Hand gallop - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 05-25-2012, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Hand gallop

I have a show coming up, and one class asks for a hand gallop. What exactly is it, and how do I ride it?
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post #2 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 12:14 AM
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I had a friend that had a hand gallop in her class a few weeks back and the trainer said that the judges are looking for a smallish extended canter with you in Two-point or something. I think. Just to give you an idea. Good luck at your show!
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post #3 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 12:41 AM
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In the racing / trackwork side, a hand gallop is a relaxed, even, controlled gallop. Its not a gallop that you see in races, but it is the stage when the canter turns into a gallop. Thats the general gist of it.

But since its in a show, I wouldnt take my word on what the judges want.
Just double check before you go out in the ring.
Good luck!

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post #4 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 01:43 AM
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i practice my hand galloping along the long side of the arena. i sit down and open my chest along the short side of the arena for a nice collected canter. Then on the long side i open him up a little bit and go into more of a half seat. The goal is to not allow the horse to get strung out.

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post #5 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 02:23 AM
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You might try googleing it for a diagram or find something on youtube to give you a visual. A hand gallop is a controlled gallop, don't go flying around but show an increase in speed and get the suspension.

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
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post #6 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 04:00 AM
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A hand gallop is a faster, slightly extended canter ridden in two point. I have seen judges mark down substantially for people not bridging their reins, so always remember to bridge the reins.
It doesn't matter if your horse doesn't slightly extend the gait, just make sure that you ride it faster than a normal canter in the correct position. A pace you would use on a cross country course is what you're looking for.

Here is a link on how to bridge the reins if you weren't sure :)
- EquestrianHow2
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post #7 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 10:55 AM
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If you've ever played with your horse's gears out in the woods or in a field, my take on hand gallop is the highest gear of cantering before the horse lowers and flattens out for a true gallop.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #8 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 11:31 AM
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In England it's called Pipestem

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post #9 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 02:37 PM Thread Starter
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Okay, sounds do-able. My horse has a nice collected show canter, and he's capable of going faster. I'll practice it next week, when it's cooler. :)
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post #10 of 13 Old 05-26-2012, 06:19 PM
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here is a good article about it!!
Hand Gallop Gait

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