I need some input on how to put some muscle on my horse. - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 28 Old 03-08-2012, 11:48 PM Thread Starter
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Question I need some input on how to put some muscle on my horse.

My Appy Appendix gelding is 5 years old. He is by no means skinny or underweight, but his muscles don't appear to be at their full potential. A part of this may be because he was undernourished as a colt. ( his mother died when he was only 3 months old =/)

A lot of people comment on how he's filled out in the last year, however, I always get, "his neck is so thin" and "his shoulders are kinda narrow".

I don't expect him to look like a diesel quarter horse, being he is half thoroughbred, but I know he has some more filling out to do.

I don't want him to get fat, he already has a little hay belly!

Now, does anyone have any good supplements or vitamins I can put him on to help bulk him up a bit ? I already had him on smartmass, but that helped his lean muscle rather than his bulky muscle.

Any tips on how to get him to look like the stud he thinks he is ? Lol

Thanks a bunch.
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post #2 of 28 Old 03-08-2012, 11:56 PM
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No supplement is going to put muscle on a horse who is not getting enough exercise designed to build muscle.... I would recommend you also include how much and what kind of exercise your horse gets, so people can give you a better response.
Kathy
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post #3 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 12:25 AM Thread Starter
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yes, this is true. Sorry.

For the past year (i bought him in February of last year) I have not missed more than a week without riding him. Three days is a long time for me not to ride. So I am with him 4-6 days a week. I started him with general ring work, walk trot canter, ground poles, low jumps, lots of trail riding and lunging. Just to feel him out.

However, sense I moved him closer to me in July, he now gets at LEAST an hour of work like I said 4-6 days a week, for the past 8 months. Lots of lunging extended trot. When I ride him, I ride with a goal, no dilly dallying. Once again lots of trotting, some cantering. I currently am getting ready for show season barrel racing. It will be our first season. I looked up some exercises for that as well as some routines from fellow barrels friends. So I do lots of barrel work walk/ trot , bending and doing some square patterns with barrels. Trot/ canter with rollbacks, tons of circles small and big.

Unfortunately there are no hills in my area :/ so I can't do incline work with him....

That's generally it, so whats the verdict ? Anything else I can do ?

Last edited by LoveMyAppyx0o; 03-09-2012 at 12:28 AM.
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post #4 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 12:34 AM
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I'm personally not up on muscle building supplements, but as a starting point, I would work on some collection, which will strengthen the muscles all over, but especially the back, and will give his neck some definition. Extended trot will build endurance, but not visible muscling. I personally would also add cavaletti to the routine. I'm sure there is someone who will be on soon who will have a good idea for a flat arena and supplements!
Kathy
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post #5 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 12:38 AM Thread Starter
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thank you. Cavaletti and collection, got it. :) I appreciate your help.
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post #6 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 01:28 AM
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If he's only 5yo, he could be going through a lanky stage. Not assuming here, but he may have trouble building topline muscle if he's been worked too much/too early, especially in a heavy or imperfectly fitting saddle(youngsters are even harder to fit when they keep changing) I'd be doing lots of low impact exercise on the ground with him & not too much ridden work. I personally wouldn't be jumping or doing barrels or such until he was at least 6yo.
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post #7 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 09:40 AM
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I get my horse mucsled up by doing lots of trotting in a collected frame plus I spend 3 to 4 hours 6 days a week riding him. That time is spent at a trot plus we do have hills so lots of hill work also. He is also coming 9 year old not sure id push a 5 year old that hard. I don't keep him collected for real long peroids of time I also let him trot on a loose rein so he can stretch out. Don't think supplements will build mucsle and I wouldnt lunge him to much either. I don't think its good on the joints or their mind going round and round. Iv never have been a fan of lunging I do some lunging but very limited.
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post #8 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 12:31 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie View Post
If he's only 5yo, he could be going through a lanky stage. Not assuming here, but he may have trouble building topline muscle if he's been worked too much/too early, especially in a heavy or imperfectly fitting saddle
I think he is a lanky guy, your probably right there, but I don't think his top line is a problem. His round in his shoulders and filled out down his back to his hocks, however, I have been borrowing a friends saddle. Unfortunately, I don't really know how to tell if the saddle is a good fit. I need to figure that out so I can buy my own. He doesnt buck or show any signs or discomfort while im riding , but then again he is very tolerant.
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post #9 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by spirit88 View Post
I wouldnt lunge him to much either. I don't think its good on the joints or their mind going round and round. Iv never have been a fan of lunging I do some lunging but very limited.
I'm not a fan of the lunge line either, that's why I free lunge him in a big arena (not a round pen) I just keep him moving foreword in one direction or another, let him pick how big his circles are so its more natural. When I ride I only do smaller circles to get him to engage his hind end, and walk circles to get him bending and flexing.

I will start to ride more collected, seems a lot of people say it helps, no hills though =/ . I wish, the only hills I have are on pavement.
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post #10 of 28 Old 03-09-2012, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoveMyAppyx0o View Post
I think he is a lanky guy, your probably right there, but I don't think his top line is a problem. His round in his shoulders and filled out down his back to his hocks, however, I have been borrowing a friends saddle. Unfortunately, I don't really know how to tell if the saddle is a good fit. I need to figure that out so I can buy my own. He doesnt buck or show any signs or discomfort while im riding , but then again he is very tolerant.
I know first hand about saddle fit the saddle I was using on my horse was to narrow across the withers my horse never complained. I did get a saddle that fits now but he never once showed signs of it hurting him. So you can't go by how your horse acts about the saddle some just never make a fuss about it. My mare on the other hand lets me know when a saddle isnt fitting she goes into a broncing fit with ears flat back.
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