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Mukluk
Oct. 5, 2012, 10:35 PM
This is from 2008

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stEgqgnbC4M

Is this still preferred?

What is your opinion?

rabicon
Oct. 6, 2012, 12:12 AM
Yes still preferred. IMO I don't like it. It has changed so much over the years to wogging and tropping.

VaqueroToro
Oct. 6, 2012, 12:16 AM
I'm going to assume you mean the riding style.

Pretty much -- riding starts around 1:03. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TjF1v4foBqI

(it's the 2012 equivalent)

In my not so humble opinion, I think Ranch Horse Pleasure is A LOT lovelier to watch; it doesn't make me cringe anyway.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dp_bFVGbVA4

ETA: I find it amusing that the WP rider's "victory lap" was more like a victory circle -- it would have taken far too long to get around the arena to the awarding committee at that pace.

findeight
Oct. 6, 2012, 11:40 AM
Basically, yes, still what you see pinning on top...although the 2 that did pin on top actually did have a 2 beat "trot" and 3 beat "canter". Some of the others added alot of beats:rolleyes:

Back when I was still in Western they started the "poll must be above withers" farce...you can see how bravely the judges enforce that after all this time (decades here)

However, if that's what you like, you buy an appropriately bred and built horse that hit the ground taking short pitty pat steps and a natural low carriage? I actually have no problem with it.

And I like the bling and the clothes.

Mukluk
Oct. 6, 2012, 11:54 AM
It seems that the majority of people dislike (some very strongly) what western pleasure has become. Yet if that is what everyone is doing in the show ring, it must be what the judges are looking for. I hope that in the future, the current WP style will become a distant memory and the horses will move like horses again. I would like to pick the brain of a WP judge and have them explain what they are looking for. What would happen if you had a lovely natural moving horse in a WP class collected but with impulsion and a real 3 beat canter- would they pin last? OK rant over.

rabicon
Oct. 6, 2012, 01:28 PM
Yes more than likely in today's wp they will pin last unless everyone else is doing it or the whole group was a train wreck.

propspony
Oct. 6, 2012, 03:57 PM
Yes more than likely in today's wp they will pin last unless everyone else is doing it or the whole group was a train wreck.

There was one judge at Scottsdale last week that was rewarding the slightly more forward/more natural movers. I wanted to go hug them. So, there are some that are trying.

49'er
Oct. 6, 2012, 05:53 PM
Scottsdale....Arab or AQHA?

propspony
Oct. 6, 2012, 09:14 PM
AQHA The Scottsdale Classic held last week. Not sure which judge it was, but I was glad to see it.

Lori
Oct. 6, 2012, 09:24 PM
I really like the Ranch Horse Pleasure. :) To me, that is what western pleasure should look like.

rabicon
Oct. 6, 2012, 09:45 PM
I can't believe it. That great I thought you meant Arab at first but if it was aqha I'm really surprised. Good job judge

sandsarita
Oct. 6, 2012, 11:57 PM
I experienced just last weekend two judges that used a good mover over the untrue movers (ie no true 3 beat lope or 2 beat jog). I was asked to fill the amateur and junior western pleasure class on my AQHA hunter mare. I don't think I have had a western saddle on her for anything in over 6 months. I taught her to "jog" in the warm-up pen and then asked her to settle into a nice canter that was really relaxed. I ended up second in both classes under both judges, picking up some points. No, she is not a western horse, and I didn't try to imitate one either. But she went around relaxed, happy, with high quality movement and an appropriate stride length for her body. And it was rewarded by both of the AQHA judges I showed to last weekend.

RoyalPrestige
Oct. 7, 2012, 10:47 AM
Western pleasure horses were once meant to be horses that looked like a dead broke, safe, anyone-can-ride-it kind of horse, and anyone could take it out to work. In the mean time, it people equated 'slow' with 'safe' and then it became a 'my horse is slower and safer than yours' contest and those horses were being rewarded.

