What is a half halt? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum

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post #11 of 22 Old 04-01-2010, 01:42 PM
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I thought that "check" was the cowboy word for half-halt.
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post #12 of 22 Old 04-01-2010, 02:46 PM
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Quoting Robert Dover "You are always a half halt away from perfection".

A half halt does not make the horse go slower or faster necessarily. It is a re balancing and regrouping of the horse and it encourages him to rock back onto his haunches. A half halt is used as preparation for a movement, and in every corner, and every time the horse loses his balance slightly, including in the extended gaits. To give a half halt requires a sophistication of feel to know just how to tune the circle of aids so that the horse will come out of the other side of it more balanced. It should span about the length of a rider's inhale-exhale.
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post #13 of 22 Old 04-02-2010, 12:04 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for your help. I appreciate your comments.
Rod
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post #14 of 22 Old 04-02-2010, 12:13 AM
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Google Jane Savoie on YouTube and one of her videos is about half halts.

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post #15 of 22 Old 04-02-2010, 12:27 AM
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my way of exaplaining it - you know when you give just that little pull back to tell your horse 'hey, focus, come back a little' that's a half halt. Or when you pick your reins up a little when preparing to go into a higher gait, that's a half halt. There are many other examples but im sure you would get the gist by now ;)

"I whisper but my horse doesnt listen...So I yell!!...He still doesnt listen"


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post #16 of 22 Old 04-02-2010, 12:46 AM
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I thouhgt that you just move the bit in the horses mouth just to slow them down not completley stop
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post #17 of 22 Old 04-02-2010, 02:36 AM
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So many misconceptions of what a half halt is!! A true half halt is what Anebel said, a re-belencing and re-grouping of the horse to prepare for the next movement, which of course requires the horse to be off the forehand and engaging the hind end to get through the next movement.

A bit of a tug on the mouth to slow the horse down is a beginners version of a steady. The half halt is far more complex than a simple tug back on the mouth. It involves all aids, leg, hand and seat used at the appropriate time in the horse's motion to give the horse the best chance of being able to re-balance himself. A true half halt is something a horse must learn, much like you would teach shoulder in or extensions. They do not just 'happen', initially the aids are further apart and occur over a longer time frame to give the horse the idea, so you may ask for the steady with the seat, then rein, and then put the leg on to get the re-balancing over the haunches. Eventually these aids, in the advanced horse, will appear to occur almost simultaneously and this is when the true half halt is coming into effect.

There are so many riders who are under the impression that the half halt is a very simple, tug of the rein and steady, but it is far from it. I'm not sure where the former notion comes from, whether it is from incorrect coaching, pony club or just basic ideas formed in ones own head, but riders need to understand that a half halt is far from a simple tug on the rein and is in fact quite a complicated series of aids used to achieve a specific goal.
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post #18 of 22 Old 04-02-2010, 07:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayty View Post
So many misconceptions of what a half halt is!!

There are so many riders who are under the impression that the half halt is a very simple, tug of the rein and steady, but it is far from it. I'm not sure where the former notion comes from, whether it is from incorrect coaching, pony club or just basic ideas formed in ones own head, but riders need to understand that a half halt is far from a simple tug on the rein and is in fact quite a complicated series of aids used to achieve a specific goal.
^A few weeks ago I volunteered to help out at a "Horsemanship Skills" seminar for my county's 4-H. A couple of other people brought horses and demonstrated the maneuvers that are deemed to fall into "Level 1 and 2" horsemanship skills.The gentleman who was explaining the program asked the volunteer riders for a check and release, and then said that it is the same thing as a half-halt. I about fell out of my chair. Not only was his description of a half-halt completely wrong, but, IMHO, a true half-halt is not a level 1 movement in any sense of that idea.

After seeing and volunteering at several of these seminars, the amount of missing or wrong info doled out on most of the topics covered is astounding.

A stubborn horse walks behind you, an impatient one in front of you, but a noble companion walks beside you ~ Unknown
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post #19 of 22 Old 04-03-2010, 12:02 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by iridehorses View Post

It also seems that your Hanoverian owners were having their moment of "superiority" and were throwing out terms. It's not that you don't do them, you just don't name them.
I won't say anything about moments of "superiority" except to say they have been important clients for my friend. One is a prominent Idaho State government official that has this Hanoverian mare (co-owned with another woman) and a Andalusian Stallion. She has kept one or the other in training with him for the past two years. Plus, she has referred several more clients to him over the past several months.

Anyway, since she was talking about something I didn't know anything about I thought it would be an opportunity to learn something.
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post #20 of 22 Old 04-03-2010, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by NittanyEquestrian View Post
So if you happen to be starting a heavy headed colt in a snaffle then you can say oh yea...I can do that dressage thing with my body and my hands and I can get him off his forehand by pushing his hind end up into my hands. Then you go VOILA! I did dressage =)
Or in my case- I did reining!

Which brings up something I've thought about over the past couple of years. Do you think there would be any direct benefit for reining (me or the horse), if I took some dressage lessons?
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