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Long reining, long lining, ground driving or what

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  • Long reining, long lining, ground driving or what

    Lots of stuff about this on the boards over the years and also lots of explanations of the difference.

    The thing is though Long Reining, Long Lining and Ground Driving are all exactly the same.

    Regrettably there's folks who don't seem to know that though.

    To be absolutely correct, there's only Long Reining and Short Reining.

    First the terminology, Long Reining: As soon as you put reins from the horse to your hand when you are standing on the ground some distance from the horse then its Long Reining.

    Short Reining: is when you are on the ground with short reins to your horse and you stand at the side of your horse at its shoulder and work the reins with one over the horses's back.

    So why is it called lots of different things? I'll give a full and proper explanation and so folks will truly know and not fall into the trap that others have "of thinking they know"

    And trust me this is a subject I do indeed know about.

    So here's a go at further explaining and also with how and why the confusion:

    With some in the driving fraternity its called Long Lining or Ground Driving when its done walking behind the horse as if you were carriage driving (but without the vehicle.)

    This terminology originates from the farming community or heavy horse folks and its there that this terminology is always still used in Europe. And you may be interested to know that in that community even if they Ground Drive on a circle - then they still call it Ground Driving or Long Lining.

    And which one they call it tends to be a regional divide thing: North and South respectively. So go to Somerset and its Long Lining. Go to Yorkshire and its Ground Driving, though the more travelled and refined farmer in Yorkshire would call it Long Lining.

    Then that terminology crept into the light harness horse fraternity and purely because as carriage driving expertise declined and trainers have been limited, folks have taken their light harness horses to a guy who has heavy agricultural horses and as far as everyone is concerned he's "long-lining" or "ground driving". And because he's training their horse to carriage drive and he's doing basic stuff only and probably has about 6 weeks to do it in, the horse is only ever long-reined with the handler walking immediately behind.

    Then before you know what has happened folks that know no better think their horse has been "ground driven" or "Long Lined" and it seems can even persuade themselves there's differences.

    But trust me, there's not!

    Said agricultural horse trainer doesn't need to train this horse to do anything fancy so his ground work will just be to get the horse with a vehicle then away. However if he's training his own light harness horse - say to drive tandem to go to the hunt - as was the traditional way, then he'd be wanting it VERY well schooled and trained and to a higher level and he'd also do on a circle and teach it to shoulder in and a lot more. But because of his upbringing and culture he'll still say he's either Long Lining or Ground Driving.

    However the proper terminology is Long Reining and its a form of Advanced Lunging and in many parts of Europe - to confuse things even more, it was called Advanced Lunging in the early days. That though has dropped out of useage because folks who really can Advanced Lunge or Long Rein want to distinguish what they do from those who merely have a horse running round in circles attached one line to a cavesson.

    So again the terminology Long Reining is always used by the traditionalists and those who know the correct definitions and don't have the regional or agricultural culture. So you NEVER hear Prince Philip saying anything other than to Long Rein - whether its in a straight line or in a circle or for riding or driving. My parents and grandparents were the same because even though they were from the north and from a farming community, they were travelled and educated and a little more 'refined' and they trained riding horses and top level coaching horses and hackney horses in harness. You would NEVER say to a refined gentleman that his horse had been Ground Driven because even long ago it had associations with basic farm training by an uneducated man.

    I hope this explanation helps but if there's anything I've not made clear, then do ask.

    Regrettably IMO the history of driving and the old equitation skills and knowledge and language are being lost and I am delighted to share it with others.

    Even in the USA though there's cogniscence of the fact it’s the same thing and carriage drivers frequently disagree which is what.
    If you look at this link, you’ll see a book: Introduction to Long Reins "Long reining, long lining or ground driving" a training technique by different names. http://www.wildhorsebooks.com/Light%20Driving.htm

  • #2
    And double lunging is still long lining?


    • Original Poster

      Yes indeed it is. Though that isn't a term ever used in the UK


      • #4
        I always associated ground driving as sort of plodding along behind them and long lining as a more advanced trainer's schooling.

        And who decided to add the term double lunging! LOL I kind of thought we had enough terminology to cover it!
        Kanoe Godby
        See, I was raised by wolves and am really behind the 8-ball on diplomatic issue resolution.


