The Tennessee Walker or Tennessee Walking Horse is a gentle and comfortable riding horse. The breed was originally bred in the Southern United States to carry the owners of plantations around their lands. (A closely related breed is the Garrett Walking Horse) Their unique four-beat "running walk" is especially comfortable to ride, making the breed a well-suited trail companion. The breed is rarely seen in any of the sport horse disciplines; however, they are good for trail riding because of their smooth gaits, stamina and easy temper, and are also seen in Western riding disciplines and in harness.
The Tennessee Walking Horse has a reputation for having a very good disposition. It is a calm and easygoing breed, typically easy to train. While the horses are famous for flashy movement, they are quite hardy, popular for trail and pleasure riding as well as show.
Although many Tennessee Walkers, as they are commonly known, are black, other colors and patterns such as roan, chestnut or sorrel, bay, champagne and pinto are common. Recently, the breed registry began to recognize the sabino pattern, and it must be noted that many horses registered in the past as roans were, in some cases, sabinos. Walkers are generally 15 to 17 hands tall, but can range from 13.2hh to 18hh. Weight is generally between 900 and 1200 pounds.
In conformation, the Walker is a tall horse with a long neck and sloping shoulder. The head is traditionally large but refined in bone, with small well-placed ears. The horse has a fairly short back, short strong coupling, and an elongated stride. In the show arena, Walking horses are known for their gliding running walk and are usually shown with long manes and tails.