Hey Marv, greetings from Thomasville, NC.
My wife has a horse that is great on the ground, great in the roundpen, but temperamental in the open. He will follow another horse, but by himself he stops, circles, and goes when he wants. A crop will get him going again just long enough to let you put it away. We are not super riders and had a trainer work with him to neck rein, which worked well, until he was home about two months. We have two other ponies that are sweethearts and do most anything that you ask. They are all in the same pasture and the Morgan is the boss. What would you recommend?
First of all, I'm not all together sure your horse is trained. I think he may be rideable but he is almost certainly not trained. Secondly I think your horse doesn't have a sense of place and by that I mean he doesn't have a clear picture of where he fits in the leader / follower dynamic more commonly referred to as the "pecking order."
Of the two I believe the leader / follower dynamic is the thing that needs attention first. He and you need to get it straight which one of you is going to be the leader and call the shots.
One way you can accomplish that is to send for a free copy of the herd dynamics procedure that I put all the horses I work through before I do anything else with them and put him through it. For your free copy of the bonder Click Here. In a few moments you'll receive an automatic email containing the URL of the procedure. You can put him through the procedure and see how that helps.
I also have the Bonder explained and demonstrated in depth in a DVD video titled "Mentally Connecting With The Adult Horse" This video will show you how to establish a leader / follower relationship with practically any horse. Click here for video info.
Now we come to the training part...
He has not been taught to go forward when told and to go in the direction you want at the speed you want.
Most people try to teach this from the saddle and enough have enough luck at it so that people keep doing it. Whenever you train a horse from the saddle you have no connection to the ground. All you have to brace against is the horse and you are at the mercy of the horse's whims. When you teach these things from the ground you can anchor yourself to the earth as needed and enforce your directions.
Longeing and ground driving your horse will teach him to go where you want him to go at the speed you want him to go. You get him used to responding to you from the ground and he'll respond to you from the saddle. Longeing is more than mindlessly circling your horse. Longeing is essentially driving your horse with one line, ground driving is essentially longeing your horse with two lines. Both of these activities teach you and your horse how to communicate with each other and can help put you on the same page.
Both of these activities are both a just a little deeper than what most folks think. If approached systematically with one step building to another things fall into place with little hassle and confusion on either the horse's part or yours.
They are also beyond the scope of a web page to explain well and luckily I have videos covering those areas as well...
Best to you...
Click here to check out my very reasonably priced DVD inventory covering many of the subjects featured on my site's pages in greater depth.
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