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How to Lead a Horse in Hand

How to Lead a Horse Up in Hand.
A well-behaved horse can be led safely, even past traffic, although this is not a natural form of behavior for it. A horse has to learn how to be led every bit as much as how to jump. Most horses learn when they are foals, but you must be prepared for a horse to revert to its natural instinct of flight at any time.
How to Lead a Horse in Hand
How to Lead a Horse in Hand

It is traditional always to walk on the left side of the horse, because most people are right-handed, and this means your strongest arm is next to the horse. Practice leading on both sides, however, so that the horse gets used to it. If the horse is used to being led only from the near side, it will have to learn as if from scratch when you find you have to lead from the other side.


Walk at the horse’s shoulder; if you walk in front and pull, or stare it in the face, the horse will resist

Holding the rope:

With one hand, hold the lead rope 12–18 in (30–45 cm) from the halter, and hold the end off the ground with the other hand. You will then have a better chance of holding on if the horse suddenly pulls away from you. Never wrap the rope around your hand. If the horse bolts, you will not be able to release yourself, and you may get seriously hurt.


More control:

A bridle gives you more control than a halter. When leading a horse in a bridle, bring the reins over the horse’s head and hold them in the same way that you would hold a rope. Do not loop the reins around your arm or wrist.

Leading on the road:

Always use a bridle when leading a horse on the road. Walk in the same direction as the traffic, putting yourself between the horse and the traffic. This means you may have to lead from the right-hand side. If the horse sees you there, it is less likely to mind the traffic.


1) Being a large, four-legged animal, a horse needs more space to turn than a human being needs. It
cannot "about-face" like a soldier. When you turn a horse, steady it first, then turn its head away from you, keeping yourself on the outside of the circle. When you turn, you should always be on the outside of the horse.
The hindquarters should not swing out, because this unbalances the horse.
2) As you turn the horse’s head away from you, the horse will have to bend its neck, and you will then not have to pull it around.
3) During the turn, you will inevitably move slightly in front of the horse’s shoulder. Once the turn is completed and the horse is walking in a straight line, position yourself correctly again.