Is this the norm in western pleasure? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:06 PM Thread Starter
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Is this the norm in western pleasure?

So I don't watch western pleasure much at all. I'm more of an English person. I went to an open show this past weekend and got there while western pleasure was warming up. It's an open fun show so of course a lot of people are avid trail riders looking to have a bit of showing fun. Then there are people who do compete higher and are showing in the open fun show for practice. I saw quite a few of the more serious western pleasure competitions pulling their horses into completely false frames. The people who were there for fun were just riding and their horses were actually really collected and relaxed but still could move out. Anyways what some of the people were doing hurt me to watch. They would sit there and yank on their horses bits every time the horses head came up even a little. And by yank I mean hard with the entire hand. They stopped yanking when their horses heads were behind the vertical. Most of the horses had their mouths open of course. But man that yanking made MY mouth hurt! But I noticed it was mostly the more serious western pleasure people doing it. Is that really a major method in western pleasure training?? I sure hope not. It was painful to watch. And one of the girls was teaching a child to do it to her sweet horse too. She had her really pulling on the bit. And these bits had pretty big shanks O_o
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post #2 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:12 PM
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of the shows I have seen, yes its normal. The show circuit has ruined the quarter horse breed in my opinion, and produces non-functional horses. Peanut pushers is a term used alot.
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post #3 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:16 PM
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I am sure there are a lot of ways to train a horse to have a western pleasure headset and most WP horses already carry their heads fairly low naturally. But yes, I have seen this method of getting a horse "into frame" from multiple WP riders/trainers.
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post #4 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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So sad! And some people were pretty young and doing it! It's getting passed down :(. I don't like how the horses barely move either. :p
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post #5 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:22 PM Thread Starter
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How did that method come to be? Why is it more prominent than a gentler way? I don't understand people
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post #6 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:27 PM
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I guess it depends on what your opinion of hard is...?

Both my reining trainers ask their horses to give to bit pressure by "bumping" the bit. It isn't any more pressure then I would normally apply (if I were going to apply steady pressure), but it more a quick/sharp action.
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post #7 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
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Like enough pressure to pull the horses head in. Yeah they were sharp and quick but it looked very hard and caused a false frame. Nothing more than a headset
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post #8 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 02:31 PM
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There was a WP trainer at our old barn who moved in not too long before we left. They were doing that with their horses and it hurt the rest of us to watch, but I'm honestly not sure that she even realized what that actually does to a horse's mouth. :( They seemed to love their horses so much too, really a shame but I've seen worse handling as well. I'll ride my horse in WP open shows for practice but I refuse to train him to be useless in order to win. I want a horse that I can enjoy and with his true gaits.
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post #9 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 03:30 PM Thread Starter
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I know just like halter horses. They've just made them unnatural
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post #10 of 116 Old 01-07-2014, 03:55 PM
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Fun shows draw a lot of "imitation crab". Usually local trainers who do not have a lot of education, "copying" what they see the big trainers doing, on horses who are not built to do it. They make the rest of us western pleasure people look bad.


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