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Horse Riding Disciplines

Horse Illustrated publishes content about a variety of horse disciplines. The various disciplines covered include: cattle events, dressage, driving, endurance and competitive trail, eventing, halter and showmanship, horse racing, hunter/jumper, reining, saddle seat, speed events, vaulting, and western pleasure. This overall category showcases articles from all covered riding types, and our subcategories breaks down the topics in the individual riding styles. Find articles that can help with training within those disciplines, news, true stories from competitors, and more within each subcategory. We love highlighting real people with their stories of triumph and tribulations, so that every rider can learn from others' experiences.

Riding the flat and running walk on a Walking Horse is like floating through air—it’s the ultimate ride,” says performance horse trainer Wendy Said, who has trained pleasure (flat shod) Tennessee Walking Horses, among other breeds, in Southern California...
Did you know that the word "dressage” comes from a French word that means "to train”? Every time you sit on a horse and school him on the flat, you are doing dressage. Doing flatwork may seem boring at...
Practice makes perfect, right? Yes, but if your speed event practice consists of running a pattern over and over again, all that hard work could backfire. Horses that run a barrel or pole pattern for practice begin to think...
For many riders the days of learning to post the trot are relics of the past. The hours spent listening to our instructors shouting "up down, up down" (as if that made it any easier) are over. Our time...
When schooling, the majority of western riders focus their attention on establishing consistently slow and steady gaits, which are essential for competition in many western events. However, there is a downside to reducing a horse's speed—he can lose the...
One of the things that draws us to horses is their beauty. In halter classes, this attribute is center stage. Both grooming and health care play a role in creating an eye-pleasing picture.The single best thing you can...
A half-halt isn't: pulling the reins. To start out, riding instructors often teach beginners very simplistic aids to take the place of certain skills until the rider's balance and body control improves. This is particularly true of the half-halt....
A riding vacation can supply memories for a lifetime. To ensure those memories leave you with smiles instead of regrets, explore your options and ask the right questions before choosing a trip. If you want to take a cattle drive,...
Like contestants in a Miss America pageant they strut and parade their exceptional beauty and perfect bodies. Their glossy coats reflect the sunlight like varnish, emphasizing every movement and highlighting the sinuous curve of muscle rippling as they walk...
Headset Defined The ideal headset for the western pleasure show horse can be seen on a horse that carries its neck flat with the rest of its topline."He will have a totally level topline from his poll all the way...
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