Building muscle?

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Building muscle?

This is a discussion on Building muscle? within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Does horseback riding build muscle
  • What builds more muscles trot or canter

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    01-04-2013, 08:35 PM
Building muscle?

What are some ways to build muscle? There's a good hill behind our house that I'm going to trot and canter up, and as soon as my dad gets my jump standards finished I'm going to jump him and do some ground pole work. Any other ideas? My horse has lost some muscle in his neck, shoulders, and hindquarters from not being worked in over 6 weeks, and I would like to get him conditioned again and keep him there.
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    01-06-2013, 09:03 PM
If you are just trying to tone him up, plenty of flat work and transitions. Walk to trot to walk to trot to canter to trot to walk to canter and so on. Each transition comes from his hind quarters so that's going to build muscle there. Don't be afraid to trot and canter for long periods of time. Most of our horses are over fed and under worked. Bring him back to the barn with a wet saddle pad! For his top line ( neck shoulders and back) get him to work with a level neck. When your horse lowers his head and his top line is level, he is using all of them muscles. If he is not used to this do if for a few minutes a day then increase as he gains the muscle. Soon you will notice a thicker neck and stronger shoulders. You can also put on side reins and lunge. You can really see the frame he should be in when he lowers his head and rounds his back. When he does this he will also use his hind end more efficiently. It all ties together to get him moving properly and the muscle will come with that.
    01-09-2013, 10:42 AM
Definitely take advantage of the hills you available. Your horse may initially want to trot/canter up it but as he gains strength, having him walk up the hill is also a good way to help build muscle.

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