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Working Your Horse Over Poles

Start your horse over poles, then discover more challenging exercises to perfect your performance over poles.

The American Quarter Horse Journal
July 7, 2014

working your horse over poles

The fundamentals learned from working your horse over poles will come in handy in trail, western riding and ranch horse pleasure classes. (Credit: Journal photo)

Starting your horse over poles doesn’t need to be a struggle. The fundamentals learned from working your horse over poles will come in handy in trail, western riding and ranch horse pleasure classes. Plus, working your horse over poles has a lot of benefits besides show-ring performance.

In the July issue of The American Quarter Horse Journal, AQHA Professional Horseman Kelly McDowall offers his expertise in two different articles. In the first, “Pole Practice,” Kelly provides the basics for starting a horse over poles:

  • What your horse should know before starting over poles
  • How to start your horse over poles
  • How to address your horse hitting poles

Kelly builds on these basics in the second article, “Borrow a Trainer.” In this article, Kelly introduces his pattern of eight poles that he uses to fine-tune horses over trail obstacles. In this second article, he builds on the basics he went over in “Pole Practice.” Kelly’s eight-pole set-up highlights several teachable moments:

  • Utilizing space
  • Approaching an obstacle
  • Leaving an obstacle

Kelly’s eight-pole set-up is good for jogging and loping, and it even provides a box for turn-arounds. With only eight poles, you can prepare your horse for almost any trot- or lope-over situation you might encounter in the show pen. In the July Journal, Kelly gets you from start to finish with pole work so you are prepared for the show ring.

Head to www.aqha.com/journal to access the digital edition as a Journal current subscriber, download the new Journal app or become a subscriber today.

If print is more your style, order a single print copy from 800-291-7323 so you don’t miss out on the great information presented in “Pole Practice” and “Borrow a Trainer” in the July Journal.