Where does he need to gain muscle?
Hey guys, I already had a thread under Nutrition about trying to get some extra weight on my gelding but now I feel like I need some advice on getting him more fit. I am planning to show him a bit this summer (I’ve only showed once before so we aren’t doing anything too advanced.) I’d like to show him in halter, trail, and maybe some western pleasure type classes. He is a 14-year-old Quarter Horse by the way. I have included some current pics of him (taken yesterday.) Where does he need the most muscle improvement and what are some good ways for me to help him gain those muscles? I know he needs some topline work, so please give me advice on that especially. (Just a note, sorry he’s kind of muddy, in southern Indiana it has been raining so much that I can’t hardly keep him clean long enough to get photos of him lol)
His butt is still fairly muscly! LOL
He actually needs muscle everywhere. topline, rearend, shoulder, and neck and his chest.
What SketchyHorse said about the hill work. If your in southern IN it shouldn't be hard for you to find a place nearby to get him out on the trails. Henryville & Deam are probably the two best places I know of that really makes them work. Just make sure he's in shape before you ride there. I also recommend shoes because most people that I know who try to take their horses barefoot there end up with footsore horses after the first day. Brown County and Midwest are good places to start his conditioning. It's been so long since I've been to Harrison-Crawford that I really don't remember what those trails are like. Foggy memory says they're relatively easy but beautiful scenery.
Agree with the above. As a riding horse, you want to do hill work...lots. For non-riding horses, lots of round pen work. Feed high quality hay and high protein feed.
In the QH/Paint world around here, if you want to show halter, the 'classic' stocky QH look still rules. Here is our halter bred (Impressive) "Mandy" to compare muscling...
The hill work is a great idea. On the flat, do long and low work, making him work from back to front.
Transitions are fantastic, too- especially downwards transitions. walk-halt, trot-walk, trot-halt, canter-trot, and, later, when he's ready, canter-walk and canter-halt.
edit- He's a handsome boy, he just needs weight and muscle- I hope you share your progress with us!
Thanks for all the advice! It looks like he and I need to hit some hills! lol I have another question. I'm trying to put more weight on him so should I be working on his muscling quite a bit while I'm working on putting weight on him? Or should I try to get him a little fatter before I work with him too much on gaining muscle? Sorry, I've never worked on bulking up a horse before so I'm not sure what method is best for him, health-wise.
Just make sure you provide a higher calorie diet to compensate for the work. I can't wait to see how he turns out.
^^^ Yes, and I would give all the hay he can eat.
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****! DAT A$$! That is a GREAT QH hind end.
I would follow the advice of that horses trainer down to a T. Results speak for themselves.
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