How to make horse start galloping the good way - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-12-2019, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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How to make horse start galloping the good way

Hi,

I don’t know how to explain that, but when galloping, you need to gallop the good side to allow the horse to turn more easily. Like if I do a circle to the right, horse need to gallop on the right foot.

Whatever, the horse I’m training with is good on the right side, but when galloping to the left, he almost always start galloping on the wrong foot and I need to slow it down for the horse to start galloping the right way.

I tried to start galloping in a curve and any other aids that my instructor told me, but it’s almost always the same. Starting on the wrong foot. And when I’m getting the right foot, the horse is slower and want to break the gallop to start the other foot.

We don’t know what’s wrong because his legs look good and all, but maybe he just don’t like this side? Does it happen to other horses too?

Thx
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-12-2019, 03:02 PM
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Hiya welcome to the forum - just for anyone that might be confused quite a few places I've gone in the EU, at least, I've often come across that in really rural yards that they call the canter/lope a gallop instead. All the instructors at one place had no idea what I was trying to explain even with a native translator. It is walk - trot/jog > gallop. Confused me a lot when asked to gallop in the arena when they actually meant canter! OP it might help to know where you're from so we can help give better information? Terms used in UK and US can be different even and don't want to confuse you more.

@Nic727 which hand do your write with? Which foot do you put first on the stairs? Horses are the same - they have favourite sides too :) Sometimes it can be because they are uncomfortable/in pain going one direction in a circle.

More people will be along to answer you will find a lot of help here. Good luck!
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post #3 of 8 Old 05-12-2019, 03:41 PM
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I went to type out some information but I am so bad at explaining it.

This video is good, there are other good ones too you could look up on Youtube

boots, Kalraii and JoBlueQuarter like this.

Always stay humble and kind
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-12-2019, 03:43 PM
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This one is good too.

boots, jaydee, Kalraii and 1 others like this.

Always stay humble and kind
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post #5 of 8 Old 05-12-2019, 05:57 PM
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To help understand the sometimes confusing use of “gallop” and “canter” pointed out by Kalraii, here is a short quote from Martin Diggle’s book “Masters of Equitation on Canter”:

“Readers unfamiliar with the usage should note that many European writers have traditionally used the French ‘galop’ (which serves for both canter and gallop) when referring to the three-beat canter. This, in many instances, has been rendered as ‘gallop’ in translations....”

Diggle’s book also helps readers understand that more techniques have been employed to ask a horse to canter than have been employed to ask for any other gait.

When a horse favor’s one particular lead, getting the horse to take the other lead may call for using techniques that don’t encourage a pretty or “straight” canter. This is especially true when a rider does not want to take the long route of developing a horse’s strength and flexibility to develop a more “technically correct” canter. Posters will probably recommend a variety of these techniques. Experimentation may be necessary to discover which technique will work for a particular horse.

Whatever method is finally employed, it is important that a rider not make it more difficult than necessary for a horse to achieve the intended goal. Firstly, the rider should be balanced and moving well with the horse. The horse, also, should be as well balanced as possible. Then, one should realize that a horse cantering on the left lead will have its shoulders and hips aligned so the left hip and shoulder are slightly in advance of the right hip and shoulder; the opposite is true in the right lead. This is why people imitating a cantering horse “skip”. Since the horse’s inside hip is a bit advanced in a left lead, the rider’s left hip should also be slightly advanced; again, the opposite is true when asking for a right lead.

With these basics in mind, let’s hear some of the techniques forum members have employed.

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post #6 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 10:37 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalraii View Post
Hiya welcome to the forum - just for anyone that might be confused quite a few places I've gone in the EU, at least, I've often come across that in really rural yards that they call the canter/lope a gallop instead. All the instructors at one place had no idea what I was trying to explain even with a native translator. It is walk - trot/jog > gallop. Confused me a lot when asked to gallop in the arena when they actually meant canter! OP it might help to know where you're from so we can help give better information? Terms used in UK and US can be different even and don't want to confuse you more.

@Nic727 which hand do your write with? Which foot do you put first on the stairs? Horses are the same - they have favourite sides too 🙂 Sometimes it can be because they are uncomfortable/in pain going one direction in a circle.

More people will be along to answer you will find a lot of help here. Good luck!
Hi,

Yes I mean canter. I’m living in Canada (from Quebec) and in French we rarely use the word canter.

