Training with out a round pen is it possible? - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 11:00 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 10
• Horses: 0
Training with out a round pen is it possible?

I have a three year old arabian mare. I am teachin to lunge, very basic walk and trot, voice commands ect. She will not lunge to the left. I dont have a round pen yet and when I try to turn her and go the other direction she backs up like crazy making it impossible to get her to go to the left. It's annoying!
You can't force a 1200 lb animal to do any thing so I realize this is a mind game! She has very little training and only have lunged her three times. I did not want to keep lunging with only going one direction.
Help I'm stumped. Any Ideas are appreciated.
dawnhoadley is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 11:12 AM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 5,995
• Horses: 0
Round pens are not necessary to train a horse.

Round pens are for people and not for horses.

There is nothing you need a round pen for. Generally speaking, the more knowledgeable and able bodied the horseman is, they less he/she depends on a round pen. I did not even have one for the first 25 or 30 years that I trained horses full-time. I would not be able to do much without one now because I am pretty crippled by degenerative joint disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis. I have one for ME.
Cherie is offline  
post #3 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 11:32 AM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Iowa Park, TX
Posts: 1,283
• Horses: 4
My 4 yr old QH is the same way, but opposite ways, she does wonderfull to the left, goes crazy to the right.... I really need to spend more time doing ground work, but life keeps getting in the way. When I first got her, after some ground work, and started riding her, she turns wonderfully to the left, but would not turn to the right, she would panic if I even brought my hand up to the right, she's over that part now, but I'm sure it came from the previous owner where she was abused.
Good luck!
nuisance is offline  
post #4 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 11:37 AM
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: MN
Posts: 5,464
• Horses: 3
Originally Posted by dawnhoadley View Post
I have a three year old arabian mare.

You can't force a 1200 lb animal to do any thing so I realize this is a mind game!
You have a 1200 pound 3 year old Arabain mare? Wow.
mls is offline  
post #5 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 11:45 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Southwest Missouri
Posts: 924
• Horses: 1
I agree most whole heartedly that a roundpen is not required for teaching a horse the verbal and body language training on the circle in-hand of a lunge line in an open space without the barriers of a fenced round pen. I can testify to this with my own experience of my horse. I did eventually get a 60ft round pen, but not after I spent many hours of lunging with only a lunge line and an open space with no barriers.
candandy49 is offline  
post #6 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 10
• Horses: 0
That was more of a exaggeration on the weight! All I know is that she is a large strong animal that your not going to force to do anything!
I have no idea what she weighs :)
dawnhoadley is offline  
post #7 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 12:17 PM
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 6,051
• Horses: 0
You need to keep backing up with her and push her from behind. Do not send her until you are at her hip. Keep your left arm pointing her in teh direction and use the lunge whip to push her that direction. If you are in front she won't go forward. This should just take a few times and you should be able to work through it.
churumbeque is offline  
post #8 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 12:19 PM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: wisconsin
Posts: 5,695
• Horses: 3
when my mare had trouble lunging to one direction, i would lunge her w/t/c on her good side, then lead her from the bad side. when i was walking her i would keep walking, but turn to face her so she was 'lunging' just in a very small circle, after a few rounds giving her more and more rope. just keep the circle small and slow until she gets the hang of it.

Gypsy & Scout <3
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. ~Albert Einstein
gypsygirl is offline  
post #9 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 01:34 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 5,286
• Horses: 1
Make sure you re-evaluate what you're doing- are you standing too far forward and "blocking" the horse's forward motion?

We have a dominant side as well, and though you might lunge properly from one side, you might unknowingly be giving confusing signals going the other way. It's doubly hard to get the correct response if your weaker side is also your horse's weaker side.
verona1016 is offline  
post #10 of 15 Old 09-29-2011, 02:15 PM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Canada
Posts: 19
• Horses: 0
You definitely don't need a round pen. I actually find them somewhat restrictive, unless I'm doing liberty work--in which case you need at least some kind of fencing.

I ran into a problem getting my horse to circle to the right this year. I don't work on a lunge line, just a 12-foot lead (on occasion, a 22-ft). Her right side has always been her tougher side, but late this summer, she started backing and turning when I asked her to circle to the right. There were a few issues at play, but most importantly, we determined that she'd developed a mental block with going to the right because that's the side her saddle had started pinching on. She began to associate going to the right with pain in her shoulder. (I have since bought her a new saddle that fits perfectly, and we will likely have to spend some time working some bad habits out. Unfortunately, I live 6 hours away from my horse so probably won't see her again for a few weeks!)

Anyway, I have managed to get her circling to the right again with more ease, though there is still some work to do. Here's what we did:

1. To the left, I simply have to stand parallel with her at the drive line, and then just send her on with my body language--pointing with my left arm, and looking where I want her to go, not at her.

2. When I wanted her to go to the right, it was a struggle just for me to get to her right side. She wanted to back and turn so I couldn't get to that side at all.

3. I worked at putting her to work whenever she wouldn't stand for me to go to her right side. When I could finally stand in close to the drive line on her right side, I would allow her to rest, and rubbed her everywhere to put her at ease.

4. When I could get to the right side without a battle, and could stand in close while she relaxed, we started to work on forward motion. I would send her out with my right arm (pointing the direction I wanted her to go), just like when we circle to the left, BUT...I would stay RIGHT beside her, touching her body at the drive line, and walk forward with her, in an arc. This kept me close enough that she couldn't back away from me or turn--I could go with her wherever she went--and helped her understand what I was asking--I wanted forward motion.

5. Each time I did this, the forward motion became easier, until I could step back from her, and begin to circle her from more of a distance. If she would revert to wanting to back and turn, I'd go back to walking in close beside her until we worked it out again.

6. When I could get her circling at a distance, I started *small.* If she gave me even a quarter of a good circle with forward motion, to the right, on an arc, I'd ask her in and let her rest. I'd then work on increasing the circle size.

When I last saw her, we'd progressed to where I could ask her for a right circle from a few feet away from her, saddled or unsaddled, and she would respond without problem. When I see her again in a few weeks (at the time I'd been home for 3 weeks and had been working with her regularly), I'll likely start in close to her, so we can start on a positive note, and work the distance out quickly if she's responding well.

Patience, and quality will get you everywhere. Good luck!

P.S. It's also a very good idea to get your horse checked by a chiropractor and/or massage therapist. It's not impossible that there's some physical discomfort influencing your horse's behavior as well.

Last edited by Fancy14; 09-29-2011 at 02:20 PM.
Fancy14 is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Training tip / Poor Man's Round Pen ibedoc Horse Training 37 03-14-2011 03:16 AM
training without a round pen huntergrl Horse Training 5 06-27-2009 11:49 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome