Stacy’s Video Diary: Jac-Episode 17- Colt starting: Ground (line) driving and dressage whip training

Total training time: 15 hours

In this episode I cover two colt starting subjects that are key in my program which lead to a smooth transition from ground work to riding.

Ground driving:Stacy Westfall colt starting line driving ground work

The training that I did in Episode 16 with the rope, flipping the stirrups, prepared Jac for successful ground driving. Keep in mind that the 24’ ropes I am using (made by Weaver Leather and in my product line), once attached to the bit, should be considered reins. I keep the bridle reins tied to the saddle horn so that Jac cannot lower his head and get a front leg over the lines. I also run the ropes through the stirrups to keep them from being stepped on.

If you haven’t done ground driving before I suggest that you practice with an older horse first.

Bend and move forward:Stacy Westfall colt starting

Watch that even though I am using the dressage whip Jac doesn’t seem irritated. He even stands without moving at one point for a full 45 seconds straight while I tap persistently.

This is happening because Jac is NOT scared. Instead, Jac knows that he has time to think. If I had tapped for 15 seconds and then HIT him hard to make him move….he would have moved but it wouldn’t have allowed Jac time to think. Because Jac knows he has time to think…he becomes more confident. Confident in his own decisions and confident in me because I didn’t force him.


  1. […] while standing still and bending while moving (see Episode 16 & 18),  ground driving (see Episode 17), as well as mounted work. Once mounted up the horse should learn to bend, spiral out and counter […]

  2. Jenny Larue on January 8, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    I hadn’t thought about the fact that if I keep up the lower pressure, even if they’re not doing anything, that can still be a good thing. My two horses are so different, so I have to switch *my* thinking when I switch horses. One is highly reactive and moves with the slightest pressure, which used to frustrate me, now I like it. The other one is about as dull as you can get. I am constantly working with her to get any response. Maybe she’s just thinking and I need to give her more time? She’s my challenge!

  3. Lorri Birch on January 6, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    My horse throws a fit( like a fish out of water) when I go to blanket and saddle him he didn’t do this when I first got him what do you think has happened?

    • Stacy on January 9, 2014 at 9:15 pm

      If you can go ride with the person you got him from or who trained him that would be best. If that isn’t possible I would have a pro evaluate him. Major changes make me think physical but a pro standing there looking at him will see more.

  4. GimmeADream on January 1, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    Excellent!Would this technique of ground driving work for teaching a horse to haul a buggy or a sleigh? And was it the stirrup that you were tapping or the girth or Jac’s side?

    • Stacy on January 2, 2014 at 6:45 pm

      Yes, the ground driving is a step to teaching them to pull a cart of any sort. I was tapping just behind the stirrup where my leg would hang or slightly behind that where I will use the whip when I mount up.

  5. badasscoyote on January 1, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    I am so enjoying these videos- thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge!!

  6. Patricia Holland on January 1, 2014 at 7:27 pm

    I am 75 years young and I wish I knew you 30 years ago

    • Stacy on January 2, 2014 at 6:45 pm

      Your too kind!

  7. Jennifer Stanley on January 1, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    I love these videos 😀 Thank you

Leave a Comment




100% Private - 0% Spam

Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

No one taught you the skills you need to work through these things.

Riders often encounter self-doubt, fear, anxiety, frustration, and other challenging emotions at the barn. The emotions coursing through your body can add clarity, or can make your cues indistinguishable for your horse.

Learning these skills and begin communicating clearly with your horse.

Click here to learn more.



Join the newsletter

Subscribe to get the latest content and updates by email.