Winter is fast approaching and for those of us without access to indoor riding facilities, the dark nights significantly limit our riding time and make it difficult to keep our horses in condition.
However, just because you are not able to do intensive anaerobic work outs, does not mean your horse has to lose his core strength. In fact it is vital that we work hard to keep this, as it takes much longer to regain and without it your horse is more open to serious injury. Winter is a prime opportunity to concentrate on those postural bad habits (crookedness, asymmetrical dominance, hollowness etc) and focusing on these areas is a great way to make the most of your shorter riding sessions. A little and often riding programme is the key to this, utilising exercises which activate the deep postural muscles that stabilise your horse’s pelvis and spine.
These exercises have been proven so effective by research at Michigan State University that horses out of their normal exercise regime who performed dynamic mobilisation exercises every day, were able to maintain nearly 80% of the tone in their para-spinal muscles compared to horses in full training. This not only aids your horse’s health and well being but makes the transfer back into the summer months so much easier.
Claire Perras has recently returned to Aberdeen from Calgary, Canada and is now available for equine massage therapy, myofascial release and photonic red light therapy. Her back ground in human physiology has led her to specialise in Equine Sports Physiology and how the development of a supple balanced muscle structure can aid in the performance and fitness of our horses.
For more details take a look at www.InBalanceEquine.co.uk and give Claire a call on 07549398945 to discuss out how she can join your equine team to maximise your horses performance and wellbeing. Please always remember that this never replaces the role of your vet and all work on your horse will only proceed in conjunction with your vet.