Lunging problem.

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Lunging problem.

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  • 1 Post By Stephie

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    10-16-2011, 09:47 PM
Lunging problem.

Hey, I have been clicker training my 1.5 year old horse and I feel he is ready to learn how to lunge. My problem is that he will not move away from me when I ask him to. I have a round pen in which to lunge him. Any advice on what I can do to get him to lunge is greatly appreciated!
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    10-16-2011, 10:18 PM
Will he depart in the round pen when you are working him off the lead rope? You should be able to raise your arm and point, cluck, if he does not depart use your stick and string or whatever you have and encourage him to depart. Look at his shoulder to get him to move away, not his hip. When lunging him, point high with your arm, cluck, then if he does not depart, tap him on his neck until the departs. Try that.
    10-16-2011, 10:23 PM
When you say he won't move away, it sounds like he isn't respecting your space. Will he back up with little resistance on the lead? Move his hindquarters away, etc?
Don't 'manhandle' him, but if you're saying "Hey, I want you move." He needs to move.

If he completely ignores you, increase the pressure with the lunge whip/rope until he listens, then release. If he still doesn't listen, tap him. You may, if he's extremely ignoring you, hit him with the lunge whip.

Nobody likes to hit their horse. And you shouldn't unless it's a last resort.
But if he's ignoring you completely, at that point, he's saying "Screw you mom, you aren't getting my feet to move." And THAT does not make for a respectful horse.
    10-16-2011, 10:31 PM
He'll back away from me on voice command alone or with slight pressure on the lead. I've tried tapping his hind end with a whip but he still won't move away. I think it's more a problem with him not knowing what I am asking him to do.
    10-16-2011, 10:46 PM
Ah, I see. I just overcame the same problem with my boy. I'd worked with many horses before, but none like Eli - he'd be the most respectful horse ever on the lead but wouldn't lunge properly for the life of him. Finally, we did it.

What works best for me - make sure you're standing and staring behind his shoulders, not in front, but not too much at his hindquarters, either, or he may take that as "yielding hindquarters" and turn in toward you.

Use as little pressure as possible, but as much as necessary. Point where you want him to go while clicking, then wave your whip, then tap him, then spank the ground, and keep adding pressure until he responds.

Try not to add the pressure constantly.
Make sure when he moves away properly, that you release the pressure right away and thus teach him that moving away from that pressure is the proper thing to do.

I wish you the best of luck! (:
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    10-16-2011, 11:30 PM
A horse this young shouldn't do very much lunging , IMO. But , teaching him to step away from you, back away from you, move his shoulder away from you; these are all good skills to have. They can be done step by step, little by little.

In lunging, a lot of people have trouble getting the hrose to NOT face them, so they can get them to move forward. I think I wrote a prett long and fairly good (if I do say so myself) response to that question here:

lunging issues

I also made a short video about this, though it is a very poorly made video and might not be so great for a real young horse who doesn't already know how to follow the feel of a leadline. Here it is:

How to get your horse away from you so you can begin lunging him around a circle
    10-17-2011, 12:09 AM
Originally Posted by tinyliny    
A horse this young shouldn't do very much lunging , IMO. But , teaching him to step away from you, back away from you, move his shoulder away from you; these are all good skills to have. They can be done step by step, little by little.
Yeah, I wasn't planning on doing any serious lunging, just enough so that when he is old enough he'll know what to do :)

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