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Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance

December 9, 2011


The links that follow have information related to strength training from various articles by different authors.

  •  Strength and flexibility an article by Nancy Loving, DVM (a great endurance source). 

She advises a common-sense approach: "After an intense workout, allow two to three days recovery. If recovery is too short, there is a danger of injury due to insufficient time for repair. If the interval is too long, the muscles will not adapt to the exercise stimulus. However, rest days do not mean the horse has to stand in the stall--he can do a different type of exercise, hack, or go out in pasture. Variety is key."

  •  An article on using the downhill for teaching strength in collection is here.  You will have to read past the initial question to get to the meat of the article.

  • "Overall strength training can be greatly enhanced with in a relatively short period of time using inclines. Walking and cantering up hill is and easy and fun way to develop your horses overall strength. Specific strengthening of one hind leg is often necessary to help improve the horses' straightness, thus his overall strength. Specific exercises should be developed with this in mind but should never over tax that limb or in any other way detract from the horses overall development program. Adding weight to the lower limbs to improve expression is al so a viable option. This must be done carefully and the additional weight slowly increased up to 2-LB maximum."  This article is on conditioning the dressage horse, but the strategy is applicable to strengthening any horse.

  • Exercising your horse for strength and flexibility. This article written by Stefanie Reinhold an equine bodywork practitioner. 
  • "Core training exercises differ from other conditioning methods because of the particular muscles being worked. "Core training exercises specifically target the joints and the muscles in the horse's neck and back," explains Clayton. "They increase the flexibility of the joints between the vertebrae and strengthen the horse's muscles, particularly the muscles that hold the horse's back in a rounded position during work."

Activate Your Horse's Core.  A book by the same author that is more in depth than the article.

Some interesting articles for your reading enjoyment this weekend.  The opinions expressed in these articles may or may not be in agreement with my own, though I'd follow Nancy Loving off a blind cliff I respect her opinion so much.  The rest I leave for you to decide ☺.   ~ E.G. 

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