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Why is Monty Roberts against lunging?

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  • How to lunge your horse correctly monty roberts
  • Monty roberts how to lunge your horse

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    08-19-2012, 09:31 AM
  #11
Trained
I am not a big fan of lunging either. Past the horse knowing how to lunge and using it for a few things when I first start then. Once they are going well under saddle I do not lunge any more. My one mare has not been lunged in so long she will do one time around stop and look at me like why are we doing this pointless running?

While there are times that lunging can come in handy on a regulare bases I do not find it all that useful.
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    08-19-2012, 10:51 AM
  #12
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by nrhareiner    
I am not a big fan of lunging either. Past the horse knowing how to lunge and using it for a few things when I first start then. Once they are going well under saddle I do not lunge any more. My one mare has not been lunged in so long she will do one time around stop and look at me like why are we doing this pointless running?

While there are times that lunging can come in handy on a regulare bases I do not find it all that useful.
My thoughts, as well. This is one of my big qualms with Pony Club. They put such an emphasis on lunging to tire, lunging to train, etc, and I just don't see the point. I would much rather train my horse under saddle and be able to ride him when he's fresh without having to run him around first. The ONLY times when lunging is useful to me are A) When I'm trying out a new horse, or B) When I don't have someone there to trot a horse I feel might be off or lame. In this case, I put the horse in the round pen and ask for a few trips around at a walk and trot.

My other qualm with Pony Club (a bit off topic, I know) is that they teach that the horse MUST NOT stop and face you when you ask for the halt. I have always been taught that the horse should turn towards you, but PC really got at me when my horse did this during a lunging lesson. They made me spend thirty minutes undoing this "vice" by making him stand on the circle when he stopped.
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    08-19-2012, 11:11 AM
  #13
Foal
I DO NOT like to lunge for the purpose of tiring a horse out, but it does have its purpose I believe. I like to lunge for at the most 5 min and that's usually always at a trot. I believe it gets the horse to focus on me and I can judge their attitude/disposition that day. I don't like to just go around and around and around. I do lots of changes of direction to keep the horse focused and listening for my next move. I also like to lunge for a bit when I take a horse to a new place and they might be a little nervous. Once I lunge, they usually settle down, they know the routine.
I think it has a purpose, but that purpose is not to tire the horse to a point that it only wants to walk.
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    08-19-2012, 11:46 AM
  #14
Foal
Longeing is a skill that sadly is misconstrued I think. The point is not to chase a horse round and round to wear it out, but rather to educate the horse--to the voice, learning transitions (within a gait too). I freelonge in the roundpen and horses quickly become very focused and obedient. I teach young kids and the horses are steady so they can learn the basics properly. I also do not let the horse turn in to me when I ask for halt (what is the point of that?). I go to them, stroke their their head, than proceed on. I very quickly get what some call "join up" in that when the session is over, I ask them to follow me, both directions, (no leadline). Correct positioning and clear body language is important.
     
    08-19-2012, 12:16 PM
  #15
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by equiniphile    
My thoughts, as well. This is one of my big qualms with Pony Club. They put such an emphasis on lunging to tire, lunging to train, etc, and I just don't see the point. I would much rather train my horse under saddle and be able to ride him when he's fresh without having to run him around first. The ONLY times when lunging is useful to me are A) When I'm trying out a new horse, or B) When I don't have someone there to trot a horse I feel might be off or lame. In this case, I put the horse in the round pen and ask for a few trips around at a walk and trot.

Ya I want control of my horses mind. Lungeing to tire them out is not contorling the horses mind.

My other qualm with Pony Club (a bit off topic, I know) is that they teach that the horse MUST NOT stop and face you when you ask for the halt. I have always been taught that the horse should turn towards you, but PC really got at me when my horse did this during a lunging lesson. They made me spend thirty minutes undoing this "vice" by making him stand on the circle when he stopped.
This would be my come back to that. I do not want my horse to turn to face me when I ask for the whoa in a lunge line b/c I do not want them to turn when I ask them to stop when I am on their back. This teaches a horse to stop crucket and that is the last thing I want. You train for what you want the horse to do next.

Like when I train the stop I am actually training the back up. When I am training a spin I am training a forward motion. So when I stop I automatically back. When I spin I automatically push the horse foward. You always train for what you want the horse to do next. So if you ask for the stop on the line you actually want them to back not turn into you as that is what you are training is not the stop but the turn and that is not what I want the horse to do.
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    08-19-2012, 03:01 PM
  #16
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by nrhareiner    
This would be my come back to that. I do not want my horse to turn to face me when I ask for the whoa in a lunge line b/c I do not want them to turn when I ask them to stop when I am on their back. This teaches a horse to stop crucket and that is the last thing I want. You train for what you want the horse to do next.

