Why is my horse pulling on one rein more than the other?
When you ride your horse you notice that your horse is pulling more on one rein. The other rein hangs more or less loose. It just seems that the horse does not want to take the contact with the other rein. This is a problem that many riders have.
What is the possible cause?
The cause is not in the horse’s mouth or the bit that is used. It is related to the crookedness of the horse. Every horse is “crooked”, which means that every horse is naturally asymmetrically developed. Just as every person has a degree of crookedness and is left or right-handed, for example. If we as a rider do not solve this crookedness in our horse, this can lead to injuries due to overloading the horse.
For example, the horse that “holds” on the right rein is a left-bended horse. This means that the muscles on the left side of the body are shorter and stronger. The muscles on the right side are longer and flabby. In this case we call the left side the concave side and the right side the convex side of the body.
If the left-bended horse is walking on the left hand, the convex right side makes it look like the horse is holding on the right side and does not want to take the left rein. This has to do with the posture of the horse. His posture is concave/hollow on the left side and convex on the right side. That makes the contact on the reins uneven.
Tips for improvement:
- Check whether you accidentally keep your outside rein too tight and make sure to give the horse enough space to move his head and neck
- Check if your horse falls over the outside shoulder and if so, ask the horse with the inside rein so that it comes off the outside shoulder
- And one very important one; namely work on straightening the horse. By means of exercises that train the horse’s muscles symmetrically. The long flabby muscles are made stronger and the strong short muscles are made more flexible, making the horse straighter in his body and developing a better balance.