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Re: Fun with Fitness!!

In a message dated 12/24/98 6:09:42 AM Pacific Standard Time, writes:

<< AND, this business of dousing the horse with water to make his
 pulse come down!!!  Unless it ia 90 degrees and 90% humidity,
 this, IMO, is counter-productive.  From my experience, the FIT
 horses recover quickly WITHOUT water. >>

Dumping water on the horse is only productive when a large component of the
high pulse is due to trying to lower body temperature and the ambient
conditions (heat and/or humidity) are such that the horse cannot do this very
effectively through his own cooling mechanisms.  My own thumb rule about using
large quantities of water is whether or not I am sufficiently warm from the
ambient conditions that I would want water on ME.  I never cease to be amazed
at people out using water on their horses out of tanks with ice in them while
they themselves are bundled up in coats.  Have actually seen pulses go UP and
horses get in trouble from this sort of thing.  Another problem comes when
people who are well-versed in riding in heat but in low humidity encounter
heat PLUS humidity and do not remember that all that water they dump on their
horses does not evaporate readily and simply warms up to body temperature and
becomes an additional layer insulating the horse and preventing the heat from
escaping.  One must put cooler water on and mechanically remove it as it warms
up, replacing it again with cooler water, in order to achieve the goal of
assisting the horse to lower body temperature.  As with ALL other things that
we do, we have to understand WHY we do them (and how to do them properly), so
that we know WHEN they are appropriate and when they are not!


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