To lunge or not to lunge... - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 02:44 AM
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Longeing has been an invaluable tool for my mom and I while retraining our spooky/hot warmblood mare. The point wasn't to "tire her out" but to refocus her mind and get her paying attention... sort of priming her for when we get on her and tell her what to do from there. It has helped her start to rebalance herself in a much nicer way of going, and after so many years, she's good at it! She responds almost perfectly to our voice commands, enough so that it is sort of fun to ask her to do certain things and see her go at it.

Some people tend to use longeing as a means of wearing the horse out, but we used it to engage our horse's mind. When done properly, the person longeing should be paying constant attention to the movement and gait of the horse, refining even the pace at which they travel in each gait. It's never a good idea to make a horse go around more than two or three laps in any gait at a time. Transitions transitions transitions are key to keeping them engaged and paying attention to you, waiting for what comes next.
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post #22 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 03:24 AM
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I definitely believe lunging has its place in my training. For me personally, it has always been there to help with my green horses, teach them jumping and then let them jump (I don't jump now but as a kid I loved to haha), work on voice commands, check for their energy levels/any stiffness or sound issues, etc etc. Recently it has become an essential tool for me to reintroduce to both my horses as I broke my leg last year and can barely ride. Spring is on its way here in NZ and I'm already plodding around on one of my horses, but lunging helps her maintain a low level of fitness when I can't ride. It also is curing the boredom in my gelding, who I can't personally ride anymore, and is waiting for better weather so he can be put back under saddle by a friend and sold on. My horses personally enjoy it. And we don't just do circles either - I make a point to walk out wider with them to use all our space, and working on lengthening of stride by making an oval and pushing them on the straights - they love it! I've never found muscle soreness in either of my horses from lunging frequently either. My instructor has cleared me for 3 sessions of no longer than 20mins each week with my horses, albeit with it being winter I've yet to use all three a week. With the ground firming up however, I will and have no issue with the remarks I get from others either. Some people just have to do what they do, and its just a tool I believe in. There are certainly many methods of riding/handling of horses that I don't necessarily believe in myself to be beneficial, but like the OP said, each to their own and only share your opinion if asked.

Great thread, was a good read :)


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post #23 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 08:57 AM
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I ride at a mainly hunter barn with a few jumpers, and everyone who has their own horse lunges once in a while.....not everyday and not lunged to death, but its normally done for training purposes.
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post #24 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 08:59 AM
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I lunge Demi every time I ride. Anyone who thinks they can get on her without it is insane! She's naturally cold backed... even in the summer months and if you lunge her she's fine.

So I don't find anything wrong with it as a training tool.

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post #25 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by eventerdrew View Post
I lunge Demi every time I ride. Anyone who thinks they can get on her without it is insane! She's naturally cold backed... even in the summer months and if you lunge her she's fine.

So I don't find anything wrong with it as a training tool.
I had a mare who was cold backed and I too either lunged first or put up with an unpleasant first 10mins until she was warm through her back. I completely agree, its not only beneficial if you dont want to be jostled around, but it allowed April to truly stretch her back and muscles without me on her back, which made for a lovely ride immediately :)


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post #26 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 10:16 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohmyitschelle View Post
With the ground firming up however, I will and have no issue with the remarks I get from others either. Some people just have to do what they do, and its just a tool I believe in. There are certainly many methods of riding/handling of horses that I don't necessarily believe in myself to be beneficial, but like the OP said, each to their own and only share your opinion if asked.

Great thread, was a good read :)
So sorry to hear about your injury

After being at a boarding barn for so long with all different disciplines and gaining some appreciation for all types of training tools, I have learned to keep my opinions to myself unless they ask me. I posted the original thread because I thought I had missed something in the eight years that I had been away from the hunter world. I really appreciate all the feedback I received and I feel a little less embarassed for having my lunge line in my tack box. I know that I don't abuse it by sending her round and round just to tire her out. I think probably the heart of the misconception of the lunge line in the horse world is that it is used just to tire horses out so they are rideable, but as this post's responses have shown, that is generally not the case. What is abused by some gives it a bad name to most, which is a shame.

Thanks again
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post #27 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 10:54 AM
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Originally Posted by MissPhoebe View Post
So sorry to hear about your injury

After being at a boarding barn for so long with all different disciplines and gaining some appreciation for all types of training tools, I have learned to keep my opinions to myself unless they ask me. I posted the original thread because I thought I had missed something in the eight years that I had been away from the hunter world. I really appreciate all the feedback I received and I feel a little less embarassed for having my lunge line in my tack box. I know that I don't abuse it by sending her round and round just to tire her out. I think probably the heart of the misconception of the lunge line in the horse world is that it is used just to tire horses out so they are rideable, but as this post's responses have shown, that is generally not the case. What is abused by some gives it a bad name to most, which is a shame.

Thanks again
Unfortunately, there are a lot of gadgets and tools out there that get a bad rep, simply because they fall into impatient or inexperienced hands. I wouldn't feel embarrassed, what helps you and your horse safely and efficiently is a great tool to have! I started using a grackle on my gelding before the current hype of grackle nosebands started to flare up, because he twists at the jaw and zones out, so my instructor recommended it. I got a lot of comments on another forum because I'm a wannabe dressage rider, about how incorrect this was and that it was simply down to me taking a short cut in his training, and not listening to what he was telling me. Then again some of these people were also against the flash noseband too, so ya couldn't win. Us riders all end up wearing a bad name here and there for the things we use, but Evo is a completely different, more comfortable ride and is happy - so who cares about the negative opinions we get in response!

Happy lunging ^_^


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post #28 of 28 Old 08-28-2010, 10:18 PM
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I think sometiems comments like in the OP are what give horse people the reputaion of snobbery! Sometimes I think people do something because that's what you do or don't do something because someone told them it was bad and they don't really understand the whys and hows.

Longing is a tool in my tool box I pull out when I need it. I do it for many reasons and people have listed them in this thread.

I suppose the only thing one could get more ridicule for is longing a gaited horse, but I do that too, so there you go!
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