Normally, riders carry the whip on the inside of the horse. At times, we may choose to carry it on the side with the
'lazy leg'. However, one of the more frustrating moments for a rider is to need the whip for the horse's right
hind leg and to be holding it in your left hand. Although it is possible to ride with two whips, most purists frown on this
approach. It is, therefore, to the rider's advantage to be able to switch the whip from one hand to the other so as to not
lose the moment or the continuity of the exercise.
The most widely used technique
is to pass the whip over the horse's withers with the mushroom end of the device toward the ground. An alternative technique
is to pull the whip through the hand. Choosing one procedure over the other is simply a matter of preference either yours
or your horse's.
If your horse is nervous about
the whip, accustom him to it before you cross it behind his head. Learning the technique on the ground first will make it
easier when you're in the saddle, allowing you to then concentrate on positioning the reins and consoling your horse, should
he need it. Change the whip cautiously until you are confident that your horse is not scared and accepts your new practice.
Refining either method requires
a modicum of knowledge and a couple of practice sessions. The steps outlined here may seem awkward at first, but will eventually
become second nature. The end results are well worth the time it takes
to perfect the process.