The Barrel Guide: Add Speed In Your Barrel Racing Runs

Have you ever felt like you were plateauing with the speed in your barrel racing runs? Well, Y’all are in luck because today we are going to break down the ULTIMATE ways to add speed in your barrel racing runs! I’m excited to get down to business because ultimately, as barrel racers, we all want quicker and more powerful runs right?

Sometimes, it can feel as if we get stuck and can’t add any more speed. Well, if you are facing one of those times right now, don’t fear. Turn to these three strategies to build more power and speed in your barrel racing runs when it seems like there’s nothing left to add, and you may be surprised at the results! When in doubt, you can always reach out to us at and we are happy to help you and answer any questions that you may have!

After years of research, practice, patience, testing, and trial and error we have rounded up the best of the best. The best strategies and tips to add speed. Here are our favorite three.





Add speed in your barrel racing runs with tips in this article! Everyone wants more speed and power in their barrel racing runs, and we have picked out the top 3 tips for you below.

The top 3 barrel racing strategies to add speed in your barrel racing runs

Barrel racing strategy #1: Conditioning, nutrition, and consistency

While it may seem a very basic concept, you can never underestimate the conditioning and nutritional needs of your barrel racing horse. Your horse is an extreme and top-performing athlete. If you are looking to add speed in your barrel racing runs then the first two things you want to consider are conditioning and nutrition.

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Barrel racing strategy #2: Focus on maneuverability, hindquarter strength, and “running smarter.”

The next thing that comes after your horses conditioning, fitness, and nutrition, would be their maneuverability and hind end strength. The horses driving source of power stems from their hind end. If they are not constantly building and maintaining the muscle in their hind end then they are going to be consistently lacking in power. This ties in with the conditioning in some aspects, but there are many things that you can do under saddle during your training sessions to build on what you are already doing with their conditioning.

READ MORE: Barrel Racing Feel and Timing

Now, we also need to consider maneuverability. If your horse is not agile, then they are going to have a hard time getting around the barrels. Working on your horses overall maneuverability is going to greatly increase your speed around and off the barrel.

Lastly in this section is running smarter! Have you ever thought that maybe there was an easier way to do things than just pour pure effort in? Running smarter not harder combines running hard with taking a good look at your course and the arena, choosing great lines and the quickest routes, while optimizing and maintaining correctness and form around the barrels. It takes a bit to develop a keen eye, but once you hone in on this skill you are going to see improvements in your times.

Here are a few articles you can read for more information about setting yourself and your horse up for a great run and running smarter:

Barrel racing strategy #3: Focus on your fitness and riding ability

The last thing you need to do immediately is to turn your attention onto yourself! Yes, you heard me right. Focusing on your own fitness, riding ability, horsemanship skills, and nutrition will benefit you in and out of the saddle. Remember, if your horse is a high-performance athlete, so are you. Treat yourself accordingly and keep on a strict regimen for nutritional needs and your own fitness needs.

Have you checked out our NFR Guide: Making Your Barrel Racing Dreams a Reality article? It has a custom workout plan tailored for barrel racers!

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Insider advice from Rafter 3 Horse Development about adding speed in your barrel racing runs:

There are many great tips we could give you on adding speed to your barrel racing runs. These are our top 3, but there are always many other factors to consider. You can find a load of other helpful resources in our archives! We specialize in barrel racing training and rodeo events, but have teachings on various topics across the horse world. You can also check out the Rafter 3 Horse Development youtube channel or podcast.


A quick announcement for Rafter 3 Horse Development Barrel racing fans:

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Want to learn more about the barrel racing strategies for quick runs? Take a look into our barrel racing books!


Final thoughts on the top 3 barrel racing strategies for quicker runs

Thanks for tuning in with us today! Let us know in the comments below what you thought of our top 3 barrel racing strategies for quick runs and if you tried them. Feel free to reach out to us by email if you have any questions or comments. Have a great day, God bless you all, and keep practicing!


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One response to “The Barrel Guide: Add Speed In Your Barrel Racing Runs”

  1. As a horse enthusiast, I found “The Top 3 Barrel Racing Strategies to Add Speed in Your Barrel Racing Runs” article to be informative and practical. The article covers essential tips and strategies for improving your barrel racing runs by focusing on your horse’s conditioning, maneuverability, and nutrition, as well as your own fitness and riding abilities.

    The first strategy the article recommends is conditioning, nutrition, and consistency. This is a fundamental concept that should never be overlooked. A well-conditioned and well-fed horse will perform better and have more endurance, which is critical in barrel racing. The article also provides additional resources on barrel racing exercises and nutrition, which is helpful for readers who want to learn more.

    The second strategy focuses on the horse’s hindquarter strength and maneuverability. As the article highlights, a horse’s driving source of power comes from its hindquarters. By working on exercises that build and maintain the muscles in the hind end, you can improve your horse’s power and speed. Additionally, working on agility and maneuverability will help your horse navigate the barrels more efficiently.

    The third strategy is often overlooked but just as important as the previous two. The article emphasizes the importance of focusing on your own fitness and riding ability. As a rider, you are also an athlete and should take care of yourself accordingly. The article recommends creating a strict regimen for your nutritional and fitness needs to improve your riding ability and horsemanship skills.

    Overall, “The Top 3 Barrel Racing Strategies to Add Speed in Your Barrel Racing Runs” article provides practical and useful tips for anyone looking to improve their barrel racing runs. Whether you are a seasoned rider or just starting, the strategies outlined in the article can help you achieve your goals. I highly recommend this article to anyone who wants to excel in barrel racing.

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