Help my Pony's Neck? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 06:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Banjo4blue View Post
Does he look better here than in the before pictures:

And yes Im riding in snow, that was Christmas day and I rode for about five minuets, and he's barefoot and snow did not ball in his hoofs.
Your picture angle makes it hard to "see" any noticeable changes happening but you can feel them and should be seeing.
I offer a word of caution that you not take a pony who rides in front of the vertical to one is behind the vertical...many dressage horses now do not ride "technically" correct but what is now the new normal and fad look...yes, even upper level horses.
If you placed a rules down the front on your ponies face it should hang straight with the facial bone touching it continuously not have gaps because the horse is behind the vertical.
I found you this which is a decent illustration of what it should be, should not be and we got a problem...

Now add one more idea in your head that on the vertical would be that line directly down the nose and face...
It may not be fashionable but is far kinder to the animal and safer for you and the animal to ride slightly ahead or on the vertical, not the other options.

As for riding in the snow...by all means do and ENJOY!!
Great fun and will not hurt anyone to go for a nice walk...just bundle you up and watch for ice balls in the feet otherwise...have at it!!
Good luck.
...
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post #12 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by horselovinguy View Post
You're not to big for the pony weight wise as ponies can carry more than many horses technically.
Meant to ask about this HLG, but forgot, till the subject came up in 'real life' yesterday...

Firstly, as said earlier, I agree OP is not necessarily too big for the pony. Tho depending what she asks of him, etc. I do think she will be too big if she gets much bigger.

You occasionally hear people say this, but what reasoning is behind it? Have there ever been any studies done that show ponies are anything other than little horses? I just can't see why they would be innately stronger, more able to carry weight than their larger counterparts. I imagine, just like big horses, it's more about their build, maturity, fitness, etc, etc as to how much they might carry healthily. Therefore the (*average of*) 20% guideline should no less apply.
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Some info I've found helpful; [COLOR=Lime][B]www.horseforum.com/horse-health/hoof-lameness-info-horse-owners-89836/
For taking critique pics; [COLOR=Lime][B]https://www.horseforum.com/members/41...res-128437.jpg
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post #13 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie View Post

You occasionally hear people say this, but what reasoning is behind it? Have there ever been any studies done that show ponies are anything other than little horses? I just can't see why they would be innately stronger, more able to carry weight than their larger counterparts. I imagine, just like big horses, it's more about their build, maturity, fitness, etc, etc as to how much they might carry healthily. Therefore the (*average of*) 20% guideline should no less apply.
Let's look at it from a physics POV, and add in some kinesiology.

This isn't true of all ponies, but it has to do with bone, shortness of back, and overall conformation. Ponies just tend to come in a "design plan" that lends itself well to carrying weight.

Typically, shorter horses with thicker bone and slightly coarser builds tend to be better weight carriers that something that is taller, but more finely built, with a longer back.

My favorite example of this concept are the Icelandic horses and native British ponies. Most Icelandics don't weigh much more than 800-900 lbs and rarely get over 14 hands, but the fact that they have thick bone, wide frames, and short-coupled backs means they don't have much trouble carrying people of a larger stature - most Icelandic horse rides for tourists top out at 225-250 lbs.

Think of it this way - if I'm carrying a heavy backpack, and choose to hold it out in front of me with my arms straight rather than on my back, that's going to tire me out a lot faster than carrying it close to my center of gravity, on my back.

If I have a load closer to my center of gravity, I can also use the bigger muscle groups in my back, hips, and legs to create the force I need to balance, since I'm now placing that load on what amounts to a pillar
instead of a string.

A pony has a closer center of gravity from each end of its body than an OTTB would. Therefore, it doesn't also need to lift and balance it's neck, back, and hindquarters in as big of a movement as something with a long, finer frame would, so with that too, you're also limiting the amount their muscles have to work to constantly re-adjust both their bodies and the load to stay in balance.

Basically, the force the pony has to exert might not be as great because it just doesn't need to make as many adjustments to stay in balance.

Can the TB become conditioned to be a weight carrier, and could the pony be a poor one if it's not conditioned right? Absolutely. But it would take a lot of work on the TB's part to condition the right muscle groups, and he'd still probably not have as much stamina as the pony, since his muscles will still need to make a lot more adjustments.
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Last edited by Mulefeather; 02-15-2018 at 05:59 PM.
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post #14 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 06:06 PM
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^I think it comes from many ponies being stocky and built to carry weight. My Icelandic is 12.3 and 730, I am a little bigger than the OP (5'3" and 150) and do not at all look large on her and definitely don't bother her weight wise, she also takes up my leg so while they are slightly below her belly it doesn't look awkward. The OP does not appear too large for the pony weight wise but is definitely pushing it in terms of height/legginess- which is absolutely fine as long as both her and the pony are happy (and they appear to be) but it's also not "ideal". So yes, I agree *many* ponies can carry more than an average horse- as many ponies are built more like cobs than horses. This guy is not...and plenty of ponies are more like him than like cobs. So while I agree that SOME are weight carries it's still proportional, and there are plenty that are not with an average, or light build..

I don't know how tall this guy is but seeing how big the OP looks on him I would hesitate to ride him myself, I think just that tiny bit of extra height/weight would be too much, especially as I look far more proportional on my 12.3hh... he's what 11.2? maybe? Not big.

Anyways. I agree the OP is fine, but am in accord with @loosie on this, just because it's small doesn't mean it's strong, that doesn't make sense...at all.

