Lunging at shows

emfen1305

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This is based on a comment I read on another thread about lunging in between phases (I didn't want to hijack the thread). As some of you may know I have issues with my cob and his quirky drop shoulder spinning. I seem to have pinned it down a bit to a bit of excess mental energy because he hasn't done it if he's been in the field/lunged before riding. I was decked again on Saturday morning at home first thing trying to record my online dressage test (albeit it was pathetic fall, I should have stayed on and I did stay on the second time). I have a few local dressage and showing shows coming up (at the same venue but in different parts) and wondered what the etiquette of lunging in the warm up was?

For the showing shows it will be easier as we have the whole of the grass area so I can take him away from the designated warm up but for dressage we all warm up in a slightly bigger than 20x40 arena. I have checked the rules and it doesn't say no lunging but I will email the venue to ask but I wondered what other people thought about people lunging in warm up arenas? I would make sure we stuck to a small area, it's just to let him have his silly moment which is usually just some little broncs and a spook and I am hoping if I can get it out of him on the lunge then I might have more of a chance of staying on. I have asked for the earliest time slot for the dressage so there will be less people likely to be in the warm up.

Other than than the new saddle is coming today, my friend has lent me a suede seat saver and I have ordered some new sticky bum jods and a balance strap so fingers crossed!
 

milliepops

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almost all venues round me specify no lunging on their (affiliated) schedules.
I'm afraid in a normal sized arena I would complain if someone started lunging while there were horses being ridden in there. I have shared big arenas at livery when someone has lunged at one end but there was only the 2 of us in there and we knew each other... I'm afraid I wouldn't feel the same at a show.

I would contact the venue to ask because some places simply don't allow lunging on their surfaces full stop.
Could you get there really early and then if permitted give him a quick spin round before anyone else gets started? Or lunge him at home before setting off?
 

littlefluffball

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Shows around here there are usually horses being lunged all over the shop! never in the warm up ring but just quietly out the way. When I walk around the horseboxes it is not unusualy to see horses being lunged in various small areas...

i suppose it would depend on the set up style of the venue whether there was a suitable quiet place to go and lunge
 

Shay

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I saw that thread too - and was slightly surprised at the advice. Lots of places around us don't allow lunging anywhere on the ground for safety reasons. Certainly not in the warm up area. You might be able to lunge in a quiet back corner of the area used for parking - but if there was a complaint you would have to stop.

As Millie Pops says - ask the venue first.
 

conniegirl

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Showing the etiquette is that you don't lunge in the main warm up arena, you take yourself to a quiet area of the lorry parks and do it there.
I've lunged and longriened young horses in lorry parks with no problem at all many times.

If you lunge in the warm up area you will get complaints.
 

be positive

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I agree with mp that it is not going to be allowed in most venues and that while he is having his funny few minutes it may be unfair on others who are riding, I would lunge him at home before leaving and hope that gets rid of the energy or get there before anyone else needs to use the warm up if the venue allows.
The other thing is in my experience getting into the habit of allowing him to buck and spook on the lunge can become a habit that is hard to get out of and can encourage them to 'need' to get it out of their system and a vicious cycle continues, far better to tackle it so he can get working under you and use his energy in a more productive way although I do appreciate it can be easy to say and less easy to do when they drop you regularly.
 

ihatework

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I saw that thread too - and was slightly surprised at the advice. Lots of places around us don't allow lunging anywhere on the ground for safety reasons. Certainly not in the warm up area. You might be able to lunge in a quiet back corner of the area used for parking - but if there was a complaint you would have to stop.

As Millie Pops says - ask the venue first.
The post if I am thinking of the right one is affiliated Eventing. You usually have acres of field out Eventing and it’s very common to have multiple horses on the lunge on the outskirts of the lorry park, or sometimes in the warm up depending on how big it is.

