Building topline...where to start? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 06:33 AM Thread Starter
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
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Building topline...where to start?

I know that trot poles and hill work are great for building topline, but I would assume those would be for horses that are at least slightly fit. I also know that tummy lifts help. I love scratching a horse's stomach (I love the face a lot of them make) so that's easy to do.

So where should I start with building a topline in a horse that has had minimal riding time in the last few months? I just got his horse and am switching his feed over to pellet/beet pulp mix and trying to keep as much hay in front of him as possible. Hopefully that will help fill it in. I also read that protein is good for filling in the back, should the amount of protein (14%) in the grain be sufficient? Is there such a thing as a protein supplement, and would that be something to look into?

I am an expert lunger, so any lunge exercises I can do?

Thanks!

RH Queen O Anywhere "Sydney"
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 06:45 AM
Green Broke
 
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Sorry no help just subscribing. Im interested in some of the ideas people will have because I don't have any hills or trotting poles to work with.

My two horse Apache and Sammy are my world
along with our dogs Patch and Bear.
But I will always love you Jimmy R.I.P
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post #3 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 08:26 AM
Green Broke
 
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Hill work!!!!!! I start all mine with weeks and weeks and weeks of hill work at a walk. We start with a 20 min hack out and as thier fitness builds up we increase the length.

I brought stan back to work after 2 years of field rest (6 months of which was spent in a stable on full box rest). Started him with 15mins of walk up hills and built it up to 2 hours before starting trot work.

Hill work only works if you have the horse working properly in an outline.


ETa there is a big difference between topline and FAT. Top line is muscle and takes time to develop properly. Don't feed him too much protien as you invite lammi

Correct work in an outline or lunging in a passoa also helps. Bending, stretching and working long and low

RIDE your horse FORWARDS and keep him STRAIGHT


Last edited by faye; 03-27-2011 at 08:29 AM.
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post #4 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 08:44 AM
Green Broke
 
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You can find out how to do a lot of different stretches on youtube! I think they are very helpful.

Horses are scared of two things... Things that move and things that don't.
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 09:41 PM
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The only way to build top line muscle is to ride the horse in a connected working gait. Ride the horse correctly from back to front on the bit. Long and low seems to have the best bang for the buck. Trotting on uneven terrain does wonders. Small rolling hills are perfect.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 10:47 PM
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I heard boggy sand is good as well :)
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 10:49 PM
Green Broke
 
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I wouldnt suggest that RedTree, it put an awful lot of pressure on the tendons of the legs.

MyBoyPuck. I'e found when It comes to hills it is a case of the bigger and steeper the better! I live in a mountain range and all my in work horses have had fantastic topline simply from walking up and down these hills.

RIDE your horse FORWARDS and keep him STRAIGHT

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post #8 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 10:53 PM
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I'm sure the big hills work wonders too Faye. I wouldn't know because my state is mostly at sea level. I just know, when I started trotting my horse around on the rolling hills in my area, a short two weeks later I had built a machine. It worked wonders. Also, if the OP's horse is out of shape, I'd think start small and work up, literally maybe? (heh heh)

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 11:12 PM
Green Broke
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by faye View Post
I wouldnt suggest that RedTree, it put an awful lot of pressure on the tendons of the legs.

MyBoyPuck. I'e found when It comes to hills it is a case of the bigger and steeper the better! I live in a mountain range and all my in work horses have had fantastic topline simply from walking up and down these hills.
Oh I have been told it's good, most of the ground around here is sand, and it gets boggy really fast. I thought I would just make them lift there legs more?
Can you explain why it would put pressure on their legs?
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post #10 of 14 Old 03-27-2011, 11:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedTree View Post
Oh I have been told it's good, most of the ground around here is sand, and it gets boggy really fast. I thought I would just make them lift there legs more?
Can you explain why it would put pressure on their legs?
It's more the suction of the boggy sand. The horse's legs would just have to work that much harder to move along and it can stress the tendons. Maybe walking would be effective, but I definitely wouldn't trot or canter on heavy wet sand.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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