Hello, everybody! I am trying to strengthen my horses back up because he is getting a tiny bit of muscle wastage! And its not from my saddle or any of my tack!!! It's because he hasn't been ridden in 2weeks and he is usually ridden everyday! And, I would like to use a straight quilted pad on him comfortably! I'm not overweight for him but, I am on a diet! And, would lungeing him tacked up with a neck relaxer (pulls their head down), build up the strength in their back or is it something that needs to be done some other way? I'm working on hillwork and it is helping a little bit. I am also working on his posture with some loose draw reins and loping and trotting like that! He seems to naturally reach down with his neck when I saddle him up with a strait numnah! I don't know if he is trying to use his back more or if it is hurting him! Can you answer a couple of my questions PLEASE! I feel like I'm on the right track! He was swayback when I biught him 3 years ago and he just has a bit of a dip now so, I must be doing something right! He also needs to lose about 50lbs. So could that be the problem as well!?! Thanx!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ditto to Spirithorse. Gadgets aren't necessary. Hillwork, maybe some correct
classical dressage exercises to help his posture. All you need are a well fitting saddle, a snaffle bridle, and protective boots if you want them.
If you know that he's losing muscle because of his 2 week break, why not just get back into a normal exercise routine?
How old is your horse? If he had a swayback, things internally are probably never going to be as strong as they had been before the swayback developed, no matter how good things look. A recurred breakdown can come easier, and topline condition can deteriorate faster over a break than for a horse without a swayback history.
Losing a little weight can make things look better, as far as the appearance of his topline. Especially with a "hay belly" situation, the extra weight can pull down and stretch the skin, tendons, etc. It's probably for the best that he lose the weight anyway. (Unless you live in an area that has horrible, long, cold, snowy winters, as I do, in which case I like my horses being a bit chubby this time of year