Hi, I’m Holly Heidemann on behalf of Expert
Village and Bailey and I are going to show you now how to lope in the proper lead. We’ll
do a left lead and a right lead. A lot of people don’t understand that a horse has a
specific foot fall pattern for right turns and left turns. If your horse is not in the
correct lead, or foot fall pattern, what will happen is you’ll have an improper way of getting
around a barrel where they’re actually in an outside lead and it kind of looks like
they’re stumbling around it. What you want is that shoulder elevated on the inside, staying
on the proper lead so their hind end can get up and underneath them and their hind pivot
foot can get in the position to push off of that barrel when they’re finished. So I’m
going to show you both directions, left lead and a right lead. And I’m going to, you’re
going to notice that whatever lead they’re in, say I’m turning a circle to the left and
I’m loping in a left lead, that inside, or left foot, you will see reaching farthest
forward. That’s how you know they’re in the left lead. Conversely, when I’m going around
to the right, you’re going to see the right front foot reaching the farthest ahead. Now
they can do something called cross lead which is where they’re in one lead in the front
and one lead behind and you’ll notice when you’re riding that, that it feels very uncomfortable.
If you speed it up a little bit, most the time you can pop them into the correct lead.
The correct cue for a lead that most people use is if you’re going to go into a right
lead you hold the nose slightly on the right side, use the outside foot, your left foot
to push that hip over so they will engage and get the correct lead going to the right.
The second thing I’m going to show you, along with leads, is how to do a spiral on a horse.
And that’s where you start out on a very large circle and then you spiral in, going smaller,
smaller, smaller, until you’re loping a very small circle in the middle. That’s very good
to control a horse, keep them bent, and in the proper lead as they spiral down to a smaller
circle. It prepares them for a nice, snappy turn on the barrels where they’re going to
be able to maintain their motion, even though there sucked down there in a turn.