HorsesRiding & Equestrian Sports

How to Tip Your Horse to Backup

In some cases it is convenient to support your horse, or if you show you may need to show the reins to the judge. It is required in cross country courses to overcome obstacles and is often required in pleasure or equestrian courses. The bridle back is handy when you’re on the trail to give way, maneuver your horse to open the gate from the saddle, or grab a juicy apple from that abandoned apple tree. This is a great exercise in learning control for both the horse and the rider. Horses will naturally back up on their own, but it can be a little difficult when they have to balance the rider on their backs. Here’s how to prompt your horse to back off.

what do you need:

  • Your horse is fixed and ready to ride.
  • Your helmet and safety stirrups or safety boots.
  • Flat riding surface. It is difficult and potentially unsafe for a horse to backtrack on uneven ground.

That’s it:

  1. stop Let your horse stand quietly for a while.
  2. hint Your horse and your seat and legs seem to be calling your horse to walk.
  3. Squeeze back slightly with your hands Hold the reins while tipping with your legs to prevent forward movement. (You can use voice commands like “back” quietly.) Don’t let your hands lift, and keep the tension on the reins. A squeezing, softening, squeezing, softening motion on the reins may be more effective than a direct pull back.
  4. This The horse should back up One pair of diagonal legs, then another pair. Only a few steps are required at the beginning. Once you and your horse get better at the reins, you can ask for more steps.
  5. release tension When your horse obeys, pull on the reins and let the horse take a few steps forward.

If your horse does not support

Of course, your horse must be trained to regain the reins before you try it. Ideally, your horse will nose down and back away quietly without wiggling to either side.

If your horse resists prompting, work from the ground so he can learn balance and understand your voice commands. Head shaking or rooting may mean that the horse doesn’t know how to balance when backing up, or you may be pulling on the reins too confidently. If the horse turns or swings, you must make sure that you are pressing on both sides with the same legs and that your hands are even on the reins. If you’re having backup issues, it’s best to work with an instructor or coach.


  • Keep your back and hips flexible. Don’t be stiff.
  • Look straight; don’t drop your chin.
  • Use your legs to keep the horse’s hindquarters straight.
  • Hold your waist and resist the temptation to lower or raise your hands.
  • Keeping the rump soft, follow the movement of the horse’s rump as it steps back.


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