I will say that they have become a lot better over the past few years though which makes me happy. I'd rather see a horse move out freely and naturally than become a peanut-pusher. Sometimes I want to become a judge myself just so I can have a hand in moving it back to where it was suppose to be.

rabicon
Oct. 7, 2012, 11:08 AM
I'm glad maybe there's a change on the horizon. In my area they still reward the not natural IMO movers.

propspony
Oct. 7, 2012, 11:14 AM
Oh... it's still pretty awful in general. But... even within the breed community people are getting sick of it. So, maybe there is hope! :-)

saddleup
Oct. 7, 2012, 02:59 PM
I show in breed shows, but refuse to do Western Pleasure. It is possible for my gelding to move like that, but I won't do it. It's painful for me to watch it, and it's not the way he wants to go.

I show in Horsemanship and Western Riding. Both allow a faster pace.

I cringe when I watch the WP class. There's one horse at my barn who is a natural WP horse. Out in the field on his own he'll move at the same slow, but free-moving, cadence. It's beautiful to watch. Not surprisingly, he wins a lot.

But he's the exception.

I'm starting to work on the Ranch Horse Pleasure classes. Have yet to show, but I love the patterns.

kateh
Oct. 7, 2012, 03:46 PM
Would you say that the ranch/stock horse pleasure classes have horses that are (or could be) actually working ranch horses?

I'm just curious since I ride hunters and there's usually a trainwreck whenever anyone wants to talk about whether most show hunters could actually chase some hounds.

RoyalPrestige
Oct. 7, 2012, 04:36 PM
Would you say that the ranch/stock horse pleasure classes have horses that are (or could be) actually working ranch horses?

I'm just curious since I ride hunters and there's usually a trainwreck whenever anyone wants to talk about whether most show hunters could actually chase some hounds.

I think so. It comes down to the individual horse and what they have been exposed to, but I know horses who have been used for ranch horse pleasure classes that go home the next day and work cattle.

Showbizz
Oct. 8, 2012, 01:01 PM
This is from 2008

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stEgqgnbC4M

Is this still preferred?

What is your opinion?

I do think it's still preferred, though I don't show AQHA.

I think this horse is exceptional. I love the jog as she enters, though on the rail the horse should have been bumped up just a hair to keep the cadence. I thought the lope looked natural and effortless.

While I think lopes have improved, jogs have suffered. So many horses could have better jogs if the rider would just bump them up a tad to ensure it's true-ness. And some just are bred to be great lopers these days and not natural joggers.

Burbank
Oct. 8, 2012, 07:43 PM
the op's video the horse when entering had a nice jog, very pretty and head at a decent level, also the horse appeared to keep the head at about a 45 deg angle and not behind the verticle

the lope was not bad and better than the 2012 horse but the head was starting to get a tad low

its not for everyone but many horses are bred to do just that and not all have to be forced into it

Golden Pony
Oct. 9, 2012, 10:05 AM
My first thought when seeing the canter on these WP horses - is it LAME?

VaqueroToro
Oct. 9, 2012, 11:33 AM
the op's video the horse when entering had a nice jog, very pretty and head at a decent level, also the horse appeared to keep the head at about a 45 deg angle and not behind the verticle

the lope was not bad and better than the 2012 horse but the head was starting to get a tad low

its not for everyone but many horses are bred to do just that and not all have to be forced into it



My first thought when seeing the canter on these WP horses - is it LAME?

The frame up shouldn't be the only thing they're looking for. If the gait itself is all screwy or incorrect, that shouldn't be pinned. I guess that's my beef with these winners is that the judges seem to be cutting the horse off at the legs and not paying any attention to either the cadence or the expression of the animal. On some of these, the horse looks to me like it's trying to find a spot to start scratching and roll.

On both videos there are visible spots where the lope waffles back and forth between a four beat and a three beat. The horse is using its neck as a pivot point instead of reaching up and under with its back legs.

It's amusing that you can dig out old videos of what AQHA judges are supposed to look for, and the horses below look anything but lame. They're engaged, correctly moving, nicely framed, etc.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVZfC-uGMOo

Burbank
Oct. 9, 2012, 06:07 PM
Vanquero, the head and neck are not the only thing to look for, however when you have heard the harping on WP horses for the peanut dragging and behind the verticle they are worth mentioning, things are changing not as fast as needed but they are

I do think that the jog before the class and the lope during the victory lap were better than in the class, the horse was moving relaxed and was not a bad mover, not a hunter but a western pleasure horse

Burbank
Oct. 9, 2012, 06:13 PM
oh and the last video is a great older educational video the gray is my personal favorite, the whole video is very much worth it.

