Pole Bending improves your barrel horse!

   Adding pole bending into your weekly routine can benefit your horse. Starting your horse on poles not only increases your horses value if you ever decide to sell, it also strengthens you horse! The flying lead change that occurs throughout a pole pattern improves a horse's coordination and will make your horse quicker in his turns. Working the poles at a walk and trot during the week, will highlight potential problems in your horse's fundamental training. Counter arcing and moving off of leg pressure are two things that will transfer over to the barrels. The lighter your horse becomes, the easier it is to adjust your horse if you are too close to a barrel. When you squeeze your inside leg your horse will know to give more room. Be sure to invest in solidly built pole bending bases, as the home made metal ones can sometimes cause injuries or the cheaper plastic ones which can break easily. Working the poles during the week as part of your training regimen will be great for your horse's mind as well as challenge you in your riding. Remember when  practicing poles, you should never cross over your horse's neck with your hands and you should not pull with your outside rein.

    Using the proper bases to practice is important. Josey Pole Bases are the product of choice used by pole bending champions, due to their durability and stability. Our pole bases are approved by the AQHA and most other major associations because they are the proper design and weight. Each base is a made of a solid piece of durable, heavy rubber. Because of their quality design and weight, they do not have to be filled with sand. All that is required is to use six to seven foot tall, 1 ½”-inch PVC pipe from your local hardware store with each base. We always have a Pole Bending class at all of our clinics and schools because we believe in its importance.  It is one of our featured events at the start of our annual Josey Reunion every year with our winner riding away in a Josey saddle.