This one comes from the late and much missed Ken Clawson. I asked him for some tips about a horse I’d taken over the ride on who wasn’t the most honest at skinnies. I know how to start horses off so that they understand them from day one, but find it hard to correct the ‘ducking out’ tendency in a horse who’s realised that there’s a way round and learnt to get away with it.
He told me to teach it to look for the flags. Buy a couple of sets of flags (football/rugby/schools suppliers sell them more cheaply than show-jump/XC fence manufacturers) and put them on every skinny and corner you jump in the school. Teach the horse that it goes between he flags without question (you can start with a 6″ skinny that they can walk over) and eventually they will learn to look for them and go between them. I was sceptical but with enough homework it really does work. The horse who found it easier to go round now goes over. Success!