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Re: RC: Re: there's more to 'condition' than just cardiovascular

In a message dated Wed, 31 Jan 2001 11:01:36 AM Eastern Standard Time, Amanda Perez <> writes:

<<   Good point.  here's what comes to my mind.. any additions?

Things to train for:
1.  cardiovascular fitness
2.  strength (bone, muscle)
3.  agility/sure-footedness
4.  heat tolerance (sweating)
5.  'attitude' (manners, willingness, fearlessness)
6.  maintenance behavior (eating and drinking during rides for 

Any others?  Any tips on exefcises for the non-cardio items
(espec #5)?  >>

I'm too much into precise use of words--I like to break these down into two distinct areas:  1) training, and 2) conditioning.  To me, at least, "training" implies that you are teaching a horse something--and one of the biggest problems I've seen among endurance horses are horses that are fairly well conditioned, but not in the least bit trained!

Your first four items fall into the realm of conditioning--going out and putting in the miles and the hours to build a base, and then going further if the horse's aptitude and the rider's goals permit, into intervals, strength training, etc.

The other two items fall under "training"--something that DOES benefit from time in the arena, but likewise should be occurring every time you ride, every time you handle your horse from the ground, etc.  JMO, but EVERY horse, whether he is an endurance horse or not (but even more important if he is an endurance horse) needs to have the basic groundwork to be able to stand tied, to eat and drink tied, to have all parts of his body handled and remain calm, to be able to get a foot over a rope and not panic, to be able to walk and trot in hand and WHOA, etc.  And all that is stuff he can learn when he is still green under saddle, or earlier!  He can also learn to haul and to camp away from home.  Under saddle, he needs to learn to be under control at all gaits, to pay attention to his rider, and to learn some basic maneuvers in response to leg aids, etc.  Not to mention WHOA.  From there, basic dressage is helpful to all horses--again, how far one takes it depends on aptitude an!
d goals, but the basics apply to
 all horses in all disciplines.  THAT is training, in my book...


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