Warm up your horse with basics. Many trainers start off training the horse on the bit, and if you’ve decided to do this, it is even more important to start with simple movements that your horse is becoming familiar with. If you’re training an older horse, warming up with the basics creates an association in your horse’s mind between their “usual” ride and how this “new” ride is connected. During the warm up, you’ll need to start with simple forward motion and check for straightness, rhythm, and contact.
Establish forward motion. This is the key to a successful training session or ride. If you gently squeeze the side of your horse and it starts directly forward, you’re all set. If a gentle squeeze does not start your horse forward or your horse is fighting the bit instead of moving forward, you may need to provide reprimand and reinforcement.
Always avoid squeezing harder and harder to urge your horse forward. In the long run, this will leave you with a poorly trained horse and an exhausting ride.