rounding out the front legs - Page 2
   

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rounding out the front legs

This is a discussion on rounding out the front legs within the Jumping forums, part of the English Riding category
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    04-25-2009, 06:19 PM
  #11
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by MIEventer    
What the? I've never heard of any Trainer discuss stretching your horses legs before riding. I can see pulling their legs up and forward to adjust the girth to prevent skalls - but not for getting a horse to round their legs over a fence.

TUCKING properly at a fence, comes by proper work through Grids. GM and other top level riders talk about raising the fences, too many school grids over too small of fences, which creates a "Lazy" jumper.

BUT!!!! Riders form on approach to the fence, the riders legs and seat makes a HUGE differnce as well. We must always remain supportive through our legs, aiding in lifting our horses backs and ribs up into us. We must keep them rounded and engaged through our seat and into our legs - engaged, rhythmic, on approach to the fence. Our horses must always be off their forehand.

When we see riders with incorrect leather lengths and unconditioned legs *Not wrapped around our horses girths* we allow our horses to go flat, on the forehand - which aids in a sloppy jumper.

That is what the 1/2 hour of Dressage Work is meant to do - To aid our postions, our aids. To allow our horses to stretch, to achieve balance, rhythm. Riders achieve control, tempo, fluid movement.

All this aids - in a better jumper.
Just because you haven't heard of it doesn't mean its wrong.
At the show barn I used to ride at almost everybody did it.
Think about it athletes stretch themselves why shouldn't horses.
If a horse is stiff (despite a good warmup) they will be uncomfortable with pulling their knees up. If they already have had them stretched then they will move more loosely.
I was recommended to do this by a message therepest with my tb mare because of the tendency for tbs to pull their hamstrings.
When a hors pulls a tendon it because of the drastic flexon exhibited. If you get the horse used to the flexon gradually they will be able to do it without injury.
It is merely giving them the best chance of pulling their knees up.
It is very effactive.
     
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    04-25-2009, 06:22 PM
  #12
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by MIEventer    
What the? I've never heard of any Trainer discuss stretching your horses legs before riding. I can see pulling their legs up and forward to adjust the girth to prevent skalls - but not for getting a horse to round their legs over a fence.

TUCKING properly at a fence, comes by proper work through Grids. GM and other top level riders talk about raising the fences, too many school grids over too small of fences, which creates a "Lazy" jumper.

Some horses will naturally "round out" others will require a lot of exercises to get them to pick up their feet but as MI Eventer said good grid work is usually a very rewarding exercise.

Here a horse in its first 3 months of jumping is doing small jumps with good leg positioning.

     
    04-25-2009, 06:25 PM
  #13
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyder    
Some horses will naturally "round out" others will require a lot of exercises to get them to pick up their feet but as MI Eventer said good grid work is usually a very rewarding exercise.

Here a horse in its first 3 months of jumping is doing small jumps with good leg positioning.

I'm not saying that stretching should replace grid work. I'm say that in addition it will help. Grid work is alot for the mind. The stretching makes the horse capable to do the grid work smoothly and without injury.
     
    04-25-2009, 06:26 PM
  #14
Trained
I have a TB and a Message Therapist for him, and a Chiro - never heard of that. I grew up riding and training TB's and I've never stretched their legs before I rode. If you want to stretch your horses legs, fly at her.

A horse strengthens their tendons and muscles, by doing proper and correct dressage work on a daily basis. Majority of GP riders spend 6 days a week doing only that - and that is what builds up their flexion and and everything else. Not jumping on a daily basis.

What breaks down horses, is when a rider thinks jumping is the be all and end all of their daily riding. Proper conditioning is the key to prevention and preservation.


Daily hacking is also extremely benefitial. Builds a well rounded, well physiqued horse - with less likely to injur itself.

Proper educated riding is what prevents a horse from pulling muscles, hamstrings and tendons.

Beautiful horse Spyder!!!
     
    04-25-2009, 06:38 PM
  #15
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by MIEventer    
I have a TB and a Message Therapist for him, and a Chiro - never heard of that. I grew up riding and training TB's and I've never stretched their legs before I rode. If you want to stretch your horses legs, fly at her.

A horse strengthens their tendons and muscles, by doing proper and correct dressage work on a daily basis. Majority of GP riders spend 6 days a week doing only that - and that is what builds up their flexion and and everything else. Not jumping on a daily basis.

What breaks down horses, is when a rider thinks jumping is the be all and end all of their daily riding. Proper conditioning is the key to prevention and preservation.


Daily hacking is also extremely benefitial. Builds a well rounded, well physiqued horse - with less likely to injur itself.

Proper educated riding is what prevents a horse from pulling muscles, hamstrings and tendons.

Beautiful horse Spyder!!!


I think the key to not having your horse break down in addition to that. Is stretching. My physical therapist stressed to me how much it is necessary. If you look at a mri of a horse that has been stretched and a horse that has not you can see the difference. On the horse that hasn't you see lots of scar damage on the horse that has been stretched all its life you see alot less.

Warmup. Vs. Stretching

Much of this confusion comes from a misinterpretation of research on warm up. These studies found that warming by itself has no effect on range of motion, but that when the warm up is followed by stretching there is an increase in range of motion."

