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upsidedown 02-04-2009 01:22 PM

Doesn't Understand Lunging On A Line
Brutus never learned to lunge on a line. He's 12, and is rather confused by the whole idea. He free lunges, but considers a line a long lead rope. Because of this he thinks he's supposed to come towards you. I feel very bad because he's trying very hard to be obedient and do what he's supposed to do when led and gets very confused when you try to make him move. He stares at you as if he's trying to understand what you want or he walks toward you like "Mom this is a long lead!"

I have had someone else hold the line and another person walk next to him and "lead" him since he thinks its a lead anyway. He will walk, trot, and canter with someone next to him but when we thought he finally understood and took the person away he just kept trying to go to the middle. He likes people. A lot.

Its not absolutely necessary that he lunge on a line, I can free lunge him if need be and he doesn't really ever need to be lunged at a show, it'd just be nice to know I could.

Please excuse me if I sound really dumb about this I really don't know the art of teaching a horse to lunge :)

chelssss(: 02-04-2009 01:43 PM

My horse was whipped as a young colt. So whips, lunge lines, everything that deals with that. . . . . dont come near him with it. No ifs, ands or buts. First, with him having bad trust issues, i had to work one-on-one with him. With a simple lead line, just rubbing it all over him. And finally when he got used to having a lunge line, i brought in the lunge whip. not to hit him, i dont believe in that at ALL, but just to carry it behind him. and touch his tail with it. He didnt like it at first. I could see it in his eyes. but i worked with him everyday til he got used to it.
he always comes to me in the center when he stops. Now, with the whip in hand, i have it at his rear, and i keep it there and when he shoulders in, tap him with a whip, or even the line. I had someone walking bay too, and its helped ALOT! now he enjoys everything with the lunge. I bring him out in the hilly field and i lunge him, to get his muscle tone back from the winter feed!

appylover31803 02-04-2009 11:43 PM

oh my gosh! My qh gelding does the same thing. I know he can free lunge, but when I tried to lunge him on a line he was like "What do I do? I'm following you but you keep stopping"
I'm going to keep an eye on this thread to hopefully get some pointers, but like you, its not necessary.

koomy56 02-08-2009 08:17 PM

Basically, what you need to teach your guy is to move his front end out, and then the rest will come into place.
To do this this, put your horse in a basic halter & lead rope. First teach your horse to move his head and neck from left to right. To do this, reach out sideways with your right arm, rope slack. With your left hand, have the tail end of the rope and quietly flag it on the other side to i nfluence him moving away. Once he responds, immediately put down your arms. Do this until you can influence him to sway his head and neck from side to side as you ask. Then you can start to ask him to move his feet. Same concept, but this time you'll twirl the tail of the rope at his shoulder, other arm outstretched until he takes a step to the side with only his front end. DO that both ways until it gets easier.
Then you can start walking into his throat area, twirling the tail end at his shoulder so that he pivots away from you. If he refuses to budge, you can use the end of the rope, or you can stick your hand up to his eye and flick your hand so to speak to get him to move away from it. If he moves forward, immediately back him, then try again. If he steps sideways, then forwards, reward him and allow him to walk on.
If you can get that, then you can practice doing the same thing on a longer rope.
Once he understands that his shoulders are to move out before forwards, you're on your way to teaching him how to lounge.
Remember that your energy should always be directed towards his shoulders and/or entire front end, but not as his hind end. Sending him from his back end will send his hind quarters away from you, which makes him turn and face you. So always send him from his front end.
If he stops and turns into you, be quick to walk into him and push his front end back out onto the circle.
Let me know if that makes sense, or if you need more information. :)

koomy56 02-08-2009 08:21 PM


oh my gosh! My qh gelding does the same thing. I know he can free lunge, but when I tried to lunge him on a line he was like "What do I do? I'm following you but you keep stopping"I'm going to keep an eye on this thread to hopefully get some pointers, but like you, its not necessary.
When you guys want to keep your horses moving, walk a bit with them in a smaller circle so they know to keep moving. Stopping your walking is a good cue to them to slow down. So be sure to make your body language super clear. If you want them to pick up the pace, you can walk faster to more clearly indicate what you're asking. Say you want to teach the canter of the lounge, walk briskly while sending them and the second they make an effort to canter, you stop walking so briskly or stop, as a reward for doing what you asked. :)
When lounging your body language is super important.

upsidedown 02-09-2009 11:32 AM

Thanks so much for your help. :)

I'll try that out.

appylover31803 02-09-2009 05:23 PM

Thanks for the help too!

elliotthorse 02-09-2009 05:41 PM

All good points remember to drive your horse
I agree. I even walk when lunging my horses. It's also good to place yourself slightly behind the shoulder when lunging (this is the driving position) NOT BEHIND your horse where you could get kicked. just slightly behind the shoulder.

Whipple 02-10-2009 04:50 PM

I found this video, and it seems very informative. There's a bunch of them. Plus its the first time for the 4 yo gelding.

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