Like when I train the stop I am actually training the back up. When I am training a spin I am training a forward motion. So when I stop I automatically back. When I spin I automatically push the horse foward. You always train for what you want the horse to do next. So if you ask for the stop on the line you actually want them to back not turn into you as that is what you are training is not the stop but the turn and that is not what I want the horse to do.
This is an angle I haven't thought of, and it does make sense. I wonder, why do so many trainers advocate stopping and looking at you then?
     
    08-19-2012, 03:12 PM
  #17
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by nrhareiner    
This would be my come back to that. I do not want my horse to turn to face me when I ask for the whoa in a lunge line b/c I do not want them to turn when I ask them to stop when I am on their back. This teaches a horse to stop crucket and that is the last thing I want. You train for what you want the horse to do next.
Exactly this. This is the monster I've been battling out of Sky for a year now. We finally get somewhere and then someone lets him get away with the "turn and look adorable" move and it becomes a huge problem again.

GRRRRR.

Now my little rant: If you're going to lunge, do it properly ALL the way to the end. Less is more, but quality factors in! Less done WELL is better than lots done poorly. Every time!

I lunge but I also do groundwork and I also hang out with my horse and I also ride. These activities are done in a balanced fashion. One thing cannot outweigh the others for us or it becomes mundane. Too much riding working too hard (for us) and too much downtime and we aren't working enough.

But it depends HOW you lunge. In small areas, definitely keep sessions shorter due to stress on joints. In large areas, be sure you can effectively communicate with your horse or they'll be running about headless.
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    08-20-2012, 03:42 AM
  #18
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by equiniphile    
This is an angle I haven't thought of, and it does make sense. I wonder, why do so many trainers advocate stopping and looking at you then?
Its really a trained response and you as the trainer can choose what behaviour you will reward. Personally I reward them for staying out on the edge and waiting for me to come to them so I can practice transitions etc which are responses I want the horses to perform for when I am teaching the kids.

Personally I find any kind of standing in the middle with the horse going round me whether free or on a line pretty dull and I only do enough to train the responses I want or when giving lessons.

I completely agree it shouldn't be used to tire the horse out - problems related to excess energy are still caused by training deficits and these should be fixed rather than using lunging as a band aid.
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    08-20-2012, 05:56 PM
  #19
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by nrhareiner    
This would be my come back to that. I do not want my horse to turn to face me when I ask for the whoa in a lunge line b/c I do not want them to turn when I ask them to stop when I am on their back. This teaches a horse to stop crucket and that is the last thing I want. You train for what you want the horse to do next.

Like when I train the stop I am actually training the back up. When I am training a spin I am training a forward motion. So when I stop I automatically back. When I spin I automatically push the horse foward. You always train for what you want the horse to do next. So if you ask for the stop on the line you actually want them to back not turn into you as that is what you are training is not the stop but the turn and that is not what I want the horse to do.
I agree with this. I use lunging for two reasons. 1- check the horses movement and overall condition (stiffness, lameness etc.) and to tune him in mentally. There fore I don't do a lot of mindless circles, but rather half circles, 1/4 circles changing directions a lot , gait transitions and so forth, just enough to get the horses mind. I would rather "get the fresh off" under saddle because that is easier to do flexing exercises and direction changes to gain respect like I just done on the ground. If he tries turning and facing me when I say whoa, on the circle, I will start out turning him in to me THEN saying whoa and backing him up a few steps. Then I will let him stand for a few seconds, then I walk up to him and give him a rub, waiting a little longer before walking up to him as he gets more and more solid at waiting for me. This does a good job teaching the horse patience that can be used for teaching ground tying, and teaching him to pay attention to me and wait for my direction. It also teaches him to listen FOR the "whoa" cue, as well as TO the "whoa" cue.I don't make a habit of "drawing "the horse to me off the circle, because that has the opposite effect by teaching him to anticipate instead of waiting which does more harm than good.
     
    08-20-2012, 09:54 PM
  #20
Weanling
If your horse isn't bright enough to know the difference between facing up after a stop on the lunge line, and not turning when you ask for a stop when riding, I have to say you are doing something way wrong.

My horses know the difference and I'm certainly NOT a pro trainer...
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