The Walk is the hardest pace - The Horse Forum
 7Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 07:58 AM Thread Starter
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Western Australia
Posts: 3,225
• Horses: 3
The Walk is the hardest pace

And don't I know it.

The walk is meant to be a march, 4 beats to the stride.

Well my walk on my horse is like where going out for a Sunday ride, just strolling along, no marching what so ever happening there.

I've tried improving on it, but unless I ask every stride or every second stride we go back to the same old walk.

Just looking for tips? Anything really to help improve the walk :)
RedTree is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 09:59 AM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Colorado
Posts: 807
• Horses: 2
Where are you at in the training scale?

http://www.horsechannel.com/images/h...ng-pyramid.jpg

Since it builds solidly on the previous layer, you may be moving too fast between the rhythm portion and the impulsion part. It may be just a matter of spending more time working on those 2 in between phases. This is where you really find your horse being super responsive to cues and staying in front of your leg.
RedTree likes this.
Boo Walker is offline  
post #3 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 10:20 AM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,264
• Horses: 2
As a friend of mine has said many times, you buy a walk and a canter :). In truth my horse is the same way...his walk is fair...it is improving slightly but I am not sure it is ever going to be spectacular.

My trainer started with the basics..establish relaxed and long before going for impulsion. We started with the shortest rein where the horse was loosened up and striding properly, essentially at the buckle when we started. The idea was to keep the relaxation and allowing the withers and shoulders to move freely using just enough aids to keep the horse moving without changing pace. Once that was down, I still start with the long rein but slowly shorten them, again, maintaining the same looseness and pace. Once I started to shorten my trainer added in the impulsion aids, alternate side squeezing with the calf and holding the outside rein to contain the forward movement (not allow speeding up in the pace) to encourage and maintain the more open stride.

One thing about my horse is that speed at the walk for him is the enemy. As soon as he gets too quick he gets very short in front.
RedTree likes this.
tlkng1 is offline  
post #4 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 02:52 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Maui
Posts: 874
• Horses: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlkng1 View Post
...
My trainer started with the basics..establish relaxed and long before going for impulsion. We started with the shortest rein where the horse was loosened up and striding properly, essentially at the buckle when we started. The idea was to keep the relaxation and allowing the withers and shoulders to move freely using just enough aids to keep the horse moving without changing pace. Once that was down, I still start with the long rein but slowly shorten them, again, maintaining the same looseness and pace. Once I started to shorten my trainer added in the impulsion aids, alternate side squeezing with the calf and holding the outside rein to contain the forward movement (not allow speeding up in the pace) to encourage and maintain the more open stride.
....
What a wonderful way to start!
I've recently gone back to riding on the buckle, trying to regain the relaxation and looseness that got lost somewhere along the line. The canter is still the most troublesome: she gets tense, and I don't feel safe with reins that long. But we're working it out.

I don't worry about the quality of the walk. Far too soon. I think "strolling along" is good; or are you pacing? Sometimes walking in deep footing can help regularize the walk steps. If I can move from big-walk to slow-walk, I'm happy.
Beling is offline  
post #5 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 02:58 PM
Showing
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Missouri
Posts: 16,239
• Horses: 1
It's very easy to screw up the walk, especially when you're asking for more every stride.. it'll be easier for the horse to tune you out.

Once the horse gets marching, LEAVE IT BE. If he starts to dwindle, don't nag but a nice 'forward' cue, maybe backed up with a whip/crop.
RedTree likes this.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
Skyseternalangel is offline  
post #6 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 03:08 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,264
• Horses: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beling View Post

I don't worry about the quality of the walk. Far too soon. I think "strolling along" is good; or are you pacing? Sometimes walking in deep footing can help regularize the walk steps. If I can move from big-walk to slow-walk, I'm happy.
The walk being trained is for the quality..just doing it in stages keeping the looseness in the withers and relaxation. The impulsion aids and maintaining rein (outside) help to maintain the pace and frame. His walk has improved quite a bit with these techniques and I can now get steady overtrack most of the time.
tlkng1 is offline  
post #7 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 05:35 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 763
• Horses: 0
Walk is not the hardest gait, but it is the easiest to ruin and the hardest to improve what that has happened.

Why is it easiest ruin? Because it is a lateral progression...ie lh/lf/rh/rf. So if the rider hustles the walk it will become lateral lh/lf together and rh/rf together. By the same token if the rider does not allow the bascule/telescoping of the neck within the gait, then the horse will be blocked. So it is hustling the walk to try to keep (longitudinal flexion with a shortened outline) and over tempo (quick) which ruins the gait. Not the use of walk itself.

So riders generally are not taught to actually train the walk, and it becomes a forgotten gait which is allowed to become dead at the end of a ride.

When a horse is allowed to stretch, it may momentarily become slowed if the neck drops too low (it becomes like an anchor). In europe scores are lowered if the neck is lower than horizontal in a test because of that. When walking on contact (on the bit) the horse should be up/open and will then remain active as long as the rider allows for the bascule (and that may be quite a lot early on).

When referring to the training scale rhythm means pure gait with appropriate tempo and relaxation, and suppleness refers to lateral flexibility allowing for longitudinal flexion over time. Too often longitudinal flexion occurs too soon and affects suppleness and gait purity.
Kayty and RedTree like this.

Last edited by equitate; 11-10-2013 at 05:38 PM.
equitate is offline  
post #8 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 07:23 PM Thread Starter
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Western Australia
Posts: 3,225
• Horses: 3
Thanks guys, like the tips

And I think I may of been moving too fast with my horse.

I like the method your trainer has suggested tlkng1 and I will try that :)
RedTree is offline  
post #9 of 14 Old 11-10-2013, 08:23 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 763
• Horses: 0
Remember that filling out the outside rein is best done on a curved line, not holding it strong. And that the horse makes the connection and in not held in a frame (since walk has bascule to follow or the hind legs will not step through). And there is no impulsion in walk (impulsion requires suspension..ie trot/canter), there is activity/propulsion.
equitate is offline  
post #10 of 14 Old 11-12-2013, 02:00 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Maui
Posts: 874
• Horses: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by equitate View Post
Remember that filling out the outside rein is best done on a curved line, not holding it strong. And that the horse makes the connection and in not held in a frame (since walk has bascule to follow or the hind legs will not step through). And there is no impulsion in walk (impulsion requires suspension..ie trot/canter), there is activity/propulsion.
Could you elaborate on this a bit? Do you mean in shoulder-fore sort of thing, or on a circle?

Bascule: what do you think about the head going below the withers? My horse actually seems to step through more if I allow this. She doesn't stay there, but it seems to help stretch her, and improves the trot.

Thanks! This thread is turning out to be quite interesting.
Beling is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.



User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
flat walk vs running walk QHDragon Gaited Horses 13 09-26-2011 02:05 PM
Stepping Pace vs. Pace Vs. Rack vivache Gaited Horses 1 08-30-2010 09:13 AM
Western-Walk,Jog,Lope,gallop-English- Walk, Trot, Canter, Gallop...RIGHT?! thunderhooves Horse Riding 10 05-07-2010 05:26 AM
walk/trot - walk/jog farmpony84 Horse Riding Critique 17 09-28-2009 11:30 AM
One of the hardest things I've ever done... FGRanch Horse Talk 8 11-23-2008 11:29 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome