When to Tap
It’s when things go right that you have to push your horse. Are you the type that feels the opposite way? Do you get the impression that when things go right, you want them to stay that way?
Actually, when things are going smoothly with your horse, this is when you can ask for more. It’s listening to you after all, so go for it! Enjoy a bit of a challenge. Your horse may even be happy about it.
The important thing to remember is to use your legs appropriately. First, if you want your horse to move forward, use a gentle tap. It may take a while to get it to understand, but with time, it will. Afterwards, the double-tap of your heels and calves will mean more – it will be the time to move the legs quicker and go faster. You need to teach your horse to understand that movement if you want to eventually do whatever makes you both enjoy the ride.
However, try to do this with as little leg as possible. You shouldn’t have to put that much pressure on it to get it to move at the speed you want. So don’t nag – just tap. When it’s time to go faster, use a double-tap. This is the equivalent to a wake-up call. Then, keep your calves on him until you get what you want. The horse will just keep moving forward until you let go.
Let your horse continue at this speed, then ask for more. Yes, this is a good thing! Even if it gets it wrong in the beginning, it will learn! Put your legs back tight, and let it fly! Say a few words of praise to let it know you’re enjoying yourself.
The only thing you need to learn properly is when to tap with your heels to teach it to move faster. Once the speed you want is reached, that is when you tap for more. Even if you make mistakes at first and don’t tap at the right time, you’ll learn. After all, you aren’t perfect, either.
After a few weeks you will notice a big difference and the both of you will enjoy your riding even more for it.