Why! Are! We! Waiting! Schooling The Hurry Up & Wait

Training Journal


We’ve all been to shows where you get ready and then wait, and wait, and wait. Yet, we never practice this at home. At least, I don’t. Get on. Ride. Get off. That’s the general routine at home. Then we go to shows and expect the horse to be good with a different paradigm. Most horses are.

Since we have been blessed with a pair of princess cupcake snowflakes, I am now schooling things I used to take for granted. As an example, Rodney went over to Stepping Stone Farm to hang out under saddle. We stood in the middle of the ring to watch a lesson. We did a little bit of work. We watched this lesson. We went over to the other ring and watched that lesson.

In the beginning, he thought it was odd and a touch concerning to have horses swirling around him. Then in the middle, he stood still but started stretching his head down and doing weird things with his tongue. In any other horse, I would have interpreted this as obedient but bored. This horse never gets bored. At home, we’ve stood for 20-30 minutes while he quietly gazes at the world around him [Switching Horses]. By the end, he was was all, ‘Okay. They work. I watch. Cool.’

Does anyone else school this?

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

7 thoughts on “Why! Are! We! Waiting! Schooling The Hurry Up & Wait

  1. Clever.
    We should do more of this in our daily lives. I prepare for waiting. I bring my knitting, a book and my iPad for solitaire since I have FOB (fear of boredom).
    Maybe I should learn to just “be” waiting.
    I’ll try it and let you know.

  2. “Princess cupcake snowflakes” Love it!
    Priney was an accomplished show pony when I got her, and Chief only went to one event, so it has never been an issue.
    Since getting my service dogs, I just sit and “be” – sorta zen – while waiting in offices.

  3. New horse was fidgety when I got him. Couldn’t stand still to be saddled. Couldn’t stand still to be mounted. Couldn’t stand still once mounted. I spent about 10 minutes at the end of every ride working on just hanging out. Now? OMG. We can set records hanging out. Very chill. Would prefer standing in the middle of an arena (or rail) and just hanging out as opposed to doing just about anything else. Moral of the story? Be careful what you train for. 😉

    PS. He also can’t walk and poop at the same time. Must stop. Every. Single. Time. Then he discovered peeing under saddle wasn’t so bad either. Now we have to do that every trail ride, too. Sometimes multiple times. Go figure.

  4. Yes, but does he make a noise that would be illegal in half the states when he stops and poops?

    1. No noise. But I will say this …. he almost always has to poop, but he holds off until he absolutely must. In the mean time, he rides ….weird. I can tell he has to go, but he won’t if we’re working. So it results in lots of stops and starts and wait to see if he’ll unload. Eventually, usually about 8-10 minutes in, he caves and comes to a screeching halt and goes. Then he rides like a completely different horse. (Picture how frisky your dog is after pooping) Sounds pretty straightforward, but it’s not, and it took me a LONG time to figure out what the heck was going on with him. Same with having to pee out on the trail. He just rides …. weird. I can tell (now) that he’s thinking about it, but he hesitates to stop and go. So more stopping and giving him a chance to unload. Again, once he goes he rides like a different horse. Never in all my years of riding have I experienced this kind of behavior. It’s just who he is. When riding with those who know him we all get a good laugh out of it because he’s consistent as hell with it.

  5. “FOB (fear of boredom)” That and fear of wasting time.

    “Since getting my service dogs, I just sit.” I could probably Zen if I could have a dog with me. Maybe.

    As for poop, that reminds me …

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