Barrel Racers, how do you get your horse to run? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 08:13 PM Thread Starter
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Barrel Racers, how do you get your horse to run?

So there are many different ways to get your horse to run its fastest when doing barrels, so I want to know how do you get your horse to run its fastest?
I Kick very hard at first then I scream "HA,HA,HA" and that is what gets my mare to run her hardest!


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post #2 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 08:26 PM
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I never kick. I have very sensitive thoroughbreds who would have a meltdown in the ring if I kicked them, and honestly, I really don't think it's ever necessary. I ask for a gallop like I would ask for a gallop in the field: Squeezing my legs and kissing, loose rein, leaning forward. They're racehorses; they'll run as fast as they're able if I ask.

Last edited by equiniphile; 05-12-2011 at 08:29 PM.
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post #3 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by equiniphile View Post
I never kick. I have very sensitive thoroughbreds who would have a meltdown in the ring if I kicked them, and honestly, I really don't think it's ever necessary. I ask for a gallop like I would ask for a gallop in the field: Squeezing my legs and kissing, loose rein, leaning forward. They're racehorses; they'll run as fast as they're able if I ask.
Well my mare is a QH so if you dont kick she will just walk, lol she is very lazy when she wants to be.
I would understand how racehorse's dont really need a kick to run fast.


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post #4 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 09:26 PM
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I give a little slap with the end of my reins! That usually makes them run their hardest. I also give a kick. I had a horse a couple of years ago, it took forever to get her to run, but when she ran, she was flying. I had to tie a piece of raw hide to give her a bit of a slap with to get her to run

It's the thoroughbred, ... It's the racehorse that's charging out front and all we want to do is get in your wake and go with you.~ Proud owner of Southern Lady, a Thoroughbred mare.
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post #5 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 09:35 PM
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i'm beginning to train my new guy for Barrels, and i just tap him and we'll go! he's very sensitive to cues and he's a QH as well


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post #6 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 10:13 PM
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I teach my horses to enjoy running so I only need a verbal cue and a shift of my seat. Basic physics means that the more you flap, kick and hit in the saddle, the more wind resistance you'll get and the slower you'll go. Not to mention the more you throw your horse off balance. I don't believe for an instant horses being kicked the ENTIRE way home are running any faster then if they'd been urged quietly with the leg and voice.

If I ever had the nerve to hit my mare to go faster, she'd pile my rear end into a fence.

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post #7 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 10:22 PM
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yeah my new guy is the same way, just a slight "tap"(squeeze) and he knows to go, and boy does he enjoy stretching out those legs of his! i'm sure he'd dump me ASAP if i wacked him too lol


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post #8 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by lilkitty90 View Post
yeah my new guy is the same way, just a slight "tap"(squeeze) and he knows to go, and boy does he enjoy stretching out those legs of his! i'm sure he'd dump me ASAP if i wacked him too lol
My Paint filly has a need for speed, hehe. I turned her loose in the field for the first time late last summer, basically just let her have her head and clucked. A lot of horses take awhile to gallop full out because of balance, and she got a few strides in and went YEEHAW and went hellbent for leather! There's no way I could have made her go faster!

I really find just teaching them to LOVE running will make them try their hearts out for you every single time. I find voice commands most stimulating for them!

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post #9 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 10:33 PM
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I need a field to run in to get Abby balanced at a lope/gallop instead of an enclosed arena in circles, then go back to the arena to work on barrels.

I kiss for a trot and then a little squeeze will get her loping. If I'm off balance, she'll crowhop and since she has fast lope, by the time I'm all good, we're doing a 180 because we've reached the end of the arena. She's got a bouncy lope, so it takes me a stride or two to get situated and balanced.

She loves to run, that's for certain. If I lunge her and she's in a particularly mareish mood and doesn't want to listen to me, she'll lope until she can't lope anymore.

Last edited by Poseidon; 05-12-2011 at 10:35 PM.
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post #10 of 25 Old 05-12-2011, 10:38 PM
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I don't run barrels, but I do a significant amount of high-octane cattle work and how fast a horse is willing to run is all about the training that they get. Every single one of mine is always ready to give his all when I take a forward seat and squeeze just a bit with my legs. No spurs, no kicking, no whips needed. If he is feeling sluggish, a smooch or a quiet hiss is all it takes to snap him out of it.

Around my area with the work that I do, the terrain doesn't exactly encourage a person to take their legs off the sides of your horse or get their butt out of the saddle at any time. I can only imagine how hard I would eat dirt if we came upon a sudden gully or dodged a tree stump and I was riding like this. Or, heaven forbid, my horse stumble.


Not to mention that in my experience, the harder you kick a horse, they will suck their gut up in an attempt to shield the pain of the next kick. Which essentially shortens their stride and makes them run slower.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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