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JoJo Lemond talks about where his heeling timing comes from in this video from X Factor Team Roping. Watch the video or read along below as we break it down.
Team Roping Heeling Swing and Timing
I want to talk about my swing a little bit here, heeling, where I want my swing focused, where I want it pointed. Right here that steer’s over to my left.
I want to swing there and I want to turn my horse right under my swing. I don’t want to change my swing. I don’t want to have my swing focused over here, and then whenever I turn in my swing to stay here. I’m never over my steer’s back. I want my swing be right over his back.
So as you get there, whenever I’m running down the arena, I’ve gotten my tip pointed at the steer, my horse turns right under it. What I mean with that is as I’m running down the arena, say the steer’s right off my left arm, I tip in my swing, I’m timing the steer running down the arena.
As I start to make my move in, my swing doesn’t change, my arm doesn’t change. I just turned my horse under my swing.
That way I’m not playing with my rope a lot and changing the angle of my rope a whole bunch. That way whenever I do turn in, I’ve got my swing over the steer’s back, I can set it down anytime that I get ready.
Anytime that I’m in time, I’m going to demonstrate where I want my swing pointed going down the arena. Say the steer is right directly in front of me. Right off my left, the tip of my left hand there.
As I’m running down the arena, I have my tip pointed at my steer and I’m trying to time the steer going down the arena. I feel my timing comes from the stride of my horse and my swing.
I’m not actually timing each individual jump. I want one swing per jump. I feel that my timing comes from my horse, and if he’s reading the cow and balancing off of a cow, that’s where my timing comes from.
But I got my tip angled over there to the left, and I’m running down the arena. As I make my corner and start to make my move in, I don’t change my swing. I just ride my horse under my swing.
So where I’m getting at with this is if I’ve got it tilted over to the left just enough, when I start riding under it, I don’t change anything. I just ride right under my swing. A lot of people want to play with their rope and pull it back behind their head and then draw it down.
I have maybe the worst habit of anybody with that. That is not a good habit to get into. My horse, he’s going to read my swing and I want him to be able to read it and get his timing off of me from my swing.
I’ll demonstrate that one more time right here. I want to point my tip right at his hip. I’ve got my timing coming off of that, my horse in the lead there, and as he moves in, I just let him move underneath my swing.