Originally Posted by wchapman4
so your saying he will gait but it will be slow. Will he speed up once he gets older and a few trail miles on him. When I break him do I just keep him in the gait and he should get faster?
Within limits, yes.
All gaited horses have a range of speed where they can maintain a proper form for their gait. If you exceed that range they will lose form and move to a different gait. This new gait may be less comfortable for horse and/or rider. At the extreme they will either trot or pace.
One of the
most common errors with gaited horses is going too fast. Then complaining that the ride was "rough" and then start messing with stuff (tack, hoof angles, shoes, devices, etc.) to "smooth out" the gait. When all they really need to do is slow down.
A horse ridden regularly will be stronger and fitter and better able to handle a modestly larger range of speed. For most gaited horses the gait is done for distance, not speed. There are a few "speed" gaits (the flying tolt, speed rack, etc.) but in the main if you want to go faster then use an easy canter. It will, in almost all cases, be more energy efficient for the horse.