However for the OP, I’m afraid no way is it appropriate to lunge in most show centre warm up areas.
 

emfen1305

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Thanks all for your responses - I did think this would be the case as I am not sure how I would feel about someone lunging a silly horse whilst I was trying to warm up so being a bit hypocritical really. It's not a problem for showing as I can go behind the parking or other parts of the field away from everyone else but I agree in a normal arena it isn't a good idea.

My plan was to get there at 9am as the first slot is 10 (which will hopefully be me) so I thought I might be able to get 5-10 minutes before anyone else turned up - this is what I have positioned it as to the venue but also agree with BP, i don't want to be lunging every time I go out or getting him into stupid habits on the lunge, I feel silly enough just thinking about it but really struggling with my confidence out and about. I don't really have anyone else than can get on him before me either to ride it out of him so I am just thinking about my options..

ETA: Lunging at home very much a possibility too, the venue is a 15 min hack away so could always warm up at home and hack straight there so might try that for the first show in a couple of weeks. Our classes for the showing shows are in the afternoon too so considered turning him out for a couple of hours in the morning rather than keeping him in.
 
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milliepops

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ETA: Lunging at home very much a possibility too, the venue is a 15 min hack away so could always warm up at home and hack straight there so might try that for the first show in a couple of weeks. Our classes for the showing shows are in the afternoon too so considered turning him out for a couple of hours in the morning rather than keeping him in.
both sound like good plans. I think if you can have a proactive plan to address his high jinx rather than just trying to avoid them then you'll develop your confidence too. :)
 

splashgirl45

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lunging a horse who is going to bronc will disturb the arena surface unless it is one which is regularly used for jumping. as an illuistration...my friend was riding her horse in an indoor school and the owner came in with their young horse and started lunging. it was playing up and upset my friends horse who stood up and went over backwards on top of her breaking her pelvis, this horse had never reared before and hasnt since and is not a nutty horse normally .....as others have said lunge him at home before going to the venue and then put your brave pants on and ride in the warm up with confidence...:)
 

D66

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Does the venue have a walker you could hire? We did this once when my daughter was nervous about competing a new horse. Half an hour trudging round made him quite "kick-a-long", at which point DD's nerves evaporated. Might not do it for eventing but it could work for SJ or dressage.
 

Goldenstar

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Op I have a horse who was a bit naughty to get on at a show .
We lunged him at home then got to the show in good time and lead him about then put him back on the lorry and tacked up then a few mins more leading and on him he was fine like this .
He’s fine now .
 

emfen1305

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It is just a normal livery yard and just runs shows and competitions twice a month. The warm up is in what is usually the jumping arena, it can be quite “busy” - it is next to a road, another arena which liveries use on dressage day and a field with some quite excitable horses but I know that this isn’t the reason he is being an idiot because he did it here at home in the arena he has been in 100+ times, he just uses it as an excuse! It can come at any time too, I can be in there for 10 minutes and not having any issues then all of a sudden he coils like a spring and I’m off within a minute! I could really do with someone to ride him for that time and then I get on him so he gets out of the habit but don’t want to risk hurting anyone else (he is very dirty!)

Honestly I have stopped riding him at the weekend in the morning because my confidence just disappeared but tomorrow I have a bit fitting consultant coming so will need to ride first thing, I was planning on lunging him before getting on but wondering if I should just bite the bullet and try and preempt the behaviour to correct it..
 

Fiona

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I really feel for you OH, hopefully you can find a plan that works for you, and your boy remains sensible. At least shows on grass will be much easier.

I attend a kids SJ show every week with a lovely indoor but v small warmup (30 x 20 ish) and the last two times I've been there a lady has come into the warmup with other ponies already there and has started to lunge in one end.

