Page:Notes on equitation and horse training.djvu/42

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Difference between haunches in and two-track work.—The movement of swinging the haunches in must not be confused with two-track work. The latter is a regular movement to be taken up after the completion of the suppling of the forehand as well as that of the haunches; in this movement the horse, placed or held correctly in a position from head to croup, is oblique to his path rather than curved to it. The former, on the contrary, is merely an exercise with the object of making the haunches supple and easily controlled.

Dismounted work.—Before beginning mounted work on the haunches, it is sometimes useful to pave the way by dismounted work with the whip; such work may be advantageously combined with longeing. Work with the whip is directed especially at the hind quarters and should not be confused with the dismounted bending lessons which we will take up later in curb-bridle work.

There are two principal movements:

(1) To move the horse to the front with the whip.—The horse being on the track and on the left hand, seize the reins about 6 inches from the bit with the left hand, pull them forward and at the same time strike light taps with the whip behind the girth where the leg is usually applied.

If the horse moves forward, let him walk a few steps, make much of him, and then halt him.

If he stands still, gradually increase the force of the whip taps until he moves.

If the horse backs away, hold him tight with the hand on the reins and continue the use of the whip behind the girth until he moves forward; then caress him and halt him.

(2) To swing the haunches.—The trooper standing on the left of the horse seizes the reins with the left hand and applies light taps with the whip behind the girth until the horse moves the haunches from left to right.