Opening a gate from horseback

Opening a gate from horseback

Opening a gate from horseback 17 NOVEMBER

Before you can open a gate without dismounting, there are a series of manoeuvres that your horse needs to learn.

These include how to stop and stand still while you shift your weight in the saddle; how to move sideways; and how to back up. You will also have to learn how to safely manoeuvre the horse through the gate.

Backing up
Initially, backing up and side-passing should be taught from the ground. To back up, stop your horse and push it gently off balance until it takes a step back.

Say “Back!” and reward it.

Repeat until the horse understands exactly what “Back!” means.

Once the horse backs up easily on command, use the word while mounted. Reward it with

“Good boy!” or a pat when it goes backwards, even if only one step.

As aids to help the horse go back, alternate a gentle pull-and-release on the reins, while gently bumping it on alternate sides with your legs. To open a gate, a horse must back up 1,5m in a straight line.

Side-passing is also taught from the ground. Using the word “Side!”, gently push with your fist behind the girth, where you would put your leg if you were mounted, and pull the horse’s head slightly towards you.

Once mounted, line the horse up parallel with a wooden fence and bounce your leg gently against its side, saying “Side!”until it moves away from your leg.

You can also use a dressage whip to gently tap the horse on its shoulder and then its hindquarter to reinforce the sideways movement.

Using a rope gate
In the show ring, wooden gates are considered dangerous, so a rope gate is used. Use similar equipment – a rope strung between two poles 2m apart – when you start training your horse to open a gate.

  • Walk your horse up parallel with the poles until its inside shoulder is level with the end of the rope looped over one pole. The horse should stand still while you take the rope off the pole with your inside hand.
  • Back up until the horse’s nose is parallel with the pole. Stop. Turn the horse’s shoulder inwards using your reins, then move sideways until its front end is through the poles.
  • Walk forward slowly while turning so that the horse moves between the poles and faces in the opposite direction, again parallel to the poles.
  • Stop. Back the horse up until its inside shoulder is next to the pole where you need to hook the rope end. Stop. Hook up the rope.

The real thing
Once your horse is comfortable with the rope gate, you can train it to enable you to open farm gates. The first step is to accustom the horse to the gate itself. This is best done from the ground.

Lead the horse slowly through a sturdy farm gate, stop, and then gently move the gate to and fro next to it.

Once the horse is confident, mount up and try to open the gate from the saddle.

Dr Mac is an academic, a practising equine veterinarian and a stud owner. 

The post Opening a gate from horseback appeared first on Farmer's Weekly.

https://www.farmersweekly.co.za/animals/horses/opening-gate-horseback/

Lifestyle

Church Point House, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Several features delight us in this compact Church Point residence in Sydney, Australia. Its location is one of them. The house looks toward Sydney’s Pittwater that is bordered on one side by Australia’s second-oldest National Park, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, and on the other by the beautiful peninsula. Church Point is a suburb in the […]

The post Church Point House, Sydney, NSW, Australia appeared first on The Cool Hunter.

Read More »
HQ Magazine

The Callaho Dream

On this cold and wintery day, we all need something heart-warming . This video from Callaho Warmblood Sport Horses has really put a smile on our faces. Enjoy this insight into the Callaho dream: The post The Callaho Dream appeared first on HQ Magazine. The Callaho Dream

Read More »
Lifestyle

Les Mills Fitness Club, Auckland City, New Zealand

Last year, after having been in business for more than 50 years, the New Zealand fitness powerhouse Les Mills completed the design of an additional facility across from its flagship location on Victoria Street in Auckland City. The addition is a thoroughly re-configured industrial building that now houses three new

Read More »
HQ Magazine

White House Stud and Equestrian Centre

HQ caught up with James White of White House Stud and Equestrian Centre. Check out this yard, and James’s CV!! Tell us about your yard.  White House Stud and Equestrian Centre is a small yard consisting of 16 normal stables of 3.5m by 3.5m and two broodmare boxes of 3.5m by 7m. We have a… Read More »White House Stud and Equestrian Centre

The post White House Stud and Equestrian Centre appeared first on HQ Magazine.

Read More »
HQ Magazine

HQ Lockdown Guide – free until 1st June

The HQ Lockdown Guide is free for download from the following link until the 1st June. Get yours today! https://bit.ly/hq-eqldg The guide contains articles on getting back to riding, the power of mindfulness, the technique of visualisation, wonderful mental coaching advice from Linda Hennings of Forging Ahead and much much more! It is jam-packed with… Read More »HQ Lockdown Guide – free until 1st June

The post HQ Lockdown Guide – free until 1st June appeared first on HQ Magazine.

Read More »
Lifestyle

Casa RJ, Mantua, Italy

Sometimes we find ourselves contemplating our preferences. Or, let’s be truthful here, that’s all we ever do. We keep re-evaluating our preconceived notions and questioning whether we still like what we used to like, or have we discovered something that has changed our earlier views. One of the juxtapositions we

Read More »