Yeah maybe the horse has a favorite side. I know last day he maybe had some pains to one of his legs, because during winter horses here are not doing a lot of exercises. But even during summer I have difficulties on the left side. Maybe I get it first time 40% of the time.

There is certainly something I don’t understand. I know my instructor is saying to keep his head a bit to the left, block the left upper legs with your foot and start canter, but maybe I’m mixing stuffs here lol.
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post #7 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horseylover1_1 View Post
I went to type out some information but I am so bad at explaining it.

This video is good, there are other good ones too you could look up on Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dVE0IU7xflQ
Quote:
Originally Posted by horseylover1_1 View Post
Thank you


Talking about straight canter, when on the right, the horse is going fast and is comfortable, but on the left side... it’s slow and he mostly stop canter by itself or stop and start the wrong way.

I have an exam where I need to do a little parkour and I don’t know if I should change horse or keep trying.

Last edited by jaydee; 05-15-2019 at 11:07 AM.
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post #8 of 8 Old 05-14-2019, 08:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nic727 View Post
Talking about straight canter, when on the right, the horse is going fast and is comfortable, but on the left side... it’s slow and he mostly stop canter by itself or stop and start the wrong way.

I have an exam where I need to do a little parkour and I don’t know if I should change horse or keep trying.
I don’t know what the “parkour” you mention is, but if you have an exam soon where you must ride a good canter I would recommend changing horses.

The issue you describe with this particular horse would probably take months to correct employing exercises to build the horse’s strength and flexibility. An evaluation and adjustment by a good equine chiropractor might also help.

When a horse is cantering “straight”, the horse’s inside hind leg works the hardest. The two legs that work independently – the outside hind and inside fore – serve primarily as pivots over which the horse’s body moves. While the inside hind and outside fore work in unison similar to that employed in a trot, the hind leg serves the primary purpose of driving the horse forward.

When a cantering horse is moving with a relatively straight body, the inside hind must reach a point beneath the horse that is close to its center of gravity. This calls for flexibility. It must, then, use strength to push the horse’s body both upward and forward. The flexibility and strength demanded by a good canter often causes a horse to “cheat” by swinging its hind end to the inside. Riders who attempt to achieve a particular lead by swinging the horse’s haunches to the inside end up encouraging such “cheating”. Some riders are not concerned about a horse cantering with its haunches to the inside. Those who wish to develop the strength, flexibility, and agility of their horse should think more about “straightness”.

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post #9 of 8 Old 05-14-2019, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nic727 View Post
We don’t know what’s wrong because his legs look good and all, but maybe he just don’t like this side? Does it happen to other horses too?

Just like you may be right-handed or left-handed, horses are too. They almost always have a side they prefer better. Most horses are left-handed which means they like the left lead better (and of course the term you are searching for is "LEAD"). When a horse is on the left lead, the right hind foot hits the ground first. Followed by the left hind and the right front together. And then lastly the left front foot.


It is called a "lead" because the horse's left front foot is LEADING ahead of the other one. That's why it is called the left lead. And yes, works the best if you want to ask the horse to turn a circle to the left. Their feet are in the proper position for them to execute a turn appropriately.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Nic727 View Post
Whatever, the horse I’m training with is good on the right side, but when galloping to the left, he almost always start galloping on the wrong foot and I need to slow it down for the horse to start galloping the right way.

So it sounds like your horse actually prefer his right lead, which is okay. You'll just need to work hard on the other side to help him strengthen it.



Now, does you horse have any possible soundness or lameness problems that might inhibit him from wanting to go into the left lead? If pain is a possibility, then you should take him to a good lameness vet first to have his pain problem addressed. If something hurts him when he tries to gallop on the left lead, of course he is going to want to avoid it.



The key for getting a horse to take off on the correct lead you are asking for is to make sure their body is ready. They need to be collected enough to they can reach that hind leg under their belly to push off into the gallop. And they need to have their HIPS and SHOULDERS in the correct location to get the correct hind foot in the starting position.

--For a left lead, you want to push your horse's hips to the left. This will cause them to "step under" themselves with the right hind foot, so that it can be the first footfall.

--For a right lead, you want to push your horse's hips to the right.



For the shoulders, you just mostly want to keep them straight and out of the way. Don't let them lean or drop a shoulder.


Honestly, I care less about what their head/neck/nose is doing -- so long as the HIP and SHOULDERS are in the correct position.

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