How Will Your Horse React

country tough trail versatility horsemanship and training obstacle course trail riding Mar 15, 2024
horse on bridge

Most trainers will tell you that your horse can only go up, down, left, right, forward, or backwards.  Horses are spunky creatures and with them being two wheel drive, I am here to tell you the new and improved ways in which your horse can react.

Yabba Dabba Doo

In the Yabba Dabba Doo, there is an extreme amount of movement, but the horse doesn’t really go anywhere.  Just like when Fred Flintstone went to take off in his car, his feet were moving but the car didn’t budge.

Football Sprawl

If you are one of the lucky individuals to have the opportunity to have a horse that does the football sprawl, you will probably stay in the saddle.  This is when the horse gets scared and drops, but stays on its feet.

Zero Gravity

This is also the almighty 180, “oh heck no”, or the Suspended Rider.  When your horse is so scared that it abruptly turns half a circle and starts back from where it came from before the spook, you just experienced Zero Gravity.  This happens so quickly that the rider is suspended in the air and gets to think about the pain they are about to endure. Things get extra hairy when the horse decides to combine the Zero Gravity with the Carl Lewis.

Carl Lewis

Your horse should have been an Olympic Sprinter just like Carl Lewis!  This is the runaway that has a secret turbo boost you were completely unaware existed.  Horses are known for pairing the Carl Lewis with the Yabba Dabba Doo, Zero Gravity, or The 90!

The 90

The 90 is way easier to ride than the 180, but it all depends on if the horse stops after the turn!  The 90 is a slight version on the “oh heck no” also referred to as the Zero Gravity.  If your horse does not runaway with you, sometimes this will require that you do something called the Spider Monkey.  This involves you doing whatever it takes to get yourself back into the middle of the saddle, using muscles that have been untouched since you fit into that old pair of jeans that you refuse to part with in your closet.

Van Halen

The “Van Halen” describes your horse that JUMPS!  There of course are different versions for the Van Halen.  The Peppy La Pew which is when all four legs come off the ground at one time just as Peppy La Pew did when he was courting the ladies.  The NASA Space Launch is a jump that involves the horse thinking that it has to turn on the boosters and do the largest front leg only jump in order to survive!  The NASA Space Launch creates some wonderful photo opportunities, unless it morphs into a very energetic Peppy La Pew.

Cupid Shuffle

No jump, no runaway, no spin, just a shuffle from where you were to four foot over either left or right.  This can have the same effect on you as the Zero Gravity, which is known as a “Visit from Sir Isaac Newton”.  You wanted to stay were you were at, but the horse moved and left you there. 

Horses are always surprising us and are athletic to no end.  Here’s to hoping you never have to find out what type of reaction is locked away inside of your horse!


Written by Brandy Von Holten

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