This is a different take on the traditional figure 8 pattern which is below. In this pattern, draw the horse from between the barrels toward you, when he reaches you, turn with him – shoulder to shoulder and then send him out and around the outside of the first barrel.
Draw your horse toward you, now go the other way, circle with him, shoulder to shoulder and send him out and around the second barrel, Again, draw him toward you and then praise and make much of your horse!
To advance this pattern you can ask your horse to walk when you send him away and ask him to trot when he is coming toward you, eventually asking him to canter toward you! You may need to trot backward during the draw phase, thus ‘being the change you want to see in your horse’
In this more traditional figure 8 you can create more drive, more ability to send your horse away.
You’ll need a bit of a longer rope to play with these patterns at higher speeds.
I like this pattern for so many relationship building ideas.
- Balancing your ability to send your horse away and bring him back at any speed, rather than just having your horse follow you.
- Helping you and your horse become puzzle solvers
- Your horse gets to learn to follow your idea, not just the feel on the lead-rope.
To advance this pattern, increase speed, quality or distance or take all of your ropes off and play at liberty, with no ropes at all!
Enjoy building a broader, deeper and wider language with your horse!
For the Love of Horses,
International Horsemanship Coach and Author
“Changing Lives, One Relationship at a Time”
15,000 served and counting!