So my boyfriend and I were having a debate last night about over-reaching/over-tracking/tracking-up (whatever your choice of lingo) and losing shoes. We come from two different disciplines, he being a reining/starter of young horses/saddle bronc rider and I a hunter/jumper rider with a smidge of dressage lessons thrown in there over the many years. He manages a barn and we were discussing some of the horses in the barn having a bad/consistent habit of pulling shoes. All of the horses aside from one share a common farrier. Three of the four horses have really lovely naturally tracking-up gaits while the fourth… how he manages to pull shoes astounds me personally as I would describe his movement as “shuffley”.
Now, what the conversation came down to was two things; 1) boyfriend says the farrier is at fault and that the “point-break” of the hoof should be altered to allow for a smoother/quicker take-off of the front hoof so as to prevent heel clipping/shoe pulling. I will admit that his knowledge of blacksmithing/farrier work exceeds mine so I was at a bit of a disadvantage on this point. 2) We then talked about the differences in desirable qualities of movement in our sports, boyfriend saying his sport desires a short/efficient/powerful stride where over-tracking is considered to be more of a hindrance where as I said we (sorry to speak for the sport as a whole) value a horse, especially in upper level dressage and jumpers, that has a natural build that promotes really tracking-up underneath themselves naturally. We also talked about the differences in movement related to the front end in which the differences in desirable movement related to each sport is more obvious.
So…. Let me invite you into our debate, what do you all think? Add anything you like to either point. Back me up, back him up or tell me we’re both crazy if you think so. I am just curious to know what everyone else thinks.
If the breakover is too slow in the fronts (ie: toe is left long which is customary in some disciplines of farriers) and the shoes are set back normally or even too far, it will result in an over-reaching pull off. A long toe or a shoe set back for a false break over, or left too long because they simply don't fit is a good recipe for a good tracking horse to yank a shoe.
I'm not a farrier, don't play one on TV. Just my experience.
A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.
I have one very short-coupled, small-bodied horse who is a very "slinky" mover at the walk and even if he's just loafing along he has a 6-8" overstep. When he's really working it is much longer. Dressage judges love this.
However, he will pull a shoe from time to time by over-reaching. He wears special shoes because of an old injury--aluminum NB with a 2 degree wedge. I also use pour-in pads with these shoes to keep his frog in contact with something. He wears plain old shoes behind, or is sometimes barefoot behind in the winter if we're just riding inside. Yes, his front feet are not ideal and this is almost certainly part of the shoe-pulling problem, not to mention the injury he had. But the amount of changing we've been able to do over the past 2.5 years is fairly minimal. He just has below-average front feet. Conversely, his back feet are GORGEOUS.
Since he's going well, moves nicely, and is sound with his current regimen, my farrier and I have declined to monkey around with things too much. So he wears rubber bell boots all the time, except during dressage tests. Shoes stay on, everybody's happy.
east central Illinois and working north to the 'burbs
Could be the farrier, could be the horse, could be the rider. As is ever true, It Depends. In order to offer any really worthwhile advice, more information is necessary. Information such as type of horse(s), age, fitness, conformation, job description/discipline, etc; rider(s) size/weight/ability; how frequently the horse is ridden and for how long, arena surface composition and maintenance, where shoes are cast, and when; type of shoes used, etc, etc.
east central Illinois and working north to the 'burbs
Originally Posted by Addison
Rick…would you please describe the difference between tracking up and over reaching?
In my world, "tracking up" refers to a horse who plants its hind foot squarely in the hoof print of its companion fore. "Over reaching generally refers an interference problem where the toe of the hind hoof hits the back of the fore hoof on the same side. This can occur anywhere from the lowest point of the bulbs of the heels, upwards into the back of the front pastern. In some instances 'overreach' may refer to a horse whose back hoof lands in front of the imprint of the fore hoof on the same side. IOW, in that instance it refers to stride length and not an interference. Big Lick Walking horses often exhibit this stride type. In many breeds/disciplines, it is referred to as an 'over stride' rather than 'over reaching'.
Overreaching/forging/scalping/speedycutting/crossfiring/etc are all gait interference issues with several potential causes. The first three are seen predominantly in 'in-line' gaited horses and almost never in 'passing' gaited horses.
(extra credit: why? )
I agree with the first part but not the second...........
So do you think that a horse can land it's hind on or in front of the front footprint while the front foot still occupies that footprint due to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle and whether or not Schrodinger's cat is dead or alive at the end of a dressage test?
or is it that "up" means "on" and "over" means "past?"