Thursday, August 11, 2011

Circular Impressions

In a previous article titled Get My Drift?, I referred to a horse leaning on a rider's outside rein and leg and drifting outward back towards a wall. This causes steering problems. The article touched on circles as an exercise to tell if your horse is leaning outward.

I wanted to include another problem riders have to watch out for when doing proper circles and that's the horse fading in.  You want to make the proper impression when doing circles - a perfectly rounded circle where the horse stays between the reins and your legs. (Photo showing circular impressions in the sand).

Fading In
   Is also called 'dropping an inside shoulder' or leaning in.  Your circles resemble more of a tear drop shape than a circle.
  Though it may not seem like a big deal if it happens, it does cause problems in other areas.

Going Somewhere
  Fading in will cause a horse to eventually not want to pick up a correct lead before loping.
  The horse will not want to stay straight in other exercises which will throw off their balance.
  The horse ducks in somewhere and you scrap your knees on something.
  You get the idea.

 So just like the problem of a horse drifting, it's equally important to correct a horse from fading in.

Circle Drill
  I can't believe that I haven't talked about the CIRCLE DRILL yet in an article. Wow! I'm amazed.
  Dell Hendricks was featured in a Horse& Rider magazine issue years ago where he descibed how he made his perfect circles in his circle maneuver. Here is the article on his website:
  That is the exercise I use to fix fading in and leaning out.

 Putting my Spin on Circles
@KISS Reiners

No comments:

Post a Comment