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Another troublesome body-part

  Bad knees and weak bladders have been discussed here, so I'd 
like to open a discussion on bad backs.  I had surgery for a 
ruptured disc a few years ago (L5/S1, for all my fellow back-
sufferers).  I am wondering if anyone who has had lower-back 
surgery does distance riding, and what they do to combat back 
pain.  Most of the time my back is fine while riding, though I 
do find cantering for any length of time can cause problems 
(espec. if I sit rather than stand in the stirrups), and 
cleaning hooves (espec. rear) is a painful chore, but I worry 
about how I'll hold up to hours in the saddle.

  Also - I'd *love* to hear more about gaited Arabs! Does 
anyone breed Arabs selectively for gait? If I should ever get 
seriously into endurance, I just don't think I can handle an 
arab trot, and doubt I could be 'competitive' on a Walker.

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