DHorse has figured out that I'm never ACTUALLY going to touch him with the whip (despite all manner of threatening whip-waggling and menacing sounds) and now spends the whole session trying to follow me around the arena like a puppy, presumably hoping for cuddles/edibles. He's only four but going beautifully under saddle and coming long nicely with suppling and bending. Should I try something else or just give up lunging altogether? Any tips?
I was taught to lunge on a horse who already new "how" but was taught if he fell in , our was working his way in closer to me, to direct the lunge whip towards his shoulder to "push" him out - would that work?
I had this when I first got BonkeyTB - he now lunges beautifully because I never let him stop.
I had to do a fair bit of jumping around myself for a while to get behind him an drive him on (a whip probably would have been handy), it wasn't tidy but he soon got the message and realized it was easier for him to just do as he was told . As soon as he goes forward reward him with a 'nice' voice - gooood booooy or the like.
Do not let him stop! If he turns to you, get into another angle and drive him on, I didn't care which way he went all I focused on to start was stopping him turning in. Whip at the shoulder may work but if he is anything like mine was then he turns far to quickly to make that work .
It won't take long once he realizes your not messing around, I think mine cottenend on in 5 mins or so and it was sorted....although he will try it every now and again if he thinks I'm not on the ball....I'm never not on the ball .
Have you tried long reining? It's brilliant, if you've never done it, find someone to teach you. My 3 (nearly 4) yo lunges brilliantly because I did loads if long reining with him. It's also really fun to learn something completely new.
Long reining is much better than lunging. You don't have to stay on small circles which are taxing on a young, still growing horse, you have control of the shoulders and it is easier to teach a horse to be forward going which is essential.