Source
Herbert RD, de Noronha M. Stretching to prevent or reduce muscle soreness after exercise. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 4.
Andersen, J. C. Stretching Before and After Exercise: Effect on Muscle Soreness and Injury Risk. Journal of Athletic Training 40(2005): 218-220
Witvrouw, Erik, Nele Mahieu, Lieven Danneels, and Peter McNair. Stretching and Injury Prevention An Obscure Relationship. Sports Medicine 34.7(2004): 443-449
Ian Shrier MD, PhD and Kav Gossal MD. The Myths and Truths of Stretching: Individualized Recommendations for Healthy Muscles, The Physician and Sportsmedicine, VOL 28, #8, August 2000.

     
    04-25-2009, 06:57 PM
  #16
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trissacar    

I think the key to not having your horse break down in addition to that. Is stretching. My physical therapist stressed to me how much it is necessary. If you look at a mri of a horse that has been stretched and a horse that has not you can see the difference. On the horse that hasn't you see lots of scar damage on the horse that has been stretched all its life you see alot less.
Warmup. Vs. Stretching
Much of this confusion comes from a misinterpretation of research on warm up. These studies found that warming by itself has no effect on range of motion, but that when the warm up is followed by stretching there is an increase in range of motion."
I actually agree that stretching is good but I am not sure that your and my idea of stretching is the same. That horse in that picture was 6 at the time it was taken. He already had a reserve championship in dressage under his belt and to me it is the combination of good stretching (and collection) exercises that allowed him to express a natural leg position that is close to what is desired. I certainly wouldn't be warming him up, jumping off and doing leg stretches before going over jumps after. Dressage incorporates stretching exercises as just part of dressage so at least in my case his "stretching" is already incorporated into his warmup.


Quote:
Originally Posted by MIEventer    
A horse strengthens their tendons and muscles, by doing proper and correct dressage work on a daily basis. Majority of GP riders spend 6 days a week doing only that - and that is what builds up their flexion and and everything else. Not jumping on a daily basis.

Beautiful horse Spyder!!!
Thanks. He went on a few months later to beat Tommy Gayford's daughter in his first competition at the 3'6" height (placed 3 in the jump off). Obviously what I have been doing with him was right as he competed at the "A" circuit and has a Jumper Horse of the Year award from the AWS. He kinda got the Dressage Horse of the year as well.

He is 17 years old now and never turned a lame foot.

     
    04-25-2009, 07:07 PM
  #17
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyder    
I actually agree that stretching is good but I am not sure that your and my idea of stretching is the same. That horse in that picture was 6 at the time it was taken. He already had a reserve championship in dressage under his belt and to me it is the combination of good stretching (and collection) exercises that allowed him to express a natural leg position that is close to what is desired. I certainly wouldn't be warming him up, jumping off and doing leg stretches before going over jumps after. Dressage incorporates stretching exercises as just part of dressage so at least in my case his "stretching" is already incorporated into his warmup.




Thanks. He went on a few months later to beat Tommy Gayford's daughter in his first competition at the 3'6" height (placed 3 in the jump off). Obviously what I have been doing with him was right as he competed at the "A" circuit and has a Jumper Horse of the Year award from the AWS. He kinda got the Dressage Horse of the year as well.

He is 17 years old now and never turned a lame foot.

I think both stretching the back under saddle and before and after a workout is important. We do alot of that extending and collecting. Along with shoulders in and out leg yielding and haunches in sometimes. My horse rarely goes lame and has never pulled a tendon or ligament.
That pic with the horse has a nice bascule and knees!
     
    04-25-2009, 07:25 PM
  #18
Weanling
What I meant to say was
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trissacar    
I think both stretching the back under saddle >and hand< stretching before and after a workout is important. We do alot of that extending and collecting. Along with shoulders in and out leg yielding and haunches in sometimes. My horse rarely goes lame and has never pulled a tendon or ligament.
That pic with the horse has a nice bascule and knees!
     
    04-25-2009, 10:17 PM
  #19
Trained
Hmm... I stretch my horse all the time. I'd like to point out that you can't stretch a "cold" horse too much, because it's more likely to hurt something. The stretching afterward is more important, it will help keep horses from getting stiff and it keeps them flexible. I think by just picking your horse's foot up and bending the knee as much as comfortable might help, as well as bringing the front leg up to his chest as best you can.

If you think about, if someone wants to learn to do the splits, they have to stretch a lot to loosen the muscles and joints and whatever else that's stretchable, and while it won't make for immediate results, it will eventually prove beneficial. So if you stretch your horse after you ride, his legs will be looser and will make it that much more comfortable for him to use them the way you want. I'm not saying the good dressage work as well as grid work won't work without stretching, but it will help make your horse more comfortable. But just because someone goes and jogs and does a bunch of leg excercises doesn't mean that person can go to a perfect split that first time.

I also agree with everyone that says he will tuck better when the fences get higher. He is probably lazy because he's bored. If you do the same routine whenever you ride him, I'd change it up. Go for a hack, do a solid dressage schooling, work on trot poles or cavelettes [sp?], just mix it up.

Good luck, I hope something someone posted in the thread will help you out!
     
    04-26-2009, 07:21 AM
  #20
Trained
I will stretch Nelson after a good ride. I do the Carrot Stretches - make him stretch his neck around towards his rump to the right, to the left. Then I make him bow by making him stretch his neck down and under himself - but that's after a ride.

So I understand what you are saying.

Before I ride, I don't. I incorporate bending and turns and shoulder in's and out's when we do our walking stages during our warmup.

I believe not many focus on walking when they ride, and I remember when Bill Hoos stated that at a clinic I rode in with him and since that day, I incorportated allot more at the walk - and I believe that is where the stretching occurs - the muscles warm up, and that prepares our horses for the rest of the workout.
     

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