How do you warm up?

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How do you warm up?

This is a discussion on How do you warm up? within the Western Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • How to warm up a western horse
  • How to warm a horse up before riding

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    07-28-2013, 08:30 PM
How do you warm up?

Hey so I am just curious as to how you all warm up your horses- I have a few things we do, lunging for a few minutes, walk a few laps then trot a few laps once I'm on trig, but I know some people like one lady I board with has an intense warm up for her horse! So I was curious- barrel racers what warm ups do you do? Ropers how do you warm up?
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    07-28-2013, 09:20 PM
I don't lunge, I do lots of bending, flexing, 2 tracking, and some long trotting, shoulders in & out on the diagonal. Pretty much get my horse all bendy and pliable.
    07-28-2013, 09:24 PM
I used to lunge, but I find it's become unnecessary for my mare anymore, so we just stick to walking in both directions, diagonal rein changes, circles, serpentines, trotting both directions, trot poles ...
    07-28-2013, 10:02 PM
I've tried not lunging a few times, but then he always has buck in him as soon as I get on. It's more convenient to lunge and go without the jumpy ride :/
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    07-28-2013, 10:06 PM
Nell used to be like, but now I find that's she's matured quite a bit, and I think also become a bit bored of lunging, which makes lunging more work than it needs to be with her, and she's proven that she doesn't need to have the gas run out of her beforehand.
    07-28-2013, 10:27 PM
Originally Posted by mollymay    
I've tried not lunging a few times, but then he always has buck in him as soon as I get on. It's more convenient to lunge and go without the jumpy ride :/
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You need to learn how to work around that. By lunging and trying to wear one out like that it just takes longer and longer as time goes on.

Start out by gyping him around you on the end of the lead rope before you put her bridle on. Change directions often, your not trying to air him out just getting to pay attention. Then bend his head towards you use your stirrup to push his hip out, do it on both sides. Don't sneek around about doing it. You want to use the same intensity as you do as you ride. When you get on keep his headed tipped towards you, let him take a breath ask him to walk on a tight circle to the left, the same way you have his headed bent as you get on. If he's tight keep his head bent so he can't buck but rather go in a small left circle. When he lets go and is soft after a few small circles you can start letting him out. Then smoothly and quickly(not jerky) switch to the right side keep the circles small until he quits grabbing his butt. Then you can make your circles bigger. (HINT: don't let him get straight for very long between transitioning between the left and right side ,most horses that want to buck find it the opportune time to hog it out. But make sure its smooth when you transition)
As for bucking later in the ride it is really up to the circumstances on how to handle the bucking. Sometimes bending them out of it works the best and sometimes just picking them up and kicking through it and making him work hard will give him the idea that the bucking creates more work than it's worth. Lunging just delays the issue.
    07-28-2013, 10:45 PM
I ride western.
I also do a maximum of four circles in one direction, then untrack them, then go the other way. I also back them with different ways to back them each time - form ground I know four different ways to back them. I also do some forequarter pivots, flexing of the neck, turning the horse around with minimum movement from myself, and I also walk them around the arena once or twice - changing my speed and making sure the horse follows my movements.

Then on their back I flex their neck again, do one or two walk/trots around the arena, serpentines, stopping and backing, and also tight circles to help them bend and stretch.
    07-28-2013, 11:43 PM
With my mare I walk and trot a few times both directions, doing circles and then circling in and out, figures eights while changing speeds and extensions. Flexing her neck gently to either side, and then whoaing and backing. I work more on circles on her bad way before we canter and her good way after we canter for a few laps I try to incorporate some walk to canter transitions if she's feeling up to it. It really just depends on how tight she's feeling on the day that I'm riding.

My gelding I do long and low excersizes and lots of circles, half passing, side passing, bending exercizes like what others have said. I don't typically lunge because I find sometimes it hypes a horse up and just delays the inevitable. The gelding I keep his attention by playing with his mouth when he gets himself worked up and doing circles and unexpected things like turn on forehand and shoulders in. (He does dressage but I don't see much of a difference because he bolts and bucks like any other horse lol)

Mine have been through boot camp so when they tense up to buck I usually just go Ahh ahh! In a serious scolding tone and they think better of it. My mare minds it better than my gelding but his is mostly out of fear so I don't do it often. Lol just when he's doing it because he's grouchy.
    07-29-2013, 01:21 AM
Trigger, how should I say is a amazing horse and loves people! But, he has issues under saddle. I posted this whole thing because I need him to become smoother in turning. To the right he is nearly perfect, turning over his left shoulder can be ok or a nightmare! Especially turning over his left shoulder outside in our outdoor arena! Doing a backwards roll over the left shoulder is nearly impossible he pitches a fit and generally plants his feet and won't move. Then you try and get him to take a step and lope, his response is to do little crow hoppy things, toss his head, and sidestep to the right occasionally. This is ONLY over his left shoulder that he has issues. I haven't taken lessons with a trainer for about 4 months and when I was despite how amazing I know my trainer is he kinda made me feel like everything going wrong was my fault :/ so now as I still try to correct the issue im just wondering if I'm not warming him up enough to the left. Sorry for my rant! I just want to improve my warn up to see if it will help loosen him to the left. Thanx if you read all this! 8D
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    07-29-2013, 02:01 AM
Bend figure eight circles at the walk.

Long trot, loose rein.
Lope, loose rein.
Center, counter arcs and figure eights at the trot.
Counter Canter/Flying changes.
Speed transitions.

Basically just checking all my buttons.

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