Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: North Dakota, USA
That is a touchy subject, like when should you start riding a horse. It depends on the horse, size of round pen you are using or length of rope/line you are using. Small and tight circles are hard on their joints as they are growing. Larger circles are better along with them walking instead of running. You can do damage to their joints by having them turn too sharp and often.
Now, as far as age goes, it depends on how well they are mentally and how well their attention span is. The younger they are the shorter their attention span.
I've only worked with a few youngsters under two so far, we have one due shortly. Once they are halter broke, I get them to learn how to yield their front and rear ends, how to be sent away like you would to start lunging and to stop. Other than that and getting accustomed to being touched everywhere and lifting their feet, I don't do much until they are 2. Then I start their more thorough training on the ground to prepare them to be saddled and rode. If I had a good sized round pen, I might start free lunging them around a year to 1 1/2.
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