Trail

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As many equestrians take to the roads, keeping themselves and their horses safe while sharing road space with cars, trucks, motorcycles and bicycles is a key concern. Increasing development and traffic volume in rural areas have made road riding a necessity for some riders.

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On any riding vacation, whether it’s camping or glamping, there are a few essentials that I always bring along.

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Function follows form, according to Dr. Trisha Dowling. It’s the conformation or structure of a horse that ultimately determines its athletic function.

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Where Should You Start? By Jec A. Ballou. When spring finally arrives, the sunny riding season ahead can greet riders with both excitement and anxiety. Where do I start, you might wonder as you calculate how unfit your horse has become from a winter of being off work. How long will it take to ease him back to fitness? What sorts of exercises and timelines should I use? In this article, I’ll answer these questions plus offer a simple schedule in addition to some rules you never want to break.

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What do we look for in trail horse conformation? The quality of the foot has been discussed in a previous article and therefore this article will focus on other key aspects.

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Wrangling means working with horses on the trail or in camp, including when they are not ridden or packed. It involves bringing them in at morning, turning them out at night, and managing their movement and use.

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Ah, the good old days. That was the time when someone said, “I think that horse might buck,” and you said, “I’ll ride him.” Secretly, you hoped he would buck. You had been bored for the last 20 minutes and it was time for some excitement.

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One pole? There is still plenty to do - Simple exercises can sometimes be the most effective because riders are apt to practice them more consistently. And when it comes to movement and fitness, consistency matters above all. I often use the following single pole exercises in clinics because they offer an easy way to derive the postural benefits of pole work without the logistics and effort involved in setting up more complex routines. When you are short on time or dealing with poor weather, these exercises offer a convenient way of ensuring you do not miss the calisthenics your horse needs.

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We’ve all had a horse that was hesitant to go forward with ease and willingness. I want to share the story of one such colt I started recently, and some of the strategies I employed to help him “free up.” These techniques work well for horses of all ages. This article is ultimately about rider self-awareness, timing, and avoiding the overuse of pressure, which unintentionally dulls the horse. Take special note of the tips for success, and the pitfalls many riders face when their horse is dull to their aids.

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“Let’s take a break here,” Rob LaFrance called from behind me. It was late May, 2019 and three of us were riding a 60-kilometre stretch of the historic Collins Overland Telegraph Trail in central British Columbia, which hadn’t been ridden in its entirety in at least half a century. The trip was an opportunity to ride along a piece of history, experience the challenges of those who had traveled before us, and celebrate the reopening of the trail.

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