Running the Bases

Horse and Rider|Summer 2020

Running the Bases
Before starting this exercise, make sure you’re familiar with the center of the arena. If you’re in a new space, try walking or trotting the bases first so you get comfortable.
BRAD BARKEMEYER

Are you utilizing the space you have to ensure that your horse is able to perform at his best?

Knowing where you are in the arena at all times is important, especially if you compete in pattern events that require you to use the entire pen. Being able to gauge where you are in the arena in relation to the fence helps you properly utilize the real estate you have so your horse can perform at his best.

Brad Barkemeyer, Scottsdale, Arizona, grew up on a ranch in Montana, giving him an appreciation for versatile horses and the Western lifestyle. He now trains working cow horses and roping horses and coaches amateur riders of all competitive levels, focusing on AQHA and NRCHA events. Learn more on his Facebook page, Barkemeyer Performance Horses.

At home you know your arena, what the size of it is, where the gates are, where your horse likes to lean, but when you’re traveling to different arenas for competition, your sizing is going to differ every time you step in the pen, which is why it’s important to take time to get familiar with it.

Get Comfortable at Center

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Summer 2020