Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: New South Wales, Australia
In my experience parelli people think lunging their horses is bad. Parelli appears to be quite against lunging, and instead does "lateral lunging". The basic form of this is a small circle with a 12ft lead rope. The horse in encouraged to only go a few laps and then is called in. They do a bit more on a longer rope but its more a few laps, then sideways, come in, change direction sort of thing rather than the more traditional lunging.
Traditional lunging is often used to warm a horse up, or work them, where as Parelli is about control at a distance, and its constantly changing to keep the horse interested. Maybe your horse doesn't quite understand traditional lunging? Maybe she is just getting super bored, which isn't an excuse but its good to know where she is coming from.
I'd go back to basics with a long parelli style leadrope. I'd ask her to move out and if the doesn't work do the whole spinning the rope and walking towards her hind end. Tap her on the hindquarters until she moves forward and then let her circle for a one or two laps and bring her in. Practice it until she understands your cue for go out, then she should be good on the lunge.
I was always taught that its best not to call horses in for traditional lunging. Not only can the rope get in the way, but the horse can spook and run you over, get the rope wrapped around you, or just consistently try to "cut in" to finish the session. I've trained my horse to halt on the circle and stand until I come and get him. That way for direction change or anything he doesn't get confused or tangled up.
Horses can get really nippy with treats. I wanted to encourage my horse to come so when I brought him to the gate I would give him one treat - that was all. After about a week he was constantly searching for treats in my hands, even when I was trying to work him. Some horses are fine with the occasional or regular treat, but others do start to look for them, and in that case it is often best not to hand feed them.
Also remember with the whole Parelli thing, they don't use whips so your horse might not be used to it.
I don't know much about Parelli, I just read the book (Natural Horse-man-ship I think its called) and these are my understandings. Good luck.