I was reading a thread recently and someone mentioned that cantering on the lunge line is bad. I can see the theory and argument for it being hard on legs due to the constant circle, particularly tight circles. Is there another issue or is it just leg concern? I have one gelding who was taught to canter by being a small (think 10 ft lead rope) and chased in a circle with a lunge whip. Not a method I approve of as its actually resulted in a whole host of problems ranging from being difficult to control on the lunge, to being terrified of the lunge whip. I have a young horse that I am doing the finishing work on. His primary saddle breaking was done by the same trainer as the previous gelding. The trainer told me he was taught to canter but it was not until a few weeks ago that he became muscled enough to offer the canter. I don't know how he was introduced.
I want to encourage the canter on him. I have been working with him on a lunge line. I have been working at a trot and walk, he has sometimes offered a canter and I have very rarely asked for a canter. When I ask him for a canter under saddle he leans in toward the center of the circle. Is this the result of the lunge line? Is it better to ask him to canter under saddle on a circle? At this time, I would not be planning on working on a serious canter until the fall at the absolute earliest. He is still wrapping his head around the trot and I want that 100% before we move up in pace. I don't want his future person to find the training holes that I found with him or the other gelding. This gelding is 4 and the other is 13 years of age. Both of them are harness track flunkies. I just wonder when I do start to work on it is it best to work on it under-saddle on a circle or on a straight away (trail situation for me)?