ticks me off, and sometimes scares the bejeebers out of me (depending on the surroundings). I try to keep his nose pointed in the direction I want to move and apply pressure (legs, heels, rein to rump, etc), but he shuts down and moves more quickly in the wrong direction when I get too forceful (and stressed out).
When we had trouble like this on the main lane heading to the trails, I backed him up the lane to a certain point, turned around and moved forward. If he balked, we repeated this over and over again. I made backing work and moving forward where I asked easy. I won that battle and he balks very little on the lane now.
Again, I say only with certain horses I see he act this way. I rode with my husband and my horse acted like he was going to balk, but kept moving without issue. I ride with another more confident lead gelding, and he’ll follow that horse almost everywhere. I ride with a similar mare and he balks. I ride with a stubborn mare that pulls the same crap, he balks.It’s a struggle and I’ve about had it.
He’s responsive in the arena and around the grounds, but the lane was and trail continues to be an issue. Getting off and leading him is not an option as I almost think this is what he wants… and to go home (which I refuse to do). He knows his job, but is acting like a bratty teen.