Side Reins?
 
 

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Side Reins?

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  • Will lunging with side reins build top line
  • Proper side reins topline

 
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    03-25-2010, 11:54 PM
  #1
Yearling
Question Side Reins?

I heard at a local barn that using sidereins while lunging can help build topline muscles. I tried some on my horse loosely while lunging him last time and he didn't seem to mind and he was reaching for contact and he looked beautiful. The side reins weren't tight or anything, he just moved much more nicely.

I don't want to use gimmicks, I just want to build some topline muscles on him and hopefully transfer the collection to saddle as well. Is this a good way to do it?
     
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    03-26-2010, 12:03 AM
  #2
Banned
Used correctly (and it sounds like that's what you did) they can be an excellent training tool. There have been a few debates on this forum about their usage, but like a lot of things, everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

As long as you know that they are not to be worn while riding (unless you are on a lunge with no reins, working on balance, seat, etc) they can be a tool to help build up a topline and make it easier for your horse to collect and use himself correctly, but of course whilst in the saddle, you have to do your part and ride correctly as well.
     
    03-26-2010, 10:39 AM
  #3
Foal
I've used them and seen some success I have also seen people not know how to use them and their horse reacts and flips. But horses can benefit from them if used correctly but not too long, specially when starting to build a topline.

My Chrio gave me exercises to do to build the topline and within a month it was SUCH a big difference. They were simple stretches that I had to do at first two times a day. Because I could only go to the barn once I did it before and after riding. They also help with their stomach muscle which is a large part for the horse to pick himself up and go round. If you are interested let me know!
     
    03-26-2010, 10:53 AM
  #4
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by ForrestGump    
I've used them and seen some success I have also seen people not know how to use them and their horse reacts and flips. But horses can benefit from them if used correctly but not too long, specially when starting to build a topline.

My Chrio gave me exercises to do to build the topline and within a month it was SUCH a big difference. They were simple stretches that I had to do at first two times a day. Because I could only go to the barn once I did it before and after riding. They also help with their stomach muscle which is a large part for the horse to pick himself up and go round. If you are interested let me know!
im interested to know these stretches you speak of! :)
     
    03-26-2010, 10:59 AM
  #5
Foal
I prefer to long rein and be the rider on the ground for the same effect..thats just me. But with anything topline takes awhile to build.

Using the inideside side rein to get the horse to flex to the inside with also help with collection in the saddle.
     
    03-26-2010, 11:03 AM
  #6
Started
Quote:
Originally Posted by FoxyRoxy1507    
im interested to know these stretches you speak of! :)
Ditto!
     
    03-26-2010, 11:10 AM
  #7
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by FoxyRoxy1507    
im interested to know these stretches you speak of! :)
Haha sure enough. I will try this again. My internet randomly shut down, and I was so close to the end. Okay there are three stretches.

1- Standing facing the horses withers. Take both hands and place them where the girth lies under his stomach. Start to "tickle" the area and you should immediately notice him life his back up. Once he has slide your hand, the one closest to the hind end, towards his sheath area and stop about 6ins before. I know it on my horse where he has a cow lick of hair. "tickle that spot to make him hold the lift on his on. Do it for 30 seconds and release. Do them in reps of 30. As your horse starts to gain muscle you can add on seconds to the reps, I do it in increments of 10. Over all he should look like he's arching his back up, just make sure he isn't leaning on your hands, but using his stomach and you will be able to feel the difference.

2- Stand behind the horse, if you are worried he might kick stand parallel to his hind leg. Place each hand on either side of his hip bone at the top of his rump ( ie, Sacroiliac area) "Tickle" him there as well and slowly slide your hands down so that each hand is on one side of his tail on his hind-end (butt area). Hold it for 30 seconds and release. Do it in reps of 3 and also add seconds like above as muscle builds. He should tuck his butt under him as he does this stretch and lift his lower back.

3 - I always end with a carrot stretch to loosen all the muscles I just worked. This one is pretty simple, take a treat, carrot, grain, etc and starting on the left side coax his head to stretch and reach his stomach with the treat. Hold it for 15 seconds and release. Switch to the other side and do the same process. Do each side three times alternating. This will also relax his next muscle and encourage him to go long and low to help build that top line as well.

Like I said I have seen a significant difference within a month for many horses and sometimes it may even take 2 months depending on how much he has already. But for him to really use that top line, the hind end, stomach and neck also need to be relaxed and muscled!!

Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!
     
    03-26-2010, 11:39 AM
  #8
Weanling
I've had some good results using side reins, but they are best used correctly and humanely. I also noticed a better change if I mixed it up during our sessions, snapped them on, then off, then on again. They are best used in conjunction with other exercises and methods to improve the topline and hindquarter engagement, IME. I've found that tackling an issue relying solely on equipment very rarely works, I've had the chiropractor and a special farrier out recently to work with me towards better whole-body movement. I received alot of useful information when I had a similiar question about side reins, when I first started out with them. You can read about it here:

Side Reins: Your general opinions appreciated

ForrestGump, those are the same exercises my chiro gave me! They are called cat-backs, wither lifts, and tail pulls. She also showed me cross-fiber friction exercises which you do along the length of the back to increase blood flow and oxygen. It's also helped me to lift and stretch the legs forward in the opposite direction that she is used to and hold it for a couple of seconds. I call this "horsey yoga". I've tried about every carrot stretch position I can feasibly imagine, lol. Now I need to play some meta-physical music while we stretch.
     

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