So I ride western, and my mare has recently had some substantial time off due to an injury. I'm about to get her back into VERY light work. But, her topline has always been a bit of a challenge to keep in shape. I *hope* it was in part due to her Vitamin E deficiency!! So, I am wondering what are some good exercises for topline and hindquarters. I don't ride english, but if any of you english friends have something that works, share it!! Keep in mind though, my mare works off of very light contact and is very soft in her mouth....or at least she was before her accident lol I really want to keep her that way. So I don't necessarily want to keep constant contact, but I also don't want to nag her to death :/ Also, I know rollbacks and stuff are good, but I got to be really easy on her hocks. So, I need some unique ideas!! Lol Thank you guys in advance!
That's already on my list of things to do! I always heard long trotting up hills is great for butt workout. But I was told my horses vet/chiro to long/extended walk up them would be better for her? She is just now coming off stall rest for a soft tissue (RH) and possible back injury. But I hear walking can strengthen tendons?
Yes, walking can strengthen just about every part of your horse. Not a meandering loose rein walk, a good connected marching walk. Obviously take is slower with a horse coming off injury, but you will be able to feel when he's ready to do more. Start with smaller inclines and a slightly looser rein and work up to more varied terrain and a good working walk.
I like to work my mare really collected and deep in her frame in walk or trot [you may find trot easier if your horse is a slug !] and then basically throw the reins at her to stretch down. When she does this she stretches over the back and her hind legs step farther under her. I do this for a couple circles, making sure she maintains bend and doesnt run off before picking her back up.