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[RC] Heartrate monitors and their uses - agilbxr

 It wasn't that long ago that I finally bought my first heart rate monitor to help me with my quest to condition Alpine.  The real reason I bought it is that Alpine is coming off a bowed tendon, and although I think I'm pretty good at telling if my horse is lame, I figured this might help me tell if I was pushing him too hard, and catch something before it became severe.

I've been having fun with my little heartrate monitor. It's just the very basic, simple one, but it is kind of fun to see where Alpine's heartrate sits at the various gaits. I've learned that in his current roly poly state after 8 months of basically doing NOTHING, that he walks between 79-85 bpm normal walk.  His 5mph speed walk is at about 100bpm.  His slow gait runs about 150 bpm and his medium 160bpm.  I haven't gone any faster than that with him.  We are still building that condition base back up, regaining endurance, and strengthening that t endon.  What is REALLY interesting is the spooking.

Alpine is a spooky horse.  He spooks at everything, and some days, nothing.  He has spooked at his own gut sounds before.  Thankfully, he's not an Arab, and he has no knowledge of the teleportation that I've seen Arab's do, or I'd not be able to ride him.  He is kind enough to spook in place...which is really only inconvienent when we are moving at a good clip. That sudden stop is a killer.....

I have learned over the past few rides, what his heartrate does during spooks.  If we are walking, and the wind blows, the heart rate goes up to the 90's.  A horizontal log (this is one of his major pet peeves.  I think he's worried about whatever pushed that log over is coming after him next) runs around 100.  If the wind is blowing AND we come across a horizontal tree, think 130.  Oddly enough, the turkeys that popped out and the deer that jumped in fro nt of us hardly made a dent in that heart rate.  That makes no sense to me, but then, I'm not a horse.  Oh, and the black spot on the road was a 120 bpm spook.    I wonder, as he gains more fitness, does the spook bpm rating go down too?

Juli M Bechard
Life of the South
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(800) 888-2738 ext 8443

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