Completely dangerous :(

Fiona
 

emfen1305

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I agree it’s dangerous, not sure what I was thinking really I think I’m just starting to get nervous so was thinking of some contingency plans, there’s no guarantee that lunging would even work, I’ve never tried it so it’s not like I know that’s the answer, I just thought if I could tire him out a bit he might not be so bothered about pulling his move!
 

emfen1305

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Can you chuck him out the night before (I used to do the opposite for oomph!)
We’ve never turned out here overnight and he shares the field with one other one so I’d have to see if the other owner was ok with trying that, I’d be happier for a bit of a lazier dressage and staying on than the current option!
 

sportsmansB

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I really feel for you OH, hopefully you can find a plan that works for you, and your boy remains sensible. At least shows on grass will be much easier.

I attend a kids SJ show every week with a lovely indoor but v small warmup (30 x 20 ish) and the last two times I've been there a lady has come into the warmup with other ponies already there and has started to lunge in one end.

Completely dangerous :(

Fiona
I noticed this when I was there last week Fiona and I was a bit surprised!!

OP I would lunge the legs off the wee sod before you leave home. Don't feel like you have to try and 'catch him at it' or anything like that - manage him, keep him tired, feed him little, and make as sure as you can that it doesn't happen. Its more important for him, and for your safety, than trying to teach him a lesson when he does do it, as that might not work anyway.
 

emfen1305

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I noticed this when I was there last week Fiona and I was a bit surprised!!

OP I would lunge the legs off the wee sod before you leave home. Don't feel like you have to try and 'catch him at it' or anything like that - manage him, keep him tired, feed him little, and make as sure as you can that it doesn't happen. Its more important for him, and for your safety, than trying to teach him a lesson when he does do it, as that might not work anyway.
Very true, the likelihood is I will just fall off when he does do it anyway so have gained nothing and taken another knock!

I’m going to lunge at home before all events as luckily won’t be travelling further than an hour to anything anyway. Will test tomorrow!
 

Auslander

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I used to have one who was very hot for the first 10 minutes after I got on, and he used to turn himself inside out in warm ups - so I used to unload him a couple of miles away, get on and trot the git all the way to the venue! He soon learned to knuckle down and work nicely when I got on him!
 

emfen1305

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So today was a good test. Saddle fitting did not go well so still in my old saddle which is fine, turns out if I ride properly the saddle is fine. Had the bitting consultant out this morning and I needed to ride - morning is prime "pull the moves" time because he wants to just go out in the field so I did lunge him 20 minutes before she showed up and didn't let him be too silly (he was silly but I pulled him straight up and made him walk) and it worked, no silly moves but still got enough out of him to check the different bits.

So a question for anyone still reading, do I lunge him on Saturday morning before travelling him to the farm ride or will the travelling take it out of him? It's about an hour away and he will be in a trailer..
 

Red-1

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I would lunge first, but not round and round mindlessly. I would make sure he works sensibly, use transitions and transitions within the pace and make sure he bends correctly.

That way he will have his head low, be breathing correctly, be thinking and it is all likely to be successful.
 

Tiddlypom

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Do you turn him out before riding him in the morning? A couple of hours in the field first might settle him.

I hacked my horse about 3 miles to and from the local RC shows for a whole season before I got a trailer. It warmed him (and me!) up beautifully. It was a shock the next season working out just how much longer we needed to warm up when we trailered there!
 

emfen1305

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No I usually ride first thing. Think it seems to be with when things are out of his routine because I don’t usually put him out before I go anywhere so think I will turn out before the showing shows because my classes are all after lunch! For dressage might have to go down the lunging and warming up at home
 

Fiona

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So a question for anyone still reading, do I lunge him on Saturday morning before travelling him to the farm ride or will the travelling take it out of him? It's about an hour away and he will be in a trailer..
Why not lunge, it won't do him any harm and will make you feel more confident in his behavior.

This time last year, we were still lunging our son's welsh pony before every outing, now I never do it until she has had 3+ days off beforehand.

Fiona
 

Pinkvboots

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I used to have a horse that was a real handful at shows, I learnt that turning out at night really helped so all bathing cleaning was done on the morning, I would lunge at most show those that I couldn't I would walk about as much as possible, rescue remedy for horse and rider found oxyshot calmer also helped.
 
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