An Exercise to Help Improve Your Trot to Canter Transitions




The key to setting the horse up for a good canter depart is to make sure he is truly straight and connected, with his hind legs stepping well underneath his body. And the key to getting that good depart after your successful set up is to be able to give a quiet, clear, and precise canter cue to the horse... in a way that doesn't change his balance at that moment. 

Many times riders ask for the canter too strongly (more on that here), or not clearly enough, both of which can cause the horse to tend to run into the canter. Here is an exercise that will slow up both the horse's and the rider's mind in the moments before a trot to canter transition, allowing for more clear communication in the actual aid to canter.