Dusty Boots 4-H riding club practice the right way to lead a horse. Submitted photo

A demonstration of a fun mounted exercise, called “around the world” on a horse.

INDUSTRY —Dusty Boots 4-H held its first in-person meeting on April 11 since the onset of COVID-19. The meeting began with introductions since there were new members.

The educational, unmounted meeting and demonstration was given by Dusty Boots Assistant Leader, Ashley. The group was divided into pairs and each pair, with an adult volunteer went into each horse’s stall to practice safely haltering a horse. Once horses were haltered members safely led a horse out of a stall and to the riding arena where everyone practiced holding the lead line appropriately, leading the horse (from the left side), turning the horse away from us, stopping and backing. Ashley set up a small course for all members to practice by walking over a pole, and continuing to the opposite end of the arena, turning the horse (away from them) and proceeding around a cone, backing through a chute and then walked the horse back to the starting point.

Members were able to participate in a fun mounted exercise call “Around the World.” Members began by sitting astride a horse in a normal position. Then, swing a leg over the horse’s neck so both feet are on the same side of the horse. Continue to swing the other leg over the horse’s rear, now facing the horse’s rear and the rider is sitting backward. Riders continue until they have reached the forward riding position again, it was so fun!

The meeting ended with a demonstration of how to tie a quick release/safety knot and everyone had a chance to practice tying a quick release/safety knot.

The next club meeting will be on May 1 and the group will be learning about Horse Health Care & Veterinary Knowledge. New members are always welcome. Contact the Franklin County Extension Office at 207-778-4650.

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