        • Original Poster

          I think its one of those invented by someone who doesn't know what they're actually doing anyway.

          I remember being well amused by a posting here with (what I considered) an hilarious attempt at explaining the differences with ground driving and long lining.

          I could smell the bovine excrement from way over the water


          • #6
            To add another term I have heard is double or long lounging--Sound like standing in one spot to me. That came from a German gal--perhaps it is a spelling thing, language thing.

            Thomas--I am one of those who differieniate long lining from ground driving based upon learning about long lining or what you seem to referring to as short lining. This is how it was splained to me by a trainer. Could this perhaps be a USA vs old school Europe thing? You know how we have taken the very British and proper way of things and relaxed them in our own. Damn Yanks!!!

            Your explanation is great and as usual very informative. Thanks for sharing.


            • #7
              Thomas, you're my *Hero Of The Day*!

              What a great post! Now ALL I ever have to know/say is that I'm long reining or short reining. And since I see no reason to short rein at this point - I will only be long reining. It doesn't get any easier than that!

              Thomas, I'm going to have zillions of questions as I learn, but I sincerely hope you will be here to make every lesson this easy and clear!

              You gave me a grin on a very sad day. I had to pts my wonderful 11 yo. kitty this morning. He was a dog kind of cat which was great because I wasn't a cat person when I adopted him. I am now, and Dodger started the journey.

              North Carolina, USA
              "Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." -Groucho Marx


              • Original Poster

                I'm very sorry to hear about your cat.

                I hope this cheers you up. It sums up cats to me:



                • Original Poster

                  Originally posted by Cartfall View Post
                  Could this perhaps be a USA vs old school Europe thing? You know how we have taken the very British and proper way of things and relaxed them in our own. Damn Yanks!!!
                  You're asking me about the logic of American language

                  Yeh, that will be right

                  Your explanation is great and as usual very informative. Thanks for sharing.
                  You're very welcome. Susan says I don't half know some rubbish and stuff that no-one wants or needs to know!

                  I'm great in trivia quizzes though!


                  • #10
                    The double lunging that I am familiar with is more like longlining with draw reins. The reins are attached either between the front legs or the rings on the surcingle, then run thru the bit and back to the surcingle rings, low to high depending on the level of training of the horse. Used to teach the horse to go on the bit and in frame.


                    • #11
                      Oh, Thomas, thank you so much for posting that *Wake Up Cat* video! When I saw the tap on the cheek I knew the moviemaker knew cats. I'm crying again, but this time it began with hysterical laughing!

                      You are a dear soul!

                      "Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." -Groucho Marx


                      • #12
                        Oh dear lord, LOVE the cat animation! So true.

                        Hey look, I joined ANOTHER forum! And you thought horses were addictive.


                        • #13
                          Love the cat thing. Have forwarded it to all my friends.


                          • #14
                            thanks for the history lesson

                            when debs was in the pony club she was the only one allowed to long rein the shires
                            as in ground driving-- as she was the only one at 12yrs old that knew what she was doing
                            so they took piccys of her doing it
                            i will dig it out --

                            and sent it to you thomas iam not to sure if i have it or she does as it might be in her double photo book or in my cupbaord

                            and appriecate your knowledge of where it all started from you learn something new all the time
                            thank you


                            • #15
                              I guess in my case ignorance is bliss; I never knew there was any confusion about the terms in the first place! I have always used the terms interchangeably.

                              One more term for you Thomas "in-hand". I always consider this to me short reining but I have a classic in-hand training video and have seen books like this that show long lines as well.


                              Should "in-hand" refer to both?
                              No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle. ~Winston Churchill


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Thomas_1 View Post
                                I'm very sorry to hear about your cat.

                                I hope this cheers you up. It sums up cats to me:


                                missed it the 1st time--
                                thats so funny and so true love the bit where he pulls the blokes ear
                                where do you find them


                                • Original Poster

                                  Originally posted by MSP View Post
                                  One more term for you Thomas "in-hand". I always consider this to me short reining but I have a classic in-hand training video and have seen books like this that show long lines as well.
                                  Should "in-hand" refer to both?
                                  In hand is any work done from the ground.

                                  So not just long reining and short reining but lunging too and even work done when the horse is just on a lead rope.