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ok what is the deal with the dragging heads and extremly slow movement IN HUNTER (flat) CLASSES!!! is this actualy correct? and how can they get over fences like that? idk but it is horribley painful to watch for me, and even worse when im in 4-h they always beat me even when i have an awsome ride and one of them makes a mistake, although i have to say 4-h is very biased. lol one time virtualy all of the horses in my class bucked (one girl got bucked off) and the judge had the nerve to tell me that my horse looked high strung (which i admit he isnt the quietest, but that day he was one of the quietest in the class). but anyways why do pple want thier horses heads dragging in the dirt? i dont get it
 

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I have wondered this to. Maybe because a hunter should appear calm and easy to ride??

I am doing some pleasure classes with my gelding and I am nervous. He is a very calm horse and very easy and responsive but his head just doesn't sit as low as some of the others I see!
 

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I dunno. Sometimes I think people take a "desirable trait" and exaggerate it until it is no longer desirable.

So many show horse characteristics are taken to the extreme.

I personally dislike the really slow WP type Quarter Horses (maybe the Hunters are similar, I am not as familiar with them). They move so slow that if my horse cantered or trotted like that out on the trail I would make him to go faster!

Really though, it's not the speed, but the impulsion. The WP horses look like they lack impulsion to me.

And then look at the poor Tennessee Walking Horses. They are naturally gaited and have wonderful gaits, but no, the show horse people aren't happy with the natural gaits and have to exaggerate them until they are grotesque caricatures of what the horse used to be. :cry:

So I just trail ride. I don't have to conform to anyone else's ideals. As long as me and my horse are relatively safe and well trained, we don't have to worry about what others think of us. We just go make ourselves happy!
 

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Well, I know that getting your horse to stretch down, long and low is good. Many top level riders incorporate it into their daily riding, from GP Jumpers, Upper Level Dressage and Eventing - because the action gets them to work their topline and stretches their muscles.

BUT in order for this to work, the horse has to be on their back end, spine rounded *lifted* and tracking up. The horse has to be moving upwards in their shoulders, not downwards.

When I watch this new trend in the QH world, or as it is better known as the "Peanut Rolling" I watch for the proper movements for this head low thing to be effective....and I see none.

Instead I see the horse moving downwards through their shoulders, I don't see tracking up at all, I see butts high and the horses, to be honest, look miserable.

Do I understand it? Not at all. No matter how hard I look, I cannot see 1 horse moving correctly to make this "position" benefitial for the horse.

This fad, trend - has saddened me. It has also saddened friends of mine who were HUGE APHA circuit competators....and have abandoned their sport due to this.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
well, i know that getting your horse to stretch down, long and low is good. Many top level riders incorporate it into their daily riding, from gp jumpers, upper level dressage and eventing - because the action gets them to work their topline and stretches their muscles.

But in order for this to work, the horse has to be on their back end, spine rounded *lifted* and tracking up. The horse has to be moving upwards in their shoulders, not downwards.

When i watch this new trend in the qh world, or as it is better known as the "peanut rolling" i watch for the proper movements for this head low thing to be effective....and i see none.

Instead i see the horse moving downwards through their shoulders, i don't see tracking up at all, i see butts high and the horses, to be honest, look miserable.

Do i understand it? Not at all. No matter how hard i look, i cannot see 1 horse moving correctly to make this "position" benefitial for the horse.

This fad, trend - has saddened me. It has also saddened friends of mine who were huge apha circuit competators....and have abandoned their sport due to this.
thank you!!!!!!
 

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I agree with trailhorserider. I used to work with show Saddlebreds. That was my way to work and be around horses until I actually got my own. I've done the stretchers & chains. We never "sored" the horses though. And as far as padding, the barn owner might have a wedge added to the shoes...but nothing like what I saw on that Walking Horse video. Since I left that barn, I have done nothing but trail ride. I have no interest to show. But a horse carrying it's head that low looks unnatural. It's nice to see a horse relaxed...but there's a difference between looking relaxed and looking for a place to lay down.
 

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To sum it up - this "Movement" is done to win, because it is what the Judges look for - so therefore, if that is what places, that is what is done.

Which makes it - no longer about the horse - but the trophy, the name, the prestige.
 

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it just looks horrid to me im more of an arab fan lol
You would be amazed at just how closely arabs and quarter horses are judged. Many quarter horse people use arab shows as schooling shows because the judging is so similar. Arabs have a slightly different conformation and carry their heads a bit higher but it's pretty close to the same way of riding.
 

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To sum it up - this "Movement" is done to win, because it is what the Judges look for - so therefore, if that is what places, that is what is done.

Which makes it - no longer about the horse - but the trophy, the name, the prestige.

It is amazing how quickly a fad takes control of any sport. I know that the peanut rollers are on the outbound train. I've noticed that the horses that have a more forward movement are starting to place now. In fact, judges will say "lope with a forward movement" now. That's not to say a peanut roller won't win a class, but they are headed out.
 

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I think that is great! I remember when that weird canter was huge and that's dissapearing in the QH world.

Fads are prevelant in the Hunter world as well, I just wish the perching and laying on the horses neck fad will dissapear.
 

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People who are uneducated in western pleasure are unaware of the beauty of what the horse is doing. If you take a few classes you will get a better understanding for it, you might not like it, but you will better understand the class. The thing I don't agree with is in peanut rolling when the horse seems as if they stop for a second and then keep going. But then again it does show how disciplined the horse is.

Just for a horse to travel at that slow of speed is amazing. For a horse to do that, it has to have alot of training and skill. Not to mention a high-strung horse wouldn't be best. And Justdressageit, is right. Youtube a few shows.
 

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it's basically a form of dressage.
 

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I didnt read the whole thread, so please excuse this if it was all ready said.

Peanut rolling is no longer correct and is punished in AQHA classes, same with troping and having your horse tilted. Horses are suppose to have their poll level with their withers. As for the being slow. there are some good moving QHs out there, however a lot of WP horses are also being shown HUS to get those all around points, but they have never really been taught how to move up.

I have some various feelings about 4H and the open shows that offer WP and HUS saddle classes. To me (and please don't take this as offensive) a lot of those horses are the ones that could not make it on the breed circuit for various reasons, and aren't always the best examples of what a good WP or HUS horse should look like.
 

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In Australia, peanut rollers rarely win now. Most judges prefer a natural head carriage, and like forward movement. In response to the OP's question about why their head carriage is like that, it just is! Its what your horse must do to win. I'm sure I have a copy of the AQHA judging criteria somewhere, but I'm too lasy to look it up cause I really should be doing my homework :)
 

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I do not see how there can be termed any "discipline" or "amazing movement" with WP horses. They lack impulsion, move downhill and are strung out... none of that screams amazing training or discipline to me, it screams stupid fad that makes horses look browbeaten and miserable... Sure it takes tons of training to achieve such an unnaturally slow and sluggish movement, you have to force a horse to move like that, it is not something to be trained for the benefit of the animal so I do not see how it pertains to dressage...modern dressage maybe with their rolkur, but classical dressage no, not at all.

Hence the reason I do not show.
 

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I am not going to get involved in this thread, becuase the 'tone' is already set.

Please note however, the western pleasure and hunter under saddle horses that are WINNING at AQHA shows are BRED to have a lower head set...

Yes, it was taken to far, and yes AQHA is trying to improve the movement on top of it all.

It is not like they are taking an arabian or morgan horse and forcing his high head set low... that just doesnt work.

If you don't like it than don't do it. Simple as that.


- an avid fan of AQHA, APHA, and ApHC horses and the events they compete in.
 
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