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Groundwork with a horse – what is it and what do you need?

Published: 2021-08-25 10:34:48 Categories: Guides Rss feed , Products Rss feed


The growing popularity of working with a horse from the ground is a very positive phenomenon, which proves beneficial for both horses and their owners. What is it and what accessories is it worth to have at hand when we want to start such trainings?

In equestrian societies and among horse riding enthusiasts, the topic of working with a horse from the ground is becoming more and more prevalent. Riders are looking for alternative ways to spend time with their beloved animals – not only during training. And as they are becoming more aware of the mental and physical development of their horses, they try and take their needs into account. Ground work is a great way of exercising together and interacting with each other - of course, if we approach it reasonably.

1. What is groundwork with a horse?

Groundwork is a collective name for all the different types of training done with a horse without mounting up. It contains various methods of natural horsemanship (e.g. Pat Parelli's Seven Games), learning the basic skills of a young horse (leading in the hand, lifting the legs, yielding to pressure), lunging and even learning tricks. Such versatility makes groundwork successfully applied to horses of all ages and levels of training. What is more, it can serve various purposes - depending on the needs and abilities of both the rider and the horse. Groundwork may be started with a foal and continued even when the older horse is finished with work under saddle. This type of training is also great for horses who have suffered injuries or those who for other reasons can no longer be used for riding or harness. Of course, we need to adjust the type and intensity of ground work to the age, health and abilities of the animal. Why to work with a horse from the ground? Such training proves helpful on many levels and comes with a numer of advantages!


  1. Busse Lunge Support Cotton
  • It can serve as a warm-up before the ride.
  • It creates a bond between the horse and the rider, strengthens the trust towards the man and shows the animal the rules of cooperation. At the same time it teaches mutual communication.
  • It is a good introduction to learning new things - those necessary in everyday life, as well as the advanced school figures.
  • It diversifies training, which in turn has a positive effect not only on the relationship with the horse, but also on its psyche and body.
  • It builds muscles, establishes proper alignment, shapes the horse's balance.
  • It makes it possible to change undesirable behaviors in a horse (such as invading personal space, anxiety during grooming, or even aggression).
  • It is used for desensitizing and habituation.
  • It helps overcome the rider’s anxiety.

At the same time, working from the ground can be entertaining for both the horse and its owner. It keeps horses occupied - especially those that may be bored due to lack of work, and increases safety during subsequent trainings.


  1. Busse Lunging Girth with Handle
  2. Busse Lunging Girth Pad Plush
  3. Busse Rope Halter-Set Two-Tone
  4. Busse Ringe Rope Halter

2. Which equipment to use?

You don't need too many accessories to do ground work with your horse. The most basic equipment, associated mainly with natural horsemanship, is a rope or a lunge and a halter (regular or rope), as well as a lunging or a dressage whip - and of course treats! Such equipment allows you to take your first steps in working from the ground with your horse. It is worth noting that the rope is heavier than the lunge, which makes it possible for us to give the horse clearer signals. A few more accessories may come in handy when it comes to lunging - a halter, a bridle or a cavesson (the latter features buckle fastenings on a reinforced noseband). We also need one or two lunges for the horse and a lunging whip, with the use of which we create a triangle shape that encloses the horse and allows us to give signals to the animal. More and more often, we can also see the use of lunging belts (a lunging belt pad or a saddle pad should be placed under such belt) and patents, such as chambons, side reins or gogues. All lunging patents should be treated as a guideline for the horse, not as a shortcut for the rider. Only then does their use make sense.


  1. Busse Cavesson Nylon Pro

Check out our products: saddle pads, horse bridles, horse halters.

If you have any questions, give us a call.

Equestrian store: +48 784 039 784


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