The CINCH sponsored First 2 Finish Trail Duel is a competitive head-to-head trail class that pits riders against each other in a race over trail obstacles where only knockdowns and time matters.
When done properly, an L-shaped back-through in a trail pattern should look almost effortless. Acing this type of maneuver requires hours of practice, teaching your horse to back with ease and cadence while listening to a combination of your hand, leg, and seat cues.
If you show in the trail class, you’re probably quite familiar with the rope gate obstacle. It’s easy for show management to transport and set up, and it’s forgiving when it comes to working the obstacle. But now we’re seeing the metal trail gate return to the show pen, which adds another item to prepare to face in a class.
There’s a common misconception among horses and humans that what we want lies somewhere else. It’s why horses graze on the other side of a fence when the grass is just as green and lush on their side. And why humans long for something—tangible or not—that we don’t have. I call focusing on that other place or thing we want “destination addiction.” Here I’ll discuss why destination addiction can hamper your training and riding progress and how to move away from it once and for all.
Do you have complete control over where every foot lands when riding your horse? Foot placement is crucial for precise navigation of any obstacle, whether it be poles or logs in a trail or ranch riding pattern, working through tires in an obstacle course, or navigating unsure footing on a trail. Where your horse’s first foot lands right before you enter the obstacle can make or break your execution. Here I’ll give you tips to ace that placement every time.