Very interesting thread!
I started long slow distance training on my gelding last year. Lots of slow jogs, faster trots. Very little cantering until this year and not much of that. I had knee surgery last year so I am very careful mounting and dismounting.
In October I woke up one morning and my legs were going every where but where I wanted them to. I ran into the wall.
The following week I was riding and leaned over to put a treat just a little lower than hip level on a sign my cousin's horse was refusing to go around. When I did, my entire back was zinged with a electric shock...and again when dismounting. Lots of shocks ensued over the next few weeks - made my legs weak as a kitten. Then I started having trouble walking. I walked like I had had a stroke (these are my cousin's words - she is an RN and the director of a huge ER here) I was not in pain but having alot of trouble walking.
Riding actually made me feel better and able to walk better when I dismounted. I had an MRI and exrays. I had inflammation and some degeneration. I was sent to neuro surgeon and he said it could be a zillion things from MS to bulging discs and had to have another MRI of the thoracic and cervical spine in contrast and a bazillion blood tests. Still riding and still saying it felt better after trotting but I have been losing my balance when riding and pitching forward. Bless my horse...when he feels me lose my balance he stops in his tracks. (he is an angel
Went back Friday - blood work normal for a everything. He said some bulging discs in the neck but that is not the problem. I can't balance and will fall backward at times. He said on the MS it is a 50/50 chance but I am older than one is when normally diagnosed. (never so glad to be an old bat in my life - I will soon be 54). I have some narrowing in T10 and T12 vertebra's. Looks like they have been slightly indented.
Hubby asked about riding and he said he didn't want me bouncing up and down and that I could only WALK. So the next day I went riding with nurse cousin (I was lucky I wasn't on a lead rope in the arena with Nurse Rachet) and we walked our normal 8.3 mile ride.
OMG I was so sore when we got off - way more than I was trotting. My feet and legs have been numb for several weeks and they were worse. My hips were numb.
I definitely feel BETTER when jogging my horse - no speed demon stuff - no chasing cows, running barrels or jumping. We trail ride.
I have to take a light test for MS and a needle nerve test where they will stick all the needles with electric shocks...that is next week.
Whatever it is - I want it to go away. It is interfering with my riding. I can normally ride for miles at a jog/trot and still can if the doctor would allow!
My walking is still all over the place and difficult. I am not in pain though thank God.