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Re: [RC] getting the horse fit - Tiffany D'Virgilio

on 2/4/03 7:30 AM, Barbara McCrary at bigcreekranch@xxxxxxxxxx wrote:

Melanie, I'm conditioning a 6 1/2 year old Arab right now.  He was a virtual
flat-lander in his previous home.  Young horses have trouble coming
downhill, because it takes a lot of strength in the hindquarters to make a
smooth and relaxed descent.  It takes months, perhaps years if the horse is
started on the trail at, say, 4 years old.  As I remember from trail
training several young Arabs over the years that a horse is nearly 7 before
he is a GOOD downhill horse (unless, I suppose, he was raised on hills).
And be sure to check things like saddle pressure on the shoulders or girth
pinching behind the elbow.  <<

Stupid question, but how steep of hills are we talking and at what gait?
When the hill gets how steep do most people slow down and walk? Or get off
and walk? 

We are in the foothills and I went out and did all hill work yesterday. I
noticed that I did mostly extended trot on gradual down hills  especially in
decomposed granite. On moderate downhills, I either walked or got off and
jogged beside the horse. It's nice to be able to jog with my arm around her
neck-we both like that feeling of being on the same page. Anyway, just
wondering what most people do.
Thanks, Tiffany 

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