All horse enthusiasts know there are separate and distinct patterns to each of a horse’s three main gaits (walk, trot and lope/canter), but not many know each pattern. Learning the cadence for each gait and studying it while riding until you know which foot is going to move next and where will unlock the next level of horsemanship for you and your mount.
Properly timing cues at the exact right split-second for your horse can make a huge difference in his performance. Here’s a photo that illustrates this point. See the big movement the horse’s left front leg is making to execute this turnaround? An improperly timed cue could cause him to painfully bang his shod hoof against the sensitive cannon bone of his right front leg. Sure, the boots help protect against that, but timing the cue at the proper instant results in a cleaner, crisper movement as well.
For more useful and humorous blog postings by Jolyn and other horse bloggers, check out Tri-State Livestock News’ blog here.