More Winning Ways by Lyndee Stairs

Positive thinking works. If you believe you are a winner, you will be a winner. Being a winner doesn’t mean winning every time you enter, it means knowing that you are prepared, learning from each run to help you improve the next one, and being a gracious person, win or lose is what makes you a real winner.

There are at least three different ways to work a horse on the barrel pattern. Conformation and athletic ability determine which is effective on each horse. I have to ride a horse for awhile to get a feel for which may suit him the best. Each horse seems to be born with his own style.

Is your horse ready for the barrel pattern?

I get asked this question a lot. We take horses in training for barrels here at the Stairs Ranch and prospective clients want to know if their horse is ready to start on the barrel pattern. So here is my reply:

Some barrel racers send their horses out to reining horse trainers to have a better handle and a stop put on them before being started on the barrels. At the Stairs Ranch, we start our own horses and believe that a horse should be well broke in all five of the body parts (poll, neck, shoulder, ribs, hip). But, a horse must have a barrel horse stop before it runs barrels.