Lungeing a young horse, with Laura Bechtolsheimer

Time: 8m 50secs
Video RatingVideo Rating - 5 stars559
About this video
Laura lunges her new 4 year old, Stepdance (known as Step), in preparation for riding him. She explains why she does this and shows the Bechtolsheimer's preferred equipment for lungeing, which is both simple and unusual! Laura talks about how she uses body language, why moving around the arena with the horse is important and how being on the lunge has helped Step go from 'trotting for a 10' (he was trained to do this for the sales in Germany, where they recently bought him) to being able to just chill!


sportysmom 30 Jun 2009 I found the HO Kavalkade lunging aide at Dressage Extensions in the USA for what I think is a reasonable amount of money. It is made of very, very soft but substantial cord. I'd be cautious of making a homemade one out of clothes line, leather or rope because it looks like it could produce rubs under the horse's elbows. When my horse was first getting used to it and "figuring it out" he put a lot of tension on it and at a trot the action of his front legs really made it slide back and forth. When he dropped his head, the sliding stopped, and eventually I expect he will keep his head down. Right now he is behaving like a stallion and arguing about it. I also find the length adjustment very handy and worth buying the real thing for. I own a Pessoa training system and like it for a horse that is moderately compliant. The cords are elastic and go from rings on the surcingle thru the bit rings back thru side rings on the surcingle to rings on the butte strap. When the horse moves, the action of his hind legs rocks the bit until the horse softens enuf to take the tension off. Same principle. But! I've had a couple more exciteable horses just not cope with the butte strap. They ran, it chased them, too much excitement to learn anything. I like the HO Kavalkade but there was a learning curve for the horse and I would want him to understand lunging well before I introduced it. Then I would keep him at a walk until he figured it out. When trotting is introduced, I would bring him back to a walk if he started to get overly excited and let him think about it some more until he softened. There's no point having him dash about hoping to run away from it. Some horses can get very stubborn and while I haven't had a problem, I could see it happening. I'm glad I started with my Connemara (was a breeding stallion, now a gelding) who while he still thinks he is godzilla is sensible, not prone to panic, thinks about everything and can be counted on not to get himself into trouble. Overall, I think it is a wonderful invention and will use it because it's easy and does the job.
Fiona Price, Horse Hero Founder 3 Jun 2009 Laura had it made especially for her. If you can hang on, we are building a shop at the moment and are planning to have these made to sell on the site!
meggiemoe 2 Jun 2009 Thank you so much to HH for taking the video and Laura for taking the time out of her schedule to make the video. I was wondering, where ever did you find that lunging caveson? I have been hunting for a couple of years for something similar and have only been able to find cheap cavesons. This looks like a nicely built one that have everything that I would need. Thanks again for all of the invaluable info!
Story 17 May 2009 Hey Kayla, this aid can be made by going up to TSC or or another store like it. I have made them before out of cotton rope and two clips. I can also get them from my Amish friend that makes most of my leather tack. I suggest cotton because it will not burn like other synthetic materials will. I have also seen leather western reins used and just tied up at the back, but I am leery of doing it that way because most reins are flat and can rub and be uncomfortable.But like I said, very easy and cheap to make.
mariamarquise 13 May 2009 Hi Laura, this video has been a great practical help for me with a horse diagnosed with spinal problems. Our physio suggested we use this approach and it's starting to work. Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge. I have a question - I have ordered but not yet received a proper Kavalkade rein so am using a home-made version, made from a soft lunge line. My horse sometimes tends to take a slight outside bend, so both his nose and quarters are pointing to the outside ever so slightly. It could be that the real Kavalkade rein will slide better and will correct this but meanwhile, would you be able to comment why this happens and how to counteract it? It almost looks like he is going in a renvers. This mainly happens on the right rein - his stiffer/stronger side.

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