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Hey, excuse my ignorance, but...

If a horse is primarily trained in a Western pleasure jog but can be ridden English, does it just require asking for a longer stride so that the trot can track up?

I was casually looking at a 4 YO WP QH and saw him being ridden English. He far from tracked up but I don't know if it was his conformation (posty behind). Also the canter looked really downhill and on the forehand. One of my trainers said to skip him because he'd probably been started too young and his back toes were dragging but that's another story.
 

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Looking at how a WP horse moves their entire body...you have a lot to retrain.
Movement and motion, head carriage, today so many no longer arch the tail, they don't track-up well...
No contact used as English riders discipline requires...

It will take intense retraining and some I have to wonder if you can undo the muscle memory the horse now has to be a WP horse...
To me as I am not a fan of WP carriage of the horse, I see a horse who shows those classes even when turned out in pasture with other horse he never trots, he never raises his head to a natural elevation, he never, he never, he never...
I may miss it but don't think so...
His way of travel is so ingrained in his brain and muscle memory I truly don't know if the animal can carry himself as a English horse would need to do.
To me there is no impulsion among other things you want to see in the English discipline...

I think the trainer was correct, not because of what they saw cause I didn't see it, but because of the possibilities of not being able to overcome taught movement.
I can't imagine the stress and strain to the body to hold that false frame the WP horses do today.:frown_color:
:runninghorse2:...
jmo...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for confirming essentially what I did NOT post. My trainer (who I rely on for her wide ranging experience) said exactly the same things. I just didn't want to stir up any controversy lol.

I'm at an age (65) where I don't have the time to have a horse retrained, as quiet and calm (and subdued) as this horse seemed to be.
My trainer had some interesting things to say about how a slow collected WP canter was achieved...and this horse is young.
Thanks for chiming in!
 

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On the other hand, if this horse is calm, and reliable and easy to ride, you may WANT that kind of mount.



I'm not a fan of WP movement, either. But, some horses trained this way are perfectly able to move out when asked. But, yeah, if the conformation is very downhill, and the horse's movement is really slow, you might not like that in an English saddle. A Western saddle has more of a rise in front and can compensate better for a downhill back.
 

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What "type" of "English" are you talking about? There is a difference in the straighter leg movement and naturally lower head carriage of the AQHA-show type of Hunter Under Saddle horse vs the more animated type of movement you may see on a non-breed-show English horse. I'm speaking generally here, of course, not absolutely.

If they are selling him because he prefers to move out instead of be a top WP horse, maybe he would be happy trying something new with you.

But if he's built to naturally move like a WP horse and is content doing so, is it worth changing his entire world in case you can mold him into something else? My late AQHA WP-bred horse would extend his gaits when asked, but it was NOT natural or comfortable for his conformation - he was never forced to travel low & slow, that's how he naturally carried himself even as a foal on pasture.

Always pick the horse who is built to do the job you want, don't try to make a horse do a job he isn't suited for.
 
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