Is it bad for a gaited horse to canter? - Page 2
 
 

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Is it bad for a gaited horse to canter?

This is a discussion on Is it bad for a gaited horse to canter? within the Gaited Horses forums, part of the Horse Breeds category
  • Canter cues for gaited horses
  • How to build a topline on a gaited horse

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    10-19-2011, 09:08 PM
  #11
Yearling
It was over 30 years ago, but I walked, trotted, cantered and galloped my TWH. He still gaited naturally without any encouragement (which was my favorite). Don't know where these storied about trotting or cantering a gaited horse would ruin their gait. Or the stories that you had to train them to gait. Our TWH would break into a lovely gait that I adored when going on long rides. We had him since he was a 2 year old and no one in the family knew how to "train" them to gait.

BTW: That is a lovely horse. Looks robust and well built like the horses that originated the breed were. Will a little conditioning he would probably make a great long distance horse.
     
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    10-20-2011, 01:07 AM
  #12
Weanling
Woah woah woah woah, so...it's okay to trot?!?!
Ughhhhhh I was working a TWH that was for sale. He came from a show Barn(put the pictures up here of his feet, midnight) the grandma came to ride him and buy him...she CLEARLY couldn't handle more than a beginners lesson pony. I had to go change and get on him to show his gait. I had him racking nicely and she told me to speed it up. Well it got so bumpy that I couldn't sit it if I had been velcroed down! So...being the English ride I am what did I do? I posted. Boy did she jump on me about you never post a gaited horse it encourages them to trot. What I WANTED to say was broad YOU ride him then, oh wait you can't. What I did say was it became too bumpy to sit, I have a bad lower back, I'm not going to be curled in pain later, if out want him to go faster, I'm going to post. Luckily he was sold before she even saw him ride. They wanted bloodlines. But I've always been told no trot. Well it never made sense to me, if its his NATURAL movement its healthy to use every once and again.
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    10-20-2011, 01:30 AM
  #13
Green Broke
^^ Options on trotting is a mixed bag of nuts, actually. Some gaited people think it's the highest sin against nature to encourage a horse to trot. A friend of mine almost had a heart attack when she heard of her TWH trotting. The man who owned my horse before me told me to always sit deep and never two-point, least your horse throw out the evuuul trot.

Some people think it's just great. A buddy of mine owns a racker who she trots as much as she racks. She says she gets bored sitting up there and likes to post a bit. Her horse still racks on cue without issues. The key is making sure you know how to ask for each gait properly.

Many novice gaited people don't realize the benefits of trotting sometimes. They assume it's harmful because it's a gaited horse; it's suppose you, you know, gait and stuff. XD Trotting helps build a lovely topline. Gaited horses who work in hollow gaits all the time sometimes have weak, nasty toplines and could use some trotting. Excessively lateral horses benefit from trotting as well.

...And of course some gaited horses find trotting so much fun they turn it into their default gait and give novice riders who don't know the cues a bumpy ride. What fun.

A little racking mare I use to ride had been worked in a hollow gait for so long she had a horrible pot belly due to improper muscling. Her top line sagged and resulted in sore backs a lot of times. Adding in an "extra gear" would have helped her keep her figure and avoid some chiropractic visits.


Anyway... Back on track. How about the rocking chair canter?
Tianimalz and SaddleDragon like this.
     
    10-20-2011, 08:56 AM
  #14
Green Broke
I am going to have to quit looking at your threads when you get a Walking Horse to work

Your BO might not know anything about how they should be ridden, but he sure seems to have an eye for good-looking horses; I like this one too

Regarding bits: Use what the horse is comfortable with. I have never used a twisted wire --- my granddad wouldn't even use them when we were teaching the young horses to drive.

Two of my Walkers wear a very low port with swivel shanks; I really like the swivel shanks. My third Walker has always worn a Mechanical Hackamore. The TWH I lost in a freak pasture accident wore a Dr. Cook's Bitless and loved it; not all horses adapt to a Dr. Cook's because every part of the bridle, except the browband, is a pressure piece.

As far as allowing/teaching a Walking Horse to trot - my answer is no, no, and no. It a person wants a horse that gaits and trots, their name is 5-gaited Saddlebred.

It's too easy to ruin a TWH by teaching/allowing them to trot; especially if the horse gets sold to a new horse owner with no knowlege about how to separate the two gaits.

Another poster mentioned they never had to teach their Walking Horses to gait. I have never had to either, yet I read on another forum about a 2 yr old with back legs that were too straight for a Walking Horse and couldn't gait well. At least that was the claim

So my personal take-away message from that alleged truth, is there are "modern" Walking Horses being bred out there for who is on their papers and conformation is going out the barn window.

If that is truly the case, I would stick with older horses or look to the Heritage Groups who are specifically breeding Walkers for their gaits, not because they have a pretty head or a flashy color.