Renae
Oct. 9, 2012, 08:35 PM
Just for contrast, western pleasure in other breeds:

Saddlebred
http://youtu.be/8iRByJUp0EY

Morgan
http://youtu.be/bQrGj_HudFY

Half-Arabian
http://youtu.be/YuGgV7aOyvI

Arabian
http://youtu.be/w6vg2-JUbcE

RoyalPrestige
Oct. 10, 2012, 08:09 PM
I have never owned or showed an arab, but they are my favorite horses to watch when it comes to western pleasure classes. They are still slow movers, but it looks so much prettier and pleasurable to ride than QHs (I do show them). I remember I went to the U.S. Arabian Nationals, and some of the wp classes asked for a hand gallop...the horses most certainly could move forward! <- That is what the class was meant to be like in the first place; to show that yes I have an easy going horse, but it can move out and work (i.e cattle) if I ask it to. I wish stock type pleasure classes asked for things like that more.

Mel0309
Oct. 11, 2012, 05:14 AM
Just for contrast, western pleasure in other breeds:

Saddlebred
http://youtu.be/8iRByJUp0EY

Morgan
http://youtu.be/bQrGj_HudFY

Half-Arabian
http://youtu.be/YuGgV7aOyvI

Arabian
http://youtu.be/w6vg2-JUbcE

Maybe pretty to watch but personally I wouldn't want to ride any of these out on a ranch either. Fast boucy trots, lopes that look like if you let them go they would run off, and lots of noses behind the verticle. I love a good AQHA pleasure horse that moves from behind with 2 beat jogs and 3 beat lopes.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=mDeO-XwCOjs

May not be everyones cup of tea but I love it!

mvp
Oct. 11, 2012, 10:32 AM
IMO, the mare looks nice when she's not on the rail. The job an lope there are a little more forward.

She does wear her ears pretty well, and the rider did a nice job of putting her next to a "worse" horse--the bay behind her is faster, shorter strided, tail-wringing, nose pointed in to the rail at the lope for the "driving with one foot on the gas, one on the brake" effect.

Flash44
Oct. 14, 2012, 03:58 PM
I do think it's still preferred, though I don't show AQHA.

I think this horse is exceptional. I love the jog as she enters, though on the rail the horse should have been bumped up just a hair to keep the cadence. I thought the lope looked natural and effortless.

While I think lopes have improved, jogs have suffered. So many horses could have better jogs if the rider would just bump them up a tad to ensure it's true-ness. And some just are bred to be great lopers these days and not natural joggers.

Ditto - that mare is just exquisite. I also like her jog up the center line better than her rail jog. The horses that can truly go slow and also do a true 3 beat canter without slinging their heads are not numerous. The WP judges are less forgiving than the hunter judges wrt manners - they like a horse to have consistent cadence and a quiet expression and it is important.

monstrpony
Oct. 15, 2012, 08:30 AM
I have a QH gelding who was bred back when they were well into breeding horses that moved that way, but hadn't quite yet totally ruined a fraction of the breed ;). Still, he was started with some pretty heavy-handed WP training, and has the scars, both mental and physical, to prove it. He's a big, slow-legged horse, and I tell people that if I'd had him 45 years ago when I was doing up-in-the-bridle WP in California, I'd be famous today. I rode him in a horsemanship clinic two years ago (in the two-rein, but well up in the bridle) and had a well-known warmblood breeder admire his canter. He can jog tracking up. (I've never schooled him as a modern WP horse; his past 12 years have been influenced by dressage and Vaquero horsemanship)

Alas, at 20 years old, his hocks are shot.

What's been done to a large part of the QH breed is nothing short of a crime.

baylady7
Oct. 15, 2012, 03:17 PM
"I was asked to fill the amateur and junior western pleasure class..."

