Take to the hills

New tactics in the battle to fight our lingering hindquarter stiffness and overall “chubby chub horse” syndrome. Bring on the hill work. Most people (including myself) are typically annoyed by the hills covering 90% of the midwest, as it makes for unsteady turnouts for our precious and injury-prone horses. However, I have decided that the pony and I are going to start some hill workouts to increase her strength in the back end and keep those muscles loose while we let her chiropractic adjustments do their thing!

Not great for turnout, but great for hill work!
Not great for turnout, but great for hill work!

She will be getting a few minutes of walk warm up on the flat, then gradually start walking up and down some smaller slopes behind the arena. Focus will be on asking for her to stretch up under herself and really use those big hindquarters of hers. That is where the residual stiffness lies, and we need to work it out. Hopefully as the stiffness works out we can start working into some trot work up and down the hills. Baby steps, in a much larger effort to see how her back and hips do with us focusing on their rehabilitation. Also, in pushing her general fitness I believe these workouts will help to get her “wind back”.

To break up the hills, we will be doing more consistent pole work in the arena (to get those legs lifting).

Get those legs up!
Get those legs up!

Maybe we’ll even break out some cavaletti. Now that we know about her discomfort in her back/hindquarters I’m ready to focus on getting those as strong as possible. So we can get back to doing this…

Happy Pony
Happy Pony
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