Exercise/Strength Training Suggestions - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 02:27 AM Thread Starter
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Exercise/Strength Training Suggestions

Hi! I have a 13 y.o QH. He's the only horse I've ever had, although I've had him since he was 3.5, so I have limited knowledge. Last year he suffered an apparent ulcer and lost 100 pounds abrubtly, then subsequently had several bouts of lameness due to problems related to chiropratic issues. I've been working with a vet to put weight back on him, and he has finally gotten back to a good weight. I've had a chiropractor out to work on him and gotten a new farrier. I really need to come up with a good plan now to gradually build up his musculature (from nothing). He lost a lot of muscle during this debacle. He is currently not entirely safe to ride on trails and I am partially disabled and not able to ride him 'vigorously'. I am also right at his weight limit and currently dieting to get lower to reduce stress on his back.

The chiropractor suggested starting with poll flexion and surcingle lunging. I could use some suggestions on duration and repetitions and how to ramp it up. I don't want to coddle or hurt him.

All my best,

Jen
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post #2 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 02:07 PM
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Walking and trotting in hand and under saddle is a great start. Try twenty minutes of walking and ten trotting, broken up and with some rest breaks built in if he needs them. If he can't handle that yet, just back off a little. Let him tell you what he is ready for. Just make sure he gets worked at least four times a week. Do you have pictures? We love pictures.
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post #3 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 03:14 PM Thread Starter
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Pictures of My Baby

I'll get a current one of him later today. But, for comparison purposes, here are two - you'll know which is which. One is him before the ulcer looking buff and handsome. One is him at the worst during the ulcer crisis looking emaciated. Poor baby.



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post #4 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 03:26 PM Thread Starter
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Pics Attempt Two

Took me a while to figure out the picture posting thing..




Last edited by chrystalheart; 06-09-2013 at 03:33 PM.
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post #5 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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Can you see the pictures?

I'm not sure if you can see the pictures. I can only see them if I click on edit.

They are here:

www.petorella.net/MISC/caspar_tacked.jpg
www.petorella.net/MISC/Caspar_Ulcer_10-2012b.jpg
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post #6 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 03:54 PM
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He looks like a really nice guy. It might help you keep track of his progress to take a picture on the same day every week. That's what I do when I need to make a change to any horse's body, whether it's muscle or gaining/losing weight. When you see them every day (at least, this is true for me) it is so hard to gauge how they have changed over time.

Learning never stops
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post #7 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 04:28 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by aforred View Post
He looks like a really nice guy. It might help you keep track of his progress to take a picture on the same day every week. That's what I do when I need to make a change to any horse's body, whether it's muscle or gaining/losing weight. When you see them every day (at least, this is true for me) it is so hard to gauge how they have changed over time.
That's a great idea. Thanks for the suggestion!
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post #8 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aforred View Post
Walking and trotting in hand and under saddle is a great start. Try twenty minutes of walking and ten trotting, broken up and with some rest breaks built in if he needs them. If he can't handle that yet, just back off a little. Let him tell you what he is ready for. Just make sure he gets worked at least four times a week. Do you have pictures? We love pictures.
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I was walking him with rest breaks and just a tiny bit of trotting for 20-30 minutes but he was getting worse.. then I got the chiropractor to come see him. He seems to tire out after about 5 turns around the round pen. Trotting was really making him uncomfortable. Hopefully he will be more comfortable now and it will be just about building muscle and endurance. I'm just not sure how far to push him. After a while I can add in some poles or low jumps to go over too so he has to pick up his feet and use his rear more.

I haven't used a surcingle before, but a trainer did use one on him before. I'm going to see if the trainer at the barn can walk me through it.
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post #9 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 04:51 PM
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Are there any hills where you live? Hill work is great, even if you just lead him up and down at the walk.

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post #10 of 10 Old 06-09-2013, 05:06 PM Thread Starter
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Are there any hills where you live? Hill work is great, even if you just lead him up and down at the walk.
There are, but he is really afraid of motorcycles and three wheelers which are so very popular out here! We had done a ton of work with him to work through his issues and made him about 85% solid on the trail. Then he was ridden on a multiuse trail and a mountain bike rider flew down the trail and ran right into his butt and now he's afraid again. Can't really blame him. It's hard to trust the world to be a safe place when things like that happen..
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