Is this legal???

propspony
Oct. 15, 2012, 04:04 PM
yes to the amateur if it's a "moving up" in class. So if you're a novice, you could certainly fill a regular amateur class, if you're open... not so much. As for the Jr WP, as long as your horse is a jr, *your* status doesn't matter.

nikelodeon79
Oct. 15, 2012, 04:05 PM
the op's video the horse when entering had a nice jog, very pretty and head at a decent level,
I thought the horse looked good upon entering, too. Then the class started... and everything went downhill.


its not for everyone but many horses are bred to do just that and not all have to be forced into it
I guess my biggest observation was that when she was asked for the "super slow" gaits her ears would go straight back. IMO this horse does NOT look happy.

ezduzit
Oct. 16, 2012, 09:46 AM
Bear in mind that the show ring has no connection to reality or usefulness!:D

Given that: you would love my western Morgan on the ranch. A nice, easy CANTER when asked and a nice lengthened jog. But a real 'range rover' wouldn't be appreciated in the show ring.


Maybe pretty to watch but personally I wouldn't want to ride any of these out on a ranch either. Fast boucy trots, lopes that look like if you let them go they would run off, and lots of noses behind the verticle. I love a good AQHA pleasure horse that moves from behind with 2 beat jogs and 3 beat lopes.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=mDeO-XwCOjs

May not be everyones cup of tea but I love it!

sparkette
Oct. 16, 2012, 12:03 PM
I've heard that AQHA is changing the trope to a 3 beat. Keyword is heard.

mvp
Oct. 16, 2012, 01:08 PM
oh and the last video is a great older educational video the gray is my personal favorite, the whole video is very much worth it.

A helpful video. They were also honest-- wrapping the legs in different colored polos let everyone see the pattern of footfall in each gait.

I like the white/grey horse's lope and his frame in that the best. That horse has truly lifted his shoulders. But perhaps only his lope is good? I'd like to see the horse at all three gaits and transitions. If I were training horses to do this, I'd make the grey horse's "uphill" frame my ideal. Is that so wrong?

Burbank
Oct. 16, 2012, 09:55 PM
mel, the arab mare that I had the pleasure to show for a while had a lovely slow jog and a slow even cadenced lope, she was top 10 twice at US Nationals

she also was used for checking cattle fence in New Mexico to keep her legged up and to keep her mind fresh and out of the ring

and she could go on the bit and show dressage training level and then go directly to the western pleasure ring (she could prob have done better without me)

she was my ideal, I miss her

mvp I love the grey in that video, he looks like a joy

Bethe Mounce
Oct. 17, 2012, 12:29 AM
First off, I love the bling of the gal's outfit. Yeah---the blingier the better! ;-) The jog was too much of a shuffle..horse did not appear to pick up his feet, I kept thinking he was going to trip and fall as he traveled on his forehand the entire time. I loved the loop in her reins, horse stayed with his rider and vice versa nicely...........however...........the lope.......was never a true 3 beat gait. The horse, because he was producing an artificial gait, stands a pretty good chance of not staying sound as his career moves forward. She is a lovely rider, no doubt, she presented the horse nicely in the class. The horse just looked lame behind.

Quite a number of years ago AQHA sent a video to all of its judges saying this is how a western pleasure horse should be judged and if a judge wasn't happy with this video, to turn in their card.......and........at AQHA horse shows, the announcer was to say, when it was time to lope, "lope with forward motion." I was thrilled with this. For a period of time the lopes appeared to have improved with no artificial gait being produced. The peanut roller affect was diminishing as were other less than stellar "schooling" practices at shows.

Alas, it seems to be returning. A lope is 3 beat, and should be comfortable, it will be a swaying motion, not a back and forth rubbing of riders seat in saddle but a true scoop of the pelvis.

Truly connected western pleasure horses from back to front are hard to find. I just wish the western pleasure trainers and riders would not keep going after these artificial gaits, or rather, I wish the judges would stop rewarding 4 beat lopes....ok, off my soapbox and rant. ;-) Merely my thoughts based on my experiences in the western arena. Carry on guys. Great thread.