Teaching a Circle on the Lunge

Work your horse on the lunge line ensuring that he is able to carry himself with his head and neck softly flexed to the inside of the circle and that he is not falling onto his inside shoulder. Practice walking him in straight lines for short distances so that he learns how to carry himself straight.

When you progress to the circle work use cones or blocks to mark out your circle. To mark out an accurate clock face on a circle about 10 – 12 metres in size. Allow your horse to go around the outside of the cones and you stay in the middle of the cones.

Walk next to him and use your schooling stick to gently tap him on his shoulder if he falls in. You will find that he wants to move out and away from the cones so you will not need to assist him much. You can use this to your advantage so that he places himself in a good position around your circle.

I usually start my circle of with 12 small cones or 8 large ones. This is a great exercise to help you become accurate in seeing when your horse is crooked or flexed around a circle.

Position your circles in each corner of the arena and you are teaching him to be both relaxed accurate and correctly balanced around the school.