Sorry to get sort of OT but, I was so excited to hear someone besides me say they never had to teach their Walking Horses to gait (my youngest is 12 and directly from old Foundation/pleasure blood) that I got carried away
     
    10-20-2011, 10:51 AM
  #15
Yearling
Oh just another wives tail, of course you can canter a gaited horse! I was actually told once that if you canter a Walker their legs will break.....really? What a load of milarky,lol. The trouble comes in when you cue for a gait and they move into a canter and you don't correct it, then your cues get all screwy. My boy Loooooves to canter and gallop, and honestly I think its wonderful for him. Helps with balance and coordination, as well as muscle development. I also am a believer that you shouldn't trot a gaited horse, but that is just my opinion.
     
    10-20-2011, 11:41 AM
  #16
Yearling
This thread began as a question on the canter. The short answer is that the canter will not adversely affect the gait in a gaited horse.

BUT, for some gaited horses (think show bred Walkers and Rackers and other very lateral horses) the accomplishment of a three beat gait is very difficult. For these horses the trot can be a waypoint on the road from gait to canter.

Put another way, it's not a destination, it's just a place to stop and do some work.

Then we continue on to the destination.

If, indeed, trotting were bad for most gaited horses we'd have to shoot about half the gaited population (including Walkers and Rackers) as about half will trot in the pasture at liberty. This may be sufficient "trotting muscle" exercise to address back issues. It might not be. It's an individual horse question.

I have said before, and will say again, trotting a gaited horse will cause no harm and may be very beneficial. But the rider has to understand and have a plan for the use of the trot.

G.
     
    10-20-2011, 01:27 PM
  #17
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guilherme    
a gaited horse will cause no harm and may be very beneficial. But the rider has to understand and have a plan for the use of the trot.

G.
Ack, I deleted more than I intended. That was a good way to get the point across.

My two that perform a running walk will mimic my trotting Arab if they're behind him in the pasture. The Step Pacer will not; he is a hard lateral pacer at liberty.

I have had no plan for the use of a trot for the last 21 years and were you a mechanical engineer in a previous life? Having worked for several that built power generating equipment, I almost think I recognize the symptoms
     
    10-20-2011, 04:30 PM
  #18
Weanling
The last twh was show bred and shown. The second you got on his back his head was up high and he was strutting around. This guy is much different. He carries a low head and Loos rein. Turner out he trots and cantered around the arena. On his back he prefers to gait. He DOES have a lovely canter though. And I know, he keeps getting beautiful horses. And I want them all.
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    10-20-2011, 05:15 PM
  #19
Trained
When I read the title of this thread I thought, "wtf?" (pardon my french, tee hee)
EVERY gaited horse can canter w/out ruining their gaits. EVERY gaited horse will trot out in the pasture. The gait (you named it/breed) comes as a dominant gene. If you cross them with another non-gaited breed, the result WILL gait. It is natural for them to do so, and they thoroughly enjoy it.
Though I discussed this on another thread, I'd like to mention that I was concerned about training my now 5yo KMHSA--he was a 3yo when I bought him--bc I had only broken/trained in non-gaited horses, and I didn't think I knew the correct cues. ALL of my sources and articles sent to me said that despite the very comfortable gaits, ALL gaited horses need to be trained to collect. My gelding, when asked to cross water a year ago--I was at an event and he was very fresh, so I was wearing him down--picked up a trot on a slack rein. NOW, when I cue for the amble (which is the SAME cue as for a non-gaited horse to trot,) I get an amble, on a slack rein, JUST like Dressage horses that are trained to their head set and will maintain it when the reins are dropped. When I get a trot out of him occasionally UNLESS the footing is sub par (like through the mud on a trail ride), I half-halt and asked again for the amble. DH (now in his 60's) bought this horse for comfort and he wouldn't be very happy if his big (16'3hh) horse started trotting with him!
Here is one article that you might enjoy reading.
MAKING CONTACT, How to use a bit, By Lee Ziegler
     
    10-20-2011, 08:07 PM
  #20
Started
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacksmama    
Oh just another wives tail, of course you can canter a gaited horse! I was actually told once that if you canter a Walker their legs will break.....really? What a load of milarky,lol. The trouble comes in when you cue for a gait and they move into a canter and you don't correct it, then your cues get all screwy. My boy Loooooves to canter and gallop, and honestly I think its wonderful for him. Helps with balance and coordination, as well as muscle development. I also am a believer that you shouldn't trot a gaited horse, but that is just my opinion.

Me too. I want a gaited horse because I want to gait, and I'd rather prevent trotting than try to fix it once it became a habit. I know with the Icelandic horse I rode - sure, he could both trot and gait, but I really had to sit up and keep a strong contact on the reins to keep him gaiting. If I let up at all he would get bouncier and bouncier until he was trotting. No thanks!

Cantering is different because it's a faster gait (for most) and the cues are very different. There's much less chance of the horse getting the canter confused with its easy gait.
     

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