What’s that? Explaining long lines

Long Lines maybeYou may have heard a horse person casually refer to “long lining” their horse from time to time and wondered–what’s that all about, anyway?

Long lining is a great training tool for horses of all breeds and disciplines, especially young horses or those training for a new career. It’s also a great option for horses who are recovering from an injury and need some exercise but can’t yet carry a rider.

Long lining basically refers to driving a horse from the ground. Before beginning, it’s important the horse be accustomed to carrying a saddle or surcingle and recognize a verbal command to move forward.

Two lines of around eight or ten feet in length each run from the horse’s bit through a surcingle or saddle to the driver behind the horse. The driver can teach the horse to respond to the feeling of the lines on its sides and begin to encourage him to bend to the right and to the left when moving through turns and circles.

A horse being long lined

A horse being long lined

Being exposed to long lining before riding can give young horses a better sense of brakes and steering before carrying a rider. For dressage riders, it’s also a great time to begin to introduce some lateral exercises before climbing in the saddle.

Long lining can give riders a stronger sense of how their hands relate to the horse’s mouth, often encouraging them to be gentler.

We sell long lines in a variety of lengths, colors, and styles at our online shop. Our beta biothane long reins are excellent for use in the arena, where they may get wet or sandy–beta comes clean when rinsed in soapy water, and if you send it through the washing machine, it’s good as new! Best of all, our long reins are just as strong as nylon alternatives without being rough on your hands.


Posted on May 23, 2014, in Helpful articles and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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