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Wallaby 03-24-2010 03:22 PM

Improving balance?
 
Lacey's balance is currently one of her biggest issues. She doesn't trip often or stumble a lot but just watching her move, you can tell that she doesn't feel as comfortable as one would hope on her feet.

She has been improving, I have a video from the summer that I just rewatched (and was shocked by how unsteady she appeared) and I can get one from more recently if anyone wants to see where she's at.

I just want some tips to help her get even more balanced and steady. Right now I've been doing a bunch of changes of direction, working in areas that aren't completely flat, and that's about it. I've tried incorporating trot poles but she can barely make it over two more than once without tripping over them...

Ideas?

NittanyEquestrian 03-24-2010 03:48 PM

Do you have any idea why she is wobbly? I realize she is older so maybe arthritis? Have you had a massage therapist or chiropractor look at her? At her age I would say it's most likely a physical problem...but one that SHOULD be able to at least be helped with exercises and strengthening. If she's sound and rideable which I'm assuming she is then I would ride hills, walk up and then down. IF she's strong enough trot up and then down them. Hill work will really tone and develop muscle on her haunches which is usually the source of balance problems. The other thing I would suggest, if you aren't already is some sort of anti-inflammatory supplement just because it can't hurt. I know of a good one called BL Solution. Comes in liquid or pellets, I've never had a horse refuse it and it has devils claw, yucca and B-12 in it so it helps naturally reduce inflammation, helps maintain synovial fluid and just all around makes them feel a little better. Taking dressage lessons is also another key to helping balance problems. With an unbalanced horse all the amateur exercises in the world aren't going to help if you don't have knowledgeable eyes on the ground finding the problem, tweaking exercises, helping you to help her, etc. I would definitely do the chiro/massage whatever is available in your area just to find a baseline with which to work from. They aren't terribly expensive especially if it's a one time or a few times a year thing and they can be invaluable when working with things like this.


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