pain in calf after lessons - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 35 Old 02-06-2017, 09:36 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, so here's the thing, if I stand with the ball of my foot on the edge of my fireplace (that way I can hold onto the mantle) and push my heels down, it feels fine. But if I spread my legs apart as if I were on a horse, and bend my knees, OUCH! The only way to make the pain go away in my right mid-calf is to twist my ankle inward. And then it feels fine. That doesn't seem right... I should be able to keep my leg straight. So those wedges might work, but if I'm twisting my ankle to relieve the pain in my calf, won't I just cause other problems in my leg?
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post #22 of 35 Old 02-06-2017, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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This is pretty funny. I thought I would take pictures of my legs to show you what I mean. So I took a picture with my legs "straight" and then turned my ankle a little to relieve the pain I feel in my calf. Turns out what I thought was straight is not straight at all. My right leg is always turned a little bit to the outside.

So this is me thinking my legs are both straight (first pic), and then intentionally relieving the pain by turning my ankle in a bit. You can barely see a difference. This tells me my right leg is always twisted even when I think it isn't. I'm guessing this is something I'm going to have to discuss with the osteopath/physiotherapist. At my age, it's unlikely I'll be able to completely fix it, and it's not like I'm going to compete or anything. But maybe there is room for improvement. P.S. don't mind the mess - my daughter likes to use the fireplace hearth as a craft table! :)
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post #23 of 35 Old 02-06-2017, 11:27 AM
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What an awesome post! I can use some of this info - I started having calf pain when riding after I purchased my new horse in Aug. Thought it was just having a new horse. In pics it looks like my toes are pointing outward when I ride her - I think it is because she is narrow up by her spine and really round in her barrel so my legs are not sure where to go!

Going to try some of these things to see if it helps (at least I will try them when the weather turns around here and I can ride!)
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post #24 of 35 Old 02-08-2017, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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Looks like my leg pictures scared everyone off! Just be thankful I cropped the top of the photo!

Just kidding... wanted to add that I rode Kodak today. I pulled the stirrups up as high as they go so I was in a similar position as I am on the lesson horse. No pain. I couldn't even make it hurt when I tried (I did two-point position, pretended to post - I could only walk because of the footing so I couldn't actually trot, but did the motions).

I'm going to bring my saddle to the lesson barn and see if that helps. Having gone through a few saddles, I can say that a lot of them do not put my legs in a good position. In case you didn't notice from the photos above, I have SHORT legs! This means my thighs are too short for the placement of most stirrup bars. So maybe the crappy lesson barn saddles are just really bad for my legs. Anyway, worth a shot this Saturday.
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post #25 of 35 Old 02-08-2017, 06:56 PM
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the photos of you standing look identical. are you sure you didn't post the same one twice?
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post #26 of 35 Old 02-08-2017, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
the photos of you standing look identical. are you sure you didn't post the same one twice?
Nope, if you click on the photo you'll see they have different names. But in my mind, my right leg is straight in the first pic.
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post #27 of 35 Old 02-08-2017, 08:51 PM
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I may be completely off here but I would venture to say that a lot of the leg "straightening" and positioning can be helped with better hip mobility and just pure muscle memory. Having tight hips and having unbalanced tight hips can really affect your foot and general leg position and can prevent you from proper leg position. Like you will not believe how much stronger you are and what better muscular engagement you'll get when your hips are more "open". Again, I may be totally off here but practicing hip mobility exercises never hurt anyone eh?

Also I haven't read through the second page of this thread so I am only going off the first and third pages. Sometimes we'll get into a bad habit of doing something either because we've never been corrected on it or we just slowly fell into it over time and suddenly it got to a point where it was just noticeably wrong. Then we have to make a very conscious effort every time we get on and ride to correct that behavior until it becomes natural. Anyhow, this was a very interesting thread from the bits I read and although I've never had this particular issue before, I have had certain leg pain due to improper leg positioning while riding.
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post #28 of 35 Old 02-09-2017, 08:09 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Triumvirate View Post
I may be completely off here but I would venture to say that a lot of the leg "straightening" and positioning can be helped with better hip mobility and just pure muscle memory. Having tight hips and having unbalanced tight hips can really affect your foot and general leg position and can prevent you from proper leg position. Like you will not believe how much stronger you are and what better muscular engagement you'll get when your hips are more "open". Again, I may be totally off here but practicing hip mobility exercises never hurt anyone eh?

Also I haven't read through the second page of this thread so I am only going off the first and third pages. Sometimes we'll get into a bad habit of doing something either because we've never been corrected on it or we just slowly fell into it over time and suddenly it got to a point where it was just noticeably wrong. Then we have to make a very conscious effort every time we get on and ride to correct that behavior until it becomes natural. Anyhow, this was a very interesting thread from the bits I read and although I've never had this particular issue before, I have had certain leg pain due to improper leg positioning while riding.
Agreed. I developed a tilted pelvis after my 2nd child (2 C-sections in less than 2 years + carrying a 2 yr old around on my hip while tending to my new baby). My sciatic nerve would lock up and cause incredible pain. I did some physio for a while, then stopped when I didn't have pain anymore, but that didn't straighten my pelvis. Years later, I did physio for my back and we realized my pelvis is off again. The physio also told me my hips are very tight. Have been doing some exercises, but clearly, the problem is still there to some extent.

I do think my legs feel different when I'm riding. My right leg seems farther forward than my left when I ride at home. Of course, given the pictures, this could all just be in my head. Will discuss it with the coach to see if she can see a difference.

I'm going to be seen by an osteopath next week so that will be interesting.

In the end though, while I want to have a correct riding position so I'm not a burden on my mare, I don't plan on ever showing so I'm not necessarily looking for perfection. As long as I'm balanced and don't have pain (which I don't when I ride at home), that's enough for me. At my age (46), it may be difficult to correct these irregularities.
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post #29 of 35 Old 02-11-2017, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
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Had a lesson today. I brought my own saddle this time. No pain! My right ankle did really hurt by the end, so this remains my weak leg. There is no lingering pain after the lesson though. I talked to my instructor about it and she suggested I turn my foot in a bit. She also told me to let her know if the pain in my calf was coming back at any time. But it didn't! So I guess I'll just keep bringing my own saddle. I assume that as I build more fitness in my legs, I'll be I'll get better and better at it.
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post #30 of 35 Old 02-11-2017, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
I have similar problem with rolling out on my outside ankle. This position is sometimes actually encouraged by dressage trainers.
My first dressage trainer DID encourage this. However, she was wrong about other stuff too, like forcing a horse into a frame, and she didn't truly know how to get them working over their back.
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