Lunging: Too simple for words! ;-)
Use lunging as a training tool!
So there you are, ready to start the next step in a young horses life. Seems simple enough, they need to turn circles around you…
But yet not all youngsters get that right away. Having a lunge pen is, of course, easier to teach them, but you still want to be able to control them somehow and not have them just frantically bobbing around in their own world.
If you have started with some kind of ground work, try to incorporate it into your lunging session. Use your voice so they get your aids easier and it’s a helpful tool to have when you are starting to ride them as well (a pre-tip :-p).
But lets start with the very beginning, and yes, this might take some time, it won’t work from the first or even the second go.
In the beginning, we do need to chase them around a bit, just try to start with walk and a bit of trot. Don’t overdo it the first time, you don’t only want a go, you want a ‘ho’ too!
Use your body language to incorporate the go and ‘ho’. What I do, ( and I know this clashes a bit with some other methods, but it totally works for me), is I step in front of them when I want them to slow down and I step behind them if I want them to move up.
If we can teach them to use their brain at this phase, the rest will be much easier and less traumatic.
Don’t discard lunging as an easy way to just let them blow off steam, use it to your advantage! Use it as a helpful training tool!