This afternoon the U.K. weather has given me an afternoon off of riding horses in order to put words to this months blog. Since my last blog I have been in the U.K. busy with courses and young horses. I am now in the final couple of weeks before leaving to start travel back to Australia via Europe and Dubai. There are still a couple of more courses here in England and then it is across to the Isle of Man and Ireland for courses over there as well.
My Australian course schedule starts in October with a course at home and then Perth, New Zealand and Victoria. More details are on the course schedule of the website.
In a previous blog, the Q & A format drew positive feedback and have continued with that below.
Q: How do I get my horse to walk out?
A: An old saying is that the walk is the mother of all gaits. In a previous lifetime the paddocks / pastures that we gathered or mustered cattle from where significantly larger than they are now. So we always appreciated a horse that could walk. I was not always successful at getting my horses to walk out in those days, these days my young horses/ colts can out walk most older saddle horses after a few rides. While on the ground I am looking at how my horses walk out and how they track up and are balanced. Many horses that riders can not get to walk out are on the forehand and not tracking up from the ground. I find if I drive my horses forward from behind the wither then this helps to encourage the horse to track up more. When the horse is ridden and on the forehand and is asked to move out more in the walk often the horse breaks into a jog or a trot. I liken this to having someone give you a slight push when you are walking down hill. If your weight is not back then you will have to break into a jog or a trot to regain your balance. When riding I also try and get my legs and body in time with the rhythm of the walk. My legs follow the swing of the barrel of the horse and try to get the walk to where it will start to swing my reins. At times I will slightly increase the tempo of the swing of my reins to get the horse to get with me a little more. We have all ridden horses that walk well in the direction of home and can get the reins to start to swing. I like them to walk away from home the same way.