Thanks Becky, your comments are very interesting and I think would work really well with my horse. That's because he will always try to guess what you want, and keep offering different things until he hits on the one you want. So it's extremely easy to "catch" him moving things slightly in the direction you want, and reward it. Can you tell me what you reward with, presumably the click only marks that they are about to get a titbit for their efforts? Are there risks of turning him into a horse that nudges and frets for nibbles??
I'm very interested to read that Spanish walk almost creates a 2 time feeling, because that's exactly what has happened and I wanted to make sure it was right. My horse has already guessed, just from my seat and hands that I want him to bring his shoulder right up and flick the leg out before he puts it down. He's not doing it very far yet, but he certainly is doing it. He's so sweet!
You might be interested in what's happened Heather. You stressed the importance of getting them moving forward as quickly as possible after they understand the leg lift. I decided to give it a go without waiting for someone on the ground to be able to help me, so I started it from walk and kept it going forward. Obviously he doesn't yet stretch the leg out much from the shoulder, but I am convinced he has understood my aid to walk slowly forward with an exaggerated shoulder lift and toe point. I've done it four times now, just a couple of minutes at a time, and I have got a longer suspension and a more exaggerated shoulder lift and point each time. I'm pretty sure if I carry on, he will produce a full Spanish walk, possibly without ever being taught it from the floor. And obviously, teaching him to go forward will not be an issue, as he's learning it while already moving forward. He learnt piaffe the same way, from guessing what I wanted while I was on his back, and this is going very much in the same direction. It's such fun - brightens a dull winter day no end!