hunt seat canter - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-27-2009, 01:59 PM Thread Starter
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hunt seat canter

So Im a mostly western person in the process of switching to mostly hunt seat. What is a good hunt seat canter pace or cadence? Ive been working on getting April to not rush it too much (seems to get quick underneath herself so many half halts, stops, rollbacks, etc...) but this weekend my mom watched me ride and told me it is looking (or forming to be) too western pleasure (minus the really short stride).

I pretty much grew up on a 14.2 hand western horse with a short stride and now April is a 16.1 long strided horse and it just feels fast. Any advice?

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post #2 of 7 Old 04-27-2009, 06:39 PM
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-27-2009, 07:58 PM
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For hunt seat horses, you still want a nice slow cadence, just with more extension. For over fences, your horse should have about a 12' stride. On the flat, it will be shorter, usually around 8-10'. But it's the same priciple as western pleasure. Rhythmic gait, rounded, with a slow cadence. Nothing should look or feel rushed, but they should be covering some ground.

Here's a linke to a video of myself on youtube. The first is a tb hunter, with the type of pace and form you would want on the flat (even though we're taking a small fence in this video).
This one is a QH at a show in HUS - just to give you something to compare it to.

Hope this helps some.
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-27-2009, 10:34 PM
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Sandsarita's video of Chance in HUS is what I like to see and I think what your goal is. I like a nice cadenced clean legged canter. You need forward motion. Make sure she is lengthening her stride not just quickening her legs.

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post #5 of 7 Old 04-27-2009, 11:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys!!! She seems to really stride out and I have a video but it is like 15minutes long from our first show a couple weeks ago.

Laura- she seems to stride out good but rushes or goes really fast. I really like our left lead but the right lead isnt as strong yet and she seems to drop the shoulder if I dont stay on her. Maybe I will get some practice video in the next week or so and you guys can let me know what you think.

thanks again all

It's not the will to win, but the will to prepare to win that makes the difference.
- Paul "Bear" Bryant (Former college football coach)
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 08:52 AM
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The main goal of hunter is "long and low" meaning -- a low headset and a long stride. It's the most efficient way of going: to cover the most ground with the least amount of effort.

Every ride, good or bad, teaches you something new.
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-12-2009, 11:52 AM
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It depends upon the breed, I have a Arab and I train with a world class stock horse trainer. She tells me to push my horse out at times because as we call it he is not "tracking up". The main goal of a hunt seat class is to look ready for your horse to take a fence at anytime. A good moving horse, no matter the speed show have it's back hoof land in the indent from the front hoof. The speed differences then come from how your horse tracks up correctly to show the horse at the best of its abilities.

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