Horse Canter

Horses September 23, 2009 Print Friendly and PDF

Ashley Griffin, University of Kentucky

The canter is a three beat gait where one pair of feet strike the ground simultaneously and the other two feet land independently. The canter/lope will either be on what is referred to as a right or left lead. If the horse is on the right lead then the hoof pattern is left hind, right hind and left front simultaneously, then right front. The opposite foot pattern represents the left lead as follows: right hind, left hind and right front simultaneously, left front. In general, horses are to be on the right lead when circling to the right and the left lead when circling to the left.

You do not have the Flash plugin installed, which means you are missing out on great interactive content. Download Flash.

Canter or Lope

Download this video! Horse Canter or Lope (8.8 MB)

To download this video, right click on the link above and select "Save Link As".

Horse Gaits

Connect with us

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest


This is where you can find research-based information from America's land-grant universities enabled by



This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.