The horse must be encouraged to have freedom of forward movement. You don’t want to have to use the lunge whip continuously to keep the horse forwards - remember aids are for a change in the way of going, not to be given all of the time. The horse is now comfortable with the lunge circle and the freedom to move controllably forwards around this circle in at least walk and trot. You are looking for him to begin to relax in his work and lift his back, arch his neck and relax from his poll. He may offer this on his own, but it is more likely that he will fall on his inside shoulder and twist his head to the outside. You must gently encourage him to straighten by gentle, elastic ‘pulls’ on the lunge line. You want to ask him to bring his nose onto the line of the circle. This is backed up with the lunge whip asking the horse to step forwards with his inside hind. If you pull too hard he will bring his neck in and swing his bottom out.
There is a subtle nuance of timing the whip and rein aid here; the whip is used first to create the bigger step forwards and under and is given at the point that the horse has broken over from the carrying phase and is entering the thrusting phase as he pushes off with the inside hind leg. This is quickly followed by the rein aid as the hind leg leaves the ground and before it enters the carrying phase again.
The horse is now moving forwards on the circle and invited to look for a contact. This is the start of the longitudinal stretch that will improve the topline. For this to be complete the horse must be straight i.e. when the inside hind steps into or over the hoof print left by the inside fore – on both reins.
Once he is working happily like this you can introduce side reins. When riding we would not simply ride with leg and no hand otherwise all of the energy would rush out through the front door. The horse must be shown the forward driving signals and the restraining signals.