Con­for­ma­tion Clinic

Eval­u­ate and place these aged AQHA geld­ings. Then see how your choices com­pare to our ex­pert judge’s.

Horse & Rider - - CONTENTS -

Aged Quar­ter Horse geld­ings.

WHEN JUDG­ING hal­ter classes, it’s im­por­tant to re­mem­ber that con­for­ma­tion or phys­i­cal ap­pear­ance is the most im­por­tant cri­te­ria. When as­sess­ing con­for­ma­tion, I break it down into four cat­e­gories—bal­ance, struc­tural cor­rect­ness, breed and sex char­ac­ter­is­tics, and de­gree of muscling. Bal­ance is al­ways the most im­por­tant. I then look at struc­tural cor­rect­ness. Af­ter I as­sess bal­ance and struc­ture, I look at breed and sex char­ac­ter­is­tics. A horse should look like the breed he rep­re­sents, show­ing traits the breed is known for. Fi­nally, I com­pare muscling vol­ume and tone among the horses in the class. All of these traits must be judged and in­ter­preted, and a con­clu­sion made from the avail­able in­for­ma­tion.

In a live class, I’d be able to walk around these horses and see them from both sides, as well as from front and back. In this photo class, we have three left-pro­file shots, and they aren’t all taken from ex­actly the same an­gle, but I’ll judge them on what I can see. At ini­tial look, all three horses look fairly level from wither to hip, straight-legged, and I’ll as­sume sound. Now I’ll an­a­lyze them more thor­oughly.

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