HQ magazine|October/November 2019
WHAT IS LONG-LINING?
Long-lining is quite similar to lunging, in that the horse is worked from the ground, but two long leads, or lunge reins, are used. It also bears a resemblance to ground driving, except that the horse is worked from the side, rather than from behind.
Long-lining is well known as a safe training tool, and once you’ve got the hang of operating the two long lines and a whip, and moving with your horse, you will be able to reap all the benefits of this valuable technique.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
Long-lining simulates the aids given through the reins when working under saddle, so it is particularly beneficial to young, unbacked horses. The horse will be able to get used to the cues from the reins without the added inputs coming from a rider on his back. This allows him to get an understanding of the rein aids in isolation, without any confusing messages coming from the rider’s seat or leg aids. It also keeps the rider safe in those first few weeks and months of training!
Long-lining educates the horse through pressure and release. It teaches the horse to yield to pressure, which many consider incredibly valuable in creating a sensitive horse under saddle, who is aware of and attentive to even the subtlest of aids. Moving forward, turning and halting will all improve once long-line training begins.
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