menu Braiding Info from Lucky Braids
About Ruthann Smith, Horse Braider and Instructor
Turnout Clinics
menu menu
making horses look & feel like winners

Beautifully braided maneWe have all awed at picture-perfect braids.
Most people recognize that some look better than others
without grasping what makes the difference. Behind
the scenes, while most people sleep, the best
braiders twist these secrets into the hair of
winning horses. During decades of braiding
and teaching the craft, I have found there
are common, fundamental misconceptions
about braiding manes. The following
information may surprise you.

The most important element of the mane is the bottom line, not the bump.
The line created by the braids makes an optical illusion. It is what your eye will
be drawn to instead of any irregularities in the top line of the neck.

Pinwheel braided tail Braiding is not only to make the horse's hair look stylish.
It enhances or compensates for faults in conformation, and is an
important expression of respect for the judge. Attractive,
correct turnout catches the judge's eye and earns credibility
immediately. More braids are not necessarily better.
It is more important that the braids stay straight
and flush to the neck. If there are too many
braids, they are unstable.

Your hands should not cramp when you braid!

If you use my leverage system between your fingers, you will not need to tense up your hands. Braiding slowly does not mean you'll do better work. The elite braiders recognize that once you have skill, going fast makes for better braids. Once you have a feel, the uniformity of the braids comes from your rhythm making them. It is not uncommon for the top braiders to finish a mane and tail in 45 min

Making a horse stand still is not just about a moving target.
It teaches the horse to relax. This leads to further successes as
the horse is more disciplined and receptive to you on and off
its back. Braiding can be relaxing and fun. If you use my
formula you can consistently yield beautiful braids.
It involves quiet, "grounding" time with horses.
Braiding well is rewarding: it will save or make
you money; relieve the stress of finding a
skilled, reliable braider; and give you the
aesthetic advantage in the ring.

For more information, please join our confidential mail list. You will receive a quarterly Evolved Grooming™ Newsletter that covers the full spectrum of grooming tips and techniques for top turnout™ as well as seasonal grooming issues.

Braid tightly and enjoy!

Some quotes about braiding...

"I braid the horses I ride. I think it contributes to our relationship and translates to success in the ring ....Braiding for me is part of the bigger picture of your horsemanship.
We all try to take care of the horses the best we can. Braiding is just that added touch
that you put on your whole program of training your horses"
Peter Wylde

"As a judge, beautiful braiding indicates to me that you have really prepared
for this competition
Lawrence Poulin

"Braiding shows respect for the horse. Its a horse sport and the horses come first."
George Morris

"I do think braiding is respect for the judge. We braid for CDI jogs and it's not
mandatory. We do it as presentation for the judges. We want to give them the best
presentation we can. We dress up, we put on blazers, its all for the judges."
Dorothy Morkis

"Braiding is the icing on the cake"
George Morris

© Lucky Braids 2014 All Rights Reserved
Contact Us

ph: 781.665.5988

back to top