Thursday, February 4, 2010

Chase Me

So I started giving lessons to this young girl and typically what I like to do first is watch my student work their horse as they do every day. So I can see where they're at and where their horse is at. A mini evaluation so to speak.

So she begins to lunge her horse and I notice that she is chasing him around the lunge line, to the point where she is RUNNING literally all over the arena. I ask her what she's doing and she says that she went to a Big name Trainer Clinic and he said that when lunging you need to move as fast as your horse. Ummmmm no.

That's a big, huge, fatty no no. You should NOT have to work harder than your horse when lunging it. The horse should be respectful and NOT tug on your hands when lunging and should be just fine lunging in a set circle. Lunging is one of those things that should still be work for the horse, but not as much for you. Lunging is not to let your horse run bat shit crazy in circles. It should be controlled and productive. If your horse gives out a buck or two, no biggie, but then bring them back down to earth and back to work. Running after your horse is not doing a darn thing, except wearing you out and your horse isn't learning anything either, ESPECIALLY to respect you.

She was surprised when I took out one of the younger training horses I'm working with and had him lunging on a nice quiet circle, listening to all my commands appropriately. She couldn't believe you could lunge a horse that way. *Headdesk* which brings me to another little side point.

Use common sense. Would you chase your darn horse around while lunging, completely exhausting yourself and leaving your horse, ignoring you and probably laughing at you? No. So use your gut instincts or feel free to explore other successful trainer's techniques. Or if you like running around a deep sandy arena, well then have fun....

9 comments:

OneDandyHorse said...

Good point! I don't lunge my horse very much, she is blind in one eye and it makes it a bit tricky for her to see the commands from that side. I speak to her, but she usually just runs around and breaks the circle. I do gain control and she can be a good girl. I need to work harder at getting her in a complete circle, she usually cuts through to get to me, when I discipline, she starts running around. I know the basics of lungeing, but I don't do it often enough... fail on my part.

sandycreek said...

If I were to chase mine while lunging them, I would certainly scare them to death!
They would be wondering what was after us. LOL

Donna said...

I have to lunge my TB mare before riding her, doing otherwise would be a very bad idea, so thankfully I learned how to lunge correctly before I ever got on her. Makes you wonder who taught them to chase??

Paigeley said...

trainer x i have a question about lounging
we have a roundpen at my barn so i usually lounge in there without a lounge line. my horse continually cuts the circle and stops. when she stops if i get close she tries to kick my head. i've had a couple of close calls with that one. when she does stop i go to her side then use the lounge whip to get her moving again. When she cuts the circle nothing i've tried can get her back on the circle until she gets to the other side of the roundpen, she always cuts at the same spot in the roundpen. i've tried running towards her, whipping her over, getting really close to her on that side, none of it has worked. help please???

Holly said...

OMG, I saw someone lunging a WB like this once, the horse stepped over the line, the girl popped him with the whip and the horse went butt over head. Horse got 6 month vacation and it wasn't even her horse.

Trainer X said...

Paigeley~ Aren't you in the Seattle area????

Paigeley said...

no i'm not, i live in the south :)

Chelsea said...

I just want to say... I LOVE your bluntness and truly enjoy your postings. It often reminds me of some of the insanity I've seen in the equine world :)

Rebecca said...

I have a friend who does this. She's a "trainer" so you can never correct her how to handle a horse. We both have youngsters and over the summer we were teaching them ground manners and how to lunge. She would always laugh at me because I was trying to get my mare to listen to voice commands and signals, while she and her fugly stud were running bat shit crazy everywhere.