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Tips To Help A Horse With A Short Stride Get Down Lines

Submitted by member: Jennifer

What exercise can I do to help me and my short strided horse get down the lines?  I have a close eye, and with a short strided quarter horse I seem to find myself adding.  She is a nice quarter horse… (champion at WEF 2 years ago).. even with me on her!  I use poles and cavaletti’s a lot. I watched all your videos and then some. I find when I try to do your exercises at the distances you have, I am galloping and she is strung out. My ring may not be as large either. Which makes it even tougher.

Answer by Bernie

Jennifer you have already answered, in part, your question. You have a short strided quarter horse and a small ring.

To some degree one can improve and lengthen a horses canter stride, however, you still may find it prudent to add a stride here or there in a line that may not suit your horses stride. That may be something you just have to live with.

Here’s some suggestions to help lengthen the canter stride:

First, make sure she is reactive to your leg to go forward.

Second, it will really help if she will accept consistent contact with your hands. Practice lengthening and shortening transitions, first in the trot, and then in the canter.  Take your time and try to lengthen the canter stride and not just go faster. Here is where having her accept your “Following Arms” will really help her with her balance. Practice these gallop transitions daily and little by little she should improve to some degree with her stride length. Of course, if you have the chance to practice in a larger ring from time to time this will be beneficial.

Video Recommendation:

shortening and lengthening your horses stride

Shortening And Lengthening Exercises Over Jumps
Julie Winkel
Join Julie Winkel & her students as they demonstrate exercises designed to shorten & lengthen the horse’s stride within lines. Julie discusses strategies to execute lines that present different types of distance challenges. Practice of these exercises provides additional benefits that include improved rider/horse communication and sharpening of the rider’s eye.
Running Time:  27 minutes and 19 seconds

View Video

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Bernie Traurig

As a Horseman, Bernie is renowned for not only his riding talents but for his teaching and coaching gifts. As a competitor, Bernie has represented the United States Equestrian Team both at home and abroad on many occasions and reached the top of the sport in all 3 of the International Equestrian Olympic disciplines: Show Jumping, Dressage, and Eventing.After amassing 60 years worth of training and riding techniques and experiences with thousands of horses, Bernie is driven to give back to the sport that has given him so much fulfillment and success.

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