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ponytails

Question on Paso Fino/Peruvian gaits

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quote:

Originally posted by ponytails:

Do or can Pasos canter? I'm curious about how their gaits differ from walk, trot, canter horses?

This is a quote from a Paso Fino Breed Description:

Like pieces in a well-planned puzzle, the best of the contributing breeds became prominent in these isolated horses. Among other traits, their young enjoyed the hardiness of the Barb and the natural presence of the Andalusian. But most important and treasured was the incredibly even and smooth gait of the Jennet. Remarkably, that gait became the genetic stamp that ever after, despite physical changes brought about by directed breeding or locale, identified this horse as the one we know today by the name Paso Fino.

It is the lateral four-beat gait that distinguishes the Paso Fino in the equestrian world. As it moves, the horse's feet fall in a natural lateral pattern instead of the more common diagonal pattern. Rather than trotting, causing that seat thumping bounce that can be unpleasant for horse and rider, the Paso Finn's medium speed is a corto, during which the rider is reassuringly seated.

The basic gaits of the Paso Fino in order of speed are the paso fino, paso corto, and paso largo. They also walk and canter. These are not trained movements, but are natural to the horse from the moment of its birth. Paso Fino owners pride themselves in the naturalness of their animals. As with a child, an upbringing that includes good food, affection tempered with discipline, and lots of exercise, will assure that the horse best fulfills its potential. Artificial training aids are not necessary to bring about this genetically inherent gait.

The gait itself is evenly spaced, with each foot contacting the ground independently. The power of movement is generated primarily from the hind legs, and the impact of footfall is dissipated before it can reach the rider so that the ride is incomparably smooth.

Though each Paso Fino is born with the gait, some are natural athletes whose skill and presence destines them for the show ring. A champion generates a rapid staccato rhythm while muscles ripple over a fully collected body. The power of the hind leg drive is executed in beautiful contrast to the stunning restraint of the forelegs which move forward in inches. Horse and rider, as one, are challenged to perform at olympic quality levels, and the immediate reward is the audience's applause.

All Paso Fino gaits are a pleasure, but what most owners are looking for in a pleasure horse is not only beauty, spirit, carriage and disposition, but a comfortable medium-speed gait. That gait is the corto. Comparable in speed to a trot, the corto is the average trail gait. A well conditioned Paso Fino can travel at the corto for hours, and thanks to the smooth gait, so can the rider.

The largo is an even more extended version of the same footfall. A horse at the largo can cover ground at a breathtaking speed while still providing a secure and balanced seat for the rider.

I would love to ride a gaited paso fino or an icey.

~MH

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Yes they can every gaited horse i have rode can canter (where i work all the horses are gaited all 18 of them) Both pasos and peruvians can canter a well as tennessee walkers.

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Thanks! That was great information.

Two more questions:

As far as their hooves go, do they need to be trimmed different than a regular horse?

Do they require a special bit or hackamore?

Thanks!

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Sure they can canter. But what the people fail to mention is that it may not be a typical canter as we know it. If a horse has a locked-in four-beat gait as specified by their breed standard, their canter may be a little... well, different.

Here's a video of my daughter riding my PP gelding...

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(About 40 seconds in you'll see his canter.)

They were just goofing off in the pasture with just a halter on, so his gaits aren't pretty, but you can get an idea of what his canter looks like. Although a little on the awkward side, it's SO comfortable to ride.

Trimming for PP's is like any other horse SHOULD be... balanced and well-maintained. Some shows limit the toe length to avoid extreme angles and weight.

For every day riding and some open shows, you can use any tack you want. For breed shows and some breed classes at open and gaited shows, you are required to use traditional PP tack and attire. Peruvian tack does enhance the natural movement of the horse, however, so if you're wanting to achieve the truest gaits, I do recommend traditional tack.

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I rode Q (Paso Fino) the other day with her trainer and her husband and when they cantered their horses, I thought Q was gaiting...it was so smooth...but when I listened to her footfall, I realized she was cantering.

The difference:

Non-gaited horses tend to use their head/neck as a bit of leverage to lift their front end and when the back legs come forward the head/neck stretch out to the front and then (h/n) comes up again to lift the front end. This makes for a sort of rocking-chair motion when you are on their back, as their back will tip forward and backwards with their stride.

I found that Q's canter remained very level and her nead/neck did not nod at all. Her back remained level and smooth.

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You mean a Paso Fino and Peruvian Paso are two different breeds?? I'm kidding, just kidding, PacaPaca!! [big Grin] Nice video!

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PacaPaca, I cannot get the video past 1 min 19 secs. It could be me but I have tried it several times as I always enjoy your vids.

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LOL @ rackn. [ROTFL]

Remy~ Hmmm... I dunno why it won't download for you. It plays all the way through for me (in the browser) without even hitching. I posted another on the General Horse Chat board... can you view that one?

PS... how's your guy doing? I've missed out on a lot between internet problems and reformatting my computer.

Oops... didn't mean to hijack the thread. Sorry, ponytails.

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The canter is a 3-beat gait. A horse that is very lateral will frequently have some difficulty picking up this three beat gait. They can (i.e., are physically capable) but it requires significant effort.

Also, many gaited horses are "set" in gait by being punished for breaking gait. They quickly learn that striking the canter when asked for more speed brings negative consequences. So they don't. Even when asked to. And this means a "retraining" job for the human. And why I don't like the idea of "fixing" a gait.

Even a diagonally gaited horse can have canter issues. I'm riding one that is short, short backed, and short coupled. She is not comfortable (but is getting better as we work on her balance and teaching her to extend and collect).

I think the root of most gait issues with most gaited horses (and I mean all the gaits whether 2,3, or 4 beats) is lack of strength and conditioning. There is no way that a "weekend warrior" horse is going to be in shape to do much of anything but walk while carrying a human and a bunch of tack. This is especially true if the horse is stall kept. The only cure for this problem is wetting the blanket.

G.

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I finally managed to run the video all the way through. Really enjoyed it. I think I live vicariously through your PPs.

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