Heres a little background of myself....
I own 8 TWH's. I've been to numerous shows, events, and competetions of TWH's. Ill be the first to admit, I know nothing of many of the breeds. I grew up riding TWH's bareback down old country roads and was lucky I got that instead of a stubborn donkey. Out of the hundreds of different shows and such I have been two in KY, I have seen 3 "big lick walkers". I don't attend shelbyville for obvious reasons, and mostly because I only like going when im in them. (I always get mad when I go to a show without mine and realize I could have won easily lol) however, once you get away from the big shows and WGC, its really not that common, atleast in KY.
As is everybody with the breeds the love, I fully believe that the TWH is the most naturally smoothe and gaited horses, and outdoes any other horse in the world. I have never put pads on my horses feet or built up stacks because it is useless. I want my horses because I like to ride. What am I going to do with a big lick walker on a 20 mile trail ride in the woods? It's the show and fame driven people that are the problem.
My personal ride, "Bo" is a 12 year old gelding. His daddy and granddaddy were WGC TWH's. I've been with him since day one, and out of all the horses I've rode is my favorite by far. However, in his 12 years of existence, he's only been flat shod every time, and only been shod by me.
Tomorrow, I will try to take video (if it isnt raining) of me riding him in his natural 2 gaits, the walk, and the running walk. I do not canter, I do not trot, and I do not gallop. Since the day he dropped on the ground he has had the two gaits I will put him through, and I think some of you not familiar with TWH's other than the scary "big lick" ads you see everywhere will be surprised at how elegant and smoothe these horses are when rode correctly. He's a bit of a firecracker, but the longer you ride, the hotter he gets, and the more smoothe he becomes.
I know I've been surprised to see different breeds of horses do things that I didnt know they could do on here, as well as learning some horses do things I've never heard of.
If theres one thing I do know about horses, its Tennessees.
I think it's time to show these Big Lick guys what a real natural gait looks like.