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View Full Version : Suggestions for fitness



akstaj
Mar. 31, 2012, 05:05 PM
I have a RID gelding that is progressing nicely, however I have run into an issue, he is not fit as I would like him to be. He is the most fit he has ever been, but is a hard ride. Our typical week, off Sun and Mon, great hack on Tues, he is light and cooperative. Wens, a school over fences or a hack, a little heavier but still cooperative. By Thurs and Fri, he is a lazy tank. No amount of spur or crop can motivate him. Sat we school, flat work is a complete work out for me. He tends to jump very flat and lazy.
We usually hack for 30 min of trot and canter work.

Any suggestions to his routine? Because what we are doing isn't working

Thoroughbred in Color
Mar. 31, 2012, 06:57 PM
Sounds like it may be more a matter of boredom than a lack of conditioning. Try changing up the schedule some if possible, can you space out his "off" days? Maybe off on Sunday, school flatwork on Monday, hack on Tuesday, off on Wednesday, school fences on Thursday, xc ride with some hill work on Friday (my vet swears by hill work for conditioning), and a nice easy hack on Saturday to work out any stiffness.

If it really is a lack of conditioning, try hill work at least one day per week, and interval training 2 or 3 days per week. You can work the intervals into your hacks so you aren't taking away from your schooling time, or you can do them on the longe.

You don't have to do long, intense works to start. The idea is to be able to build cardiovascular capacity and endurance.

This is what I did to get my mare fit after a long layoff before sending her to training. (I longed her, due to my not being able to ride because of an injury):

Day one
5 minutes warm up each direction (slow trot)
2 minutes canter each direction (fast, but not quite a gallop)
5 minutes extended trot each direction (as fast as possible)
4 minutes canter each direction (slow and collected)
5 minutes cool down each direction (slow trot/walk)
42 minutes-ish (I extend the cool down time if necessary)

Day two
5 minutes trot each direction (slow to warm up, then into working trot)
5 minutes canter each direction (good working pace)
5 minutes trot each direction (nice and slow to cool down)
30 minutes

Day 3
5 minutes warm up each direction (slow trot)
2 minutes canter each direction (fast, but not quite a gallop)
5 minutes extended trot each direction (as fast as possible)
4 minutes canter each direction (slow and collected)
5 minutes cool down each direction (slow trot/walk)
42 minutes-ish (I extend the cool down time if necessary)

Day 4 off

Repeat days 1-4






I repeated the schedule for about a month, and she went from being "fluffy" to rock hard fit.

Best of luck with your guy :)