Round penning techniques? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 03-31-2012, 12:52 PM Thread Starter
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Round penning techniques?

Last year we built a 50' round pen and I've hardly used it because I'm not exactly sure what to do when I bring the horse in. Pretty much the only thing I've done is free lunge. Even when I lunge, I can't get him to turn in to change direction, he always turns when his but facing me. I don't usually work with a lunge whip because he has shown a lot of fear towards it, but I'm thinking I'm going to work on desensitizing him to it. The first time I tried he reared up so I decided to hold off on using it until he trusts me more.

So does anyone have any advice on how to best use a round pen and how to teach them to change direction the correct way? Or any other things I should teach in the round pen.
Videos would be great also as I've a very visual person and sometimes have trouble understand how to use what I'm reading lol
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post #2 of 4 Old 03-31-2012, 01:55 PM
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I have a hard time finding videos of round penning (on Youtube) that I think are good ones.
But, for having the horse turn toward you, you must learn to "draw" the horse. People spend so much time driving the horse in the round pen that they forget to use a draw to bring the horse back to them. You will want to practice making the horse move his feet away from you, and at various speeds, and haveing the horse stop and turn back to face you, and if you invite him, come walking toward you.

When he stops and turns toward you, back away a couple of steps to "draw" himtoward you. Then, the tricky part is to be able to have him turn enough to offer you the other side of his body,(even if it's only his cheek) so that you can then push that side away and out onto the ring. that's the change of direction to the inside. And yes, a video would be best.

But you can at least do some work both driving him and drawing him.
And don't wear him out to round pen play. It's all good and well to do it if there's an issue, or to "play" now and then, but it can be stressful and can sour the horse if you do it a lot.
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post #3 of 4 Old 03-31-2012, 02:29 PM
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Both the inside and outside turn are acceptable....its about preference......Its always easier to start with the outside turn.....butt swings toward you and the shoulder goes along the wall.

When asking for the inside turn should comes off the wall and the butt swings towards the need to stop your horse....then draw the outside shoulder off the wall.........if you have already taught your horse to face you at 12 oclock then that is half the need to then continue to move that shoulder ask for 2 oclock ....then its about pushing the horse forward and back to the wall so they are now going in the opposite direction.....its about moving and blocking in little steps......reward each step along the way so he knows he is doing what you are asking of him....even if he doesn't have the big picture yet.

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post #4 of 4 Old 04-01-2012, 01:55 PM
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Clinton has the best videos for that. Invest.
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