@OP just ride him correctly and regularly... if he's already dropping his head and rounding at his own that's telling me you are. I would say to put a little more weight on his mouth, just a light steady contact to encourage him to drop, then more leg to encourage him to round, but don't get stuck on headset, it's about lifting his back and stepping under, which will strengthen all his topline including his neck. That's really all there is to do, stretches aren't going to help. So riding him as I described will help as he has learned to move inverted and may need some encouragement to round, but sounds like he may be offering it on his own, which is even better, you really want self carriage and the riding should just maintain what he does and encourage it, not try to force it. Just take him up on the offer ;)

He is very cute!
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post #15 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 06:13 PM
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^Yes, I well understand about build, length of back, solidness of bone, etc. But the assumption is made that 'ponies are stronger than horses' which seems to be taken as regardless of breed or build. There are many fine-build ponies out there too... I mean, I doubt there's a difference in (proportional) weight carrying ability between a fine boned, leggy 'pony' & a taller 'horse' of similar build. Or of a stocky icelandic & a draft x...
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Some info I've found helpful; [COLOR=Lime][B]www.horseforum.com/horse-health/hoof-lameness-info-horse-owners-89836/
For taking critique pics; [COLOR=Lime][B]https://www.horseforum.com/members/41...res-128437.jpg
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post #16 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie View Post
^Yes, I well understand about build, length of back, solidness of bone, etc. But the assumption is made that 'ponies are stronger than horses' which seems to be taken as regardless of breed or build. There are many fine-build ponies out there too... I mean, I doubt there's a difference in (proportional) weight carrying ability between a fine boned, leggy 'pony' & a taller 'horse' of similar build. Or of a stocky icelandic & a draft x...
I think the assumption is just that - an assumption, just like people assume one breed can't do X, or another breed is the only thing that can do Y, etc etc.
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post #17 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 07:19 PM
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Not to hijack the OP's thread, but about the pony weight carrying thing. I heard it out this way once...think of a suspension bridge. The closer the supports are and the shorter the span the stronger it is. Typically, a pony will have a shorter span and closer supports than a similarly built horse just because of its size. It's the same reason a short backed horse is conformationally more suited to riding.

OP I'm going to be working with my new pony (she's 13-3HH) on lots of trotting and hills. Lateral work in hand also does a good job of getting them to lift their shoulders and out more weight on their haunches. Soft contact will probably do your boy wonders if he was ridden with heavy/unsteady hands as a School horse. My rescue Curly mare has benefitted from lungeing. I focus on long and low with her relaxing her back and lowering her head. She's naturally a bit high headed with a bit of an ewe neck. Her biggest issue is wanting to rush around. I don't know if your boy has this issue too, but if he tends to stick his nose up in the air and rush around, working on confidence building on the lunge-line can help. It sounds like you're doing right by him!

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post #18 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 08:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips. I think if I just keep doing what I'm doing with him he will continue to develop muscle. At the lesson barn he stopped getting used much and was just sitting, so he was a little out of shape when I got him. But he is feeling fantastic now!
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Last edited by Banjo4blue; 02-15-2018 at 08:47 PM.
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post #19 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yogiwick View Post
^I think it comes from many ponies being stocky and built to carry weight. My Icelandic is 12.3 and 730, I am a little bigger than the OP (5'3" and 150) and do not at all look large on her and definitely don't bother her weight wise, she also takes up my leg so while they are slightly below her belly it doesn't look awkward. The OP does not appear too large for the pony weight wise but is definitely pushing it in terms of height/legginess- which is absolutely fine as long as both her and the pony are happy (and they appear to be) but it's also not "ideal". So yes, I agree *many* ponies can carry more than an average horse- as many ponies are built more like cobs than horses. This guy is not...and plenty of ponies are more like him than like cobs. So while I agree that SOME are weight carries it's still proportional, and there are plenty that are not with an average, or light build..

I don't know how tall this guy is but seeing how big the OP looks on him I would hesitate to ride him myself, I think just that tiny bit of extra height/weight would be too much, especially as I look far more proportional on my 12.3hh... he's what 11.2? maybe? Not big.

Anyways. I agree the OP is fine, but am in accord with @loosie on this, just because it's small doesn't mean it's strong, that doesn't make sense...at all.

@OP just ride him correctly and regularly... if he's already dropping his head and rounding at his own that's telling me you are. I would say to put a little more weight on his mouth, just a light steady contact to encourage him to drop, then more leg to encourage him to round, but don't get stuck on headset, it's about lifting his back and stepping under, which will strengthen all his topline including his neck. That's really all there is to do, stretches aren't going to help. So riding him as I described will help as he has learned to move inverted and may need some encouragement to round, but sounds like he may be offering it on his own, which is even better, you really want self carriage and the riding should just maintain what he does and encourage it, not try to force it. Just take him up on the offer ;)

He is very cute!
He is 13.1 hh. I think it's strange everyone keeps saying I look tall and leggy on him...never would have thought that, lol? I also would like to gently remind people that if wanted judgement and critique on how big I look on my pony, I would have made a thread on it. ;) But thank you guys for all your interesting opinions and knowledge, it sounds like I'm doing everything right and do not need to change the way I do things.
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post #20 of 32 Old 02-15-2018, 08:51 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Meant to ask about this HLG, but forgot, till the subject came up in 'real life' yesterday...

Firstly, as said earlier, I agree OP is not necessarily too big for the pony. Tho depending what she asks of him, etc. I do think she will be too big if she gets much bigger.

You occasionally hear people say this, but what reasoning is behind it? Have there ever been any studies done that show ponies are anything other than little horses? I just can't see why they would be innately stronger, more able to carry weight than their larger counterparts. I imagine, just like big horses, it's more about their build, maturity, fitness, etc, etc as to how much they might carry healthily. Therefore the (*average of*) 20% guideline should no less apply.

Maybe you could make a new thread to discuss ponies and weight carrying? I am not going to grow anymore and I have been riding this pony for years and never had a problem, okay everyone? LOL.

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