How To Get Extended Strides - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 11-14-2011, 08:50 AM Thread Starter
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How To Get Extended Strides

I know I've posted once today wanting advice for building suspension, but I'd also like to know what you all do to get extended strides. My horse has a pretty trot when I'm flagging him, but I can't seem to get that same trot while riding.

In addition, I've noticed that when I'm cantering him on his right lead, he seems more uppity on the front end (for lack of better words). How can I get him to stretch and extend his front legs at the canter?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 12 Old 11-14-2011, 03:59 PM
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Try working on pole grids.
With correct spacing you can either shorten or lengthen strides.

Of course this will not do it on it's own, you also need to be asking correctly in your seat and leg aids.

Think about driving him forward from behind right behind the bit so he is on the vertical and using his entire body.
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post #3 of 12 Old 11-14-2011, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nherridge View Post
Try working on pole grids.
With correct spacing you can either shorten or lengthen strides.

Of course this will not do it on it's own, you also need to be asking correctly in your seat and leg aids.

Think about driving him forward from behind right behind the bit so he is on the vertical and using his entire body.
I'm not familiar with pole grids, could you explain? Thanks!
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post #4 of 12 Old 11-17-2011, 08:16 PM
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A pole grid is the same thing as ground poles. You want the space between them to be about 6 feet. I use about three poles. Practice at the trot first until you're really comfortable with them. You should either post, or two point over them. Whichever you prefer. (two point is better for core/leg muscles)
When you do actually canter over them make sure to stay off your horses back, and don't let them jump the poles(:
I'm working on the same exact thing as you, more extension at the canter and trot. IT really works!! It hasn't taken my mare long to get the hang of it either
I wish you the best of luck!!!!

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post #5 of 12 Old 11-17-2011, 08:32 PM
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Once you figured out how to extend the walk, move on to the trot. It all starts at the walk. Sorry I find it difficult to articulate instructions, besides it's better to be shown from the ground, that way it's done correctly. Once you got a full blown lank extended trot, enjoy the airtime!
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post #6 of 12 Old 11-17-2011, 09:39 PM
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As was mentioned on the other thread re suspension ( and the video posted there) this horse is not ready for extensions.


The foundation is not there yet.
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post #7 of 12 Old 11-17-2011, 10:27 PM
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If you can't get engagement and 'sit' behind, all you will be doing in trying to extend a horses paces, is pushing it out of balance and throwing it on the forehand, thus the horse will take bigger steps so as not to fall on it's head. A true extension shows a horse still over it's hind legs, lengthening it's frame and maintaining the same rhythm and tempo throughout.
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post #8 of 12 Old 11-18-2011, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lexiie View Post
A pole grid is the same thing as ground poles. You want the space between them to be about 6 feet. I use about three poles. Practice at the trot first until you're really comfortable with them. You should either post, or two point over them. Whichever you prefer. (two point is better for core/leg muscles)
When you do actually canter over them make sure to stay off your horses back, and don't let them jump the poles(:
I'm working on the same exact thing as you, more extension at the canter and trot. IT really works!! It hasn't taken my mare long to get the hang of it either
I wish you the best of luck!!!!
That kind of sounds dangerous cantering over them, I've ridden a horse before over ground poles (supposed to be at the trot) and he started cantering (they were leading to a jump) and he stepped on one and was sliding all over the place.
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post #9 of 12 Old 11-18-2011, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyder View Post
As was mentioned on the other thread re suspension ( and the video posted there) this horse is not ready for extensions.


The foundation is not there yet.
Yes, he's not ready. But it doesn't mean that I can't get help anyways for the future.

Plus, when I posted about suspension & everyone said he's not ready, I asked what exercises you all could suggest me do with him to build his foundation so that over time he will be ready for suspension and extension. As in, what should I do with him to build foundation and also what should I be looking for when I ride him to be able to tell that he is ready to move on to something else.. But then everyone got busy arguing about whether suspension is natural or not and no one answered my question. :/
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post #10 of 12 Old 11-18-2011, 03:59 PM
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Correct riding leads to a well developed horse. Focus on following the training scale and take lessons from a good Dressage coach. Extension comes only after collection, the highest point on the training scale. You have not yet even mastered the first step, rhythm. You should not be focusing ever on the horse looking pretty, but that he is going correctly.
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