Hi! I just started leasing a horse that is completely out of shape. He's a 5 year old TB gelding, retired from racing from a chip in his knee. His mom did have surgery one and the chip was removed and he's been very sound since that (about two years ago). His mom then had to get knee surgery and is recovering still so he hasn't really been worked since last December she told me. I just started my lease Monday, sadly I had to find a new english saddle, she just had an old western one that I didn't careto use. So past few days I've just been going bareback. I've been just walking him around the ring, going over a few ground polls, and set up some cones today to weave through. I tried to lightly trot him today (in the 50 min ride maybe 3-5min of trotting). I'm just worried of trying to work him too hard.
Am I on the right path of getting him back in shape though? A lot of walking and light trotting till he feels like he can handle more? I read ground poles are great for rebuilding his muscles too and working on figure 8's and weaving helps get him flexible again.
Any input would be a great help! He's a sweet boy, I just want to make sure I don't work him too hard since he's had so much time off and I've never gotten on a horse so out of shape!