English Instructor wants to know a few western tips please!!

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English Instructor wants to know a few western tips please!!

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    03-15-2011, 07:53 PM
Thumbs up English Instructor wants to know a few western tips please!!

Hello fellow horse lovers!!

I work at a stable that is the home to both English and Western enthusiasts. While I teach the English lessons, my partner, who covers the Western lessons has landed in the Hospital! I've ridden western a few times, here and there throughout the past decade. I know how to put on Western tack. I am familiar with neck reining, and that the western gaits are similar, but have different names, and are slower (I've heard "broken gaits", but I don't like the way that sounds.) I suppose I was wondering if you all had a few tips for me! The students I'm covering are all beginners, and starting with two reins. Any advice or tips are greatly appreciated. Thanks so much. Happy trails!!

I'm just covering these lessons temporarily for my friend. I am NOT saying I am a Western professional, or plan to be one! I just love this forum and figured I would ask you all for some help.
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    03-15-2011, 08:17 PM
The gaits are
Lope (same as a canter)

The only time I know of slowing down gaits would be for Western Pleasure and they become ridiculously slow and begin to look awkward. WP is the only western discipline I don't like much.

I'm not really sure how else to explain things unless directly asked, so I'll leave it up to Smrobs or NHRAreiner or someone similar. Haha.
    03-15-2011, 08:21 PM
I thought in western they called the trot a jog...am I misinformed? I am so glad her students are beginners, otherwise, I would outsource for a REAL western trainer! I'm just going to focus on helping their balance, seat, and confidence :)
    03-15-2011, 08:24 PM
Dressage lady,

Do you teach hunt seat or dressage? I think, now just me thinkin', that you should give these western riders some dressage lessons. It would benefit them SOO much and I bet they'd just love it! They even have Western dressage competitions, or so I've heard. Since they are still riding direct rein, then it's perfect! Work on good transitions, shoulder in, getting a good tracking up at the trot, good backing up. Teach them how to post, just so they will know it.
You could even have them work toward a cute little "western dressage" show at your barn. It would be a hoot!

Whaddaya think?
    03-15-2011, 08:29 PM

I LOVE your idea, however, the students I am covering for the western teacher are BEGINNER beginner. I don't think they're trotting (or jogging) yet! HOWEVER, I love your idea SO much, I am going to try to incorporate it into my Spring Camp! I'm thinking a sort of switch-a-roo day...all the English riders get a Western lesson and vice versa!! Thanks so much for your input, I really appreciate your educated and creative solution!!
    03-15-2011, 08:32 PM
Oh and I teach hunt seat to my students, because I am still training myself and my horse in dressage (you never stop learning!)I think that is why I love dressage so much. Most of my students are beginners, the most experienced just now jumping 2ft. This summer will mark my 20th year in the saddle!
    03-15-2011, 08:32 PM
There was a discussion of "western dressage" in another thread. It's pretty much dressage with a western saddle thrown in. I don't really agree with it. IMO, it'd be like reining with a dressage saddle.

I am also pretty sure shoulder in contradicts Western. Western uses leg pressure to basically push the horse away from the pressure. I could be wrong with the purpose of shoulder in, but that's my understanding of it.

Also, I post. Just because I was taught to. More because I was taught by a friend and it was easier to explain posting and figure that out rather than sitting at a trot. I have been working on that myself though. I've also ridden some choppy horses where it was easier to post rather than sit on a jackhammer.
    03-15-2011, 08:39 PM
Also, what I mean by "pushing away" with pressure is that western horses are trained to move away from pressure like with neck reining, not bend around it.
    03-15-2011, 08:46 PM
Actually, for Western the gaits are usually called "jog" and "lope".
    03-15-2011, 08:54 PM
Dressage lady

You being a beginner in dressage makes it all the better for you to teach beginners. YOu teach them what you are working on.

As for Shoulder in being counter to western. Really? Really?
I find that hard to believe. And I guarantee you I could ride any lowlevel dressage test in my western saddle and do as well as in a dressage saddle.

Shoulder in is fundamentally about having the horse reach under and across himself with his rear leg. It builds on teaching engagement.
But it may be over the heads of the beginners. Just working on seat, does'nt matter what discipline you come from. Sit WITH the horse, sit up straight, head up , heels down and quiet hands. That alone could take a year easily.

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