When to start running?? - Page 2
 
 

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When to start running??

This is a discussion on When to start running?? within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category

     
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        08-24-2010, 08:03 PM
      #11
    Trained
    I didn't start running my horse on barrels till he was about 5 and a half. I rather build a strong foundation on them first. Alot of the horses running in the pro rodeo are in their teens so like mentioned unless you want to do futurity runs, theres no rush. Do plenty of different things with your horse, go slow. Perfect your horse at the slower gaits before asking for speed. Mess around in warm up classes. It all depends on your horse for when to ask for speed.

    IMO, a lot of the younger horses arent just mentally equipped to handle RUNNING the patterns and being hauled. Don't let your lack of a competitive horse cause you to push this one (not saying you are).
         
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        08-25-2010, 10:08 AM
      #12
    Green Broke
    I agree, teach them to flex easily around the barrels and to perfect the turns at slow speeds so it will be easier when she is ready to run that she already knows how to turn and flex.
         
        08-25-2010, 01:44 PM
      #13
    Weanling
    I would have to agree with everyone else here. Two years old is way too young to begin running barrels. If you just want to be around the horse show scene, try showing her in Western Pleasure for a year, then maybe start training her for reining, and show her in that for a year or two. That will use up the three years for the horse to be mature enough to run barrels, it will also get her used to the atmosphere of showing. Just take it slow, and enjoy your horse!
         
        08-25-2010, 01:51 PM
      #14
    Started
    I don't see any reason why you can't start doing exercises that'll help your performance when you do run, but I think she's way too young to actually run the pattern. Slow lope at the most. I'd wait until she were at least 4 to run her. Preferably 5 or so.
         
        08-25-2010, 02:58 PM
      #15
    Foal
    I'm in the same boat as you. I bought a 2yr old (now 3) last fall with the idea of running barrels. I knew that I would have to wait a couple of years but I bought her anyway. She went straight into training for reining and now I have an awesome well rounded 3 yr old. Now what? I don't plan on spending any more on training as unless I wanted to actually show in reining full time she knows more than most horses. I started her on barrels already. She lopes the pattern perfectly. Mostly because she listens to everything I tell her. She really doesn't know the pattern that well. So my advice is to train your horse to know everything and then wait till he grows up. There are lots of things you can teach him. Like lope departures - should be able to lope off from walk in correct lead every time. Counter bending - if you are heading for a barrel you need the ability of moving his body over in a split second by just applying a bit of leg pressure. Lead changes - very very important in barrels, I see too many people whos horse changes at the 2nd barrel, should change right after first. What I'm working on to get my lead changes better is to lope in the right lead in a right circle then counter lope in the right lead going in a left circle then I'll straighten her out and ask for a lead change and do the same thing on the left lead. The only thing I have left to do on my girl is teach her the barrel pattern. Once she can do the pattern in her sleep (without overworking her) I will probably run her flat out late next year (4 yr old) a couple times at home just to see where we are at. I am only going to race her in her 5 yr old year so I can do futurity with her. She is my only horse and as much as I yearn to run barrels I have enough self control to hold off. Just the other day I took her out into the field and I asked her for a bit more speed than she normally gives to see how she would take it and she couldn't take it emotionally. As soon as she started looking a bit confused I quit. I have lots of time to get her relaxed with it. You should never ever push your horse farther than they are comfortable with.

    Hopefully that makes sense. I tend to ramble a bit :)
         
        08-25-2010, 07:38 PM
      #16
    Foal
    When should I start slow in the pattern because she learns REALLY fast!!!! She is alredy doin flyings spins (to help her have better turns) she is amazing at "one barrel turns". Next year I am planning on doing reining and owner trainer. She will be used to hauling because ever science she was one we have taken her to 6-10 shows a year and did showmanship and costume contests. Wehave also taken her to a few barrel races to let her get used to the noise.

    BTW I wasn't planning on runnning her soon I was just wondering if I could start running at home when she is 4 and a half or so.
         
        08-25-2010, 08:17 PM
      #17
    Started
    Start slow in the pattern at any time. Just don't do a lot of work. Practice it once or twice a week for just a few minutes at a time. Good luck with her :]
         
        08-25-2010, 09:10 PM
      #18
    Foal
    I agree with barrelracer892, you can start the pattern any time just take it slow and let her learn at her own pace. And maybe do different stuff around all the barrels. Do all right turns or left. Do the pattern counter bent. There is all sorts you can do. But most of all, have fun. That's what I love so much about barrels, it is soo much fun.
         
        08-31-2010, 10:01 PM
      #19
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rodeo Pro    
    The reason I am kinda in a hurry is because I don't have a different horse to run on. I just sold Steppin :( Also I want her to be a really good barrel horse and hopefully run in the pro rodeos.
    If this is your only horse, no offense, but that is all the more reason to let her grow up and fill out a bit more before really running her hard.

    A horse that is started "early" persay, I don't think will be any better than a horse that is allowed to come along a bit slower, become more mentally and physically fit, and then asked to run hard. The horses I raised, have learnt the patterns at 2-3, and we didn't add any real speed until their 4 year old year, only if I felt they were really ready for it.
         

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