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  1. #1

    Default Define what a "good hind leg/end" is.

    I've seen this many places. Explain what a good hind end or leg is.


    Some people say: "Only breed (fill in the blank stallion) to a mare with a good hind leg."

    Does this mean movement or conformation?
    Last edited by back in the saddle; Jun. 20, 2010 at 08:40 AM.



  2. #2
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    Anyone?



  3. #3
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    Both/either, depends on the context
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    Quote Originally Posted by JB View Post
    Both/either, depends on the context
    Then people need to be more specific when posting those comments.



  5. #5
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    Sometimes it's obvious. If there are only still shots, it has to be related to conformation. If there are videos, then yes, it could be related to either, or both.

    But, when it's related to movement, that usually stems from REALLY being about the conformation.
    ______________________________
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    Well, I can only tell you what I like! Starting with the croup, I want a long hipbone and a croup that isn't too horizontal, but has SOME slope and ties in well with the tail, so that the tailhead comes in smoothly and the tail falls straight, as though, if it were long enough, the tail would brush the entire length of the back of the lower leg. I like to see low hocks, short cannon bone, stifle not set in tightly but lower and away from body. I want a hind leg that is not straight (from the side) but has good angle at hocks and i want the tail to fall and brush the back of lower leg when the hind legs are square under the horse. I want a fetlock that isn't too short or too long at a 45 degree angle that runs into the front side of the hoof at that same angle, and a foot that fits the size of the horse with wide heels not underrun. From the rear, I want the hipbones even and the legs straight, not toeing in or out. A visual picture is that if you picked up the horse and dangled him, like he was wet clay, in rearview the legs would fall straight down and be the same width apart between top and bottom of cannon bones. Clean, unfilled legs with well-defined tendons and no oedema anywhere. That's what I like to see.



  7. #7
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    What's wrong with Florestan's hind?

    What about the Sandro Hit line? I've heard comments about these as well.



  8. #8
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    There must be another thread involved that I don't know about. I breed Hanoverian hunters and jumpers and haven't heard the critiques of the above two stallions! Thus, I can't respond except to say that I know of many super Sandro Hit offspring!



  9. #9
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    Not another thread but I've read the comments in several places.

    For example, at one point I was thinking about breeding my S/R (sandro hit/rubinstein) line filly to Florestan and comments were posted suggesting I not do that becuase of the hind end issues of those three lines.

    F,S,R

    So I'm curious what kinds of issues (generally speaking) people are talking about when mentioning good/bad hind ends.



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    Quote Originally Posted by back in the saddle View Post
    I've seen this many places. Explain what a good hind end or leg is.


    Some people say: "Only breed (fill in the blank stallion) to a mare with a good hind leg."

    Does this mean movement or conformation?

    It would depend entirely on the type of horse you are breeding for.
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



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    Dressage.



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    A good hind leg for dressage is one that is able to step under well, carry weight well and be quick.What it actually is is that a horse with a good hind leg takes his hind leg off the ground and moves it forward quicker. It doesn't spend more time in the backwards phase...if you know what I mean?? Florestans are often slow behind...so in piaffe, passage ect it looks lazy...they can't often get the height and activity behind that one likes in a dressage horse. Obviously that is just major generalization. Sandro Hit's are generally out behind...ie they rotate their hocks further out and therefor are not able to place the hock in the right place to carry (ie collection in general is hard). They spend more time in the backwards phase..thats what it looks like to me. But they are usually pretty quick with the hind legs (though it doesn't matter really because if the hind leg isn't landing in the right place to carry then collection will still be hard).



    Mikeal Holmstrom is a swedish vet who did his thesis on biomechanics and conformation of elite dressage horses. A friend of mine studied with him and has shown me exactly what it is that these horses have. You want look at them from the side and you stand the horse so that his cannon bone is TOTALLY perpendicular to the ground . If you draw a line from the toe straight up it should end up closer to the point of hip than to the point of buttock. Ie..the horse is more under himself. BUT the horse must not be sickle hocked. I have looked at lots of horses and this is totally true, no doubt about it.
    www.svhanoverians.com

    "Simple: Breeding,Training, Riding". Wolfram Wittig.



  13. #13
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    What about the Rubinstein line?

    I have heard about F's being slow and S's being out behind. I had forgotten so thanks.



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    I have the Mikeal Holmstrom book/pamplet that I got when I went to a clinic that explained it all 110 years ago. It's interesting stuff on the conformation. One of the things I remember is you can't look at a shoulder and tell how it works very well. Also, what people call straight in the hind end conformation is actually what is desirable to be able to do the piaffe/passage.

    That said, I look at conformation, but in the end, and I want to see how it works. What I look first and foremost for in the hind end is basically what Donella said. I want the hind legs to be able to separate and get under the horse and move quickly enough. You can see the hind leg separation and ability to step under in still pictures. I bought my last horse from a still picture that showed this, even though she was everything I didn't want (8 year old broodmare, small, greenbroke.) In 3 1/2 years (and two babies) she's now working on a pretty nice passage and piaffe.

    I don't know if you can get the Holmstrom book, but it's one of the best things I've ever seen actually correlating performance to conformation.



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    As a breeder I believe that it is my responsibility to both my horses and their future owners to breed a horse whose conformation is well suited for riding - ie does not cause training issues that delay the progress of the horse through the usual levels of training This also allows them to compete at the highest level of sport and stay sound.

    As regards the hind end, I try to attain the following for the hind leg-

    (Remember the hind leg must fold and swing under the plane of the body in an arc so the horse can carry its and the rider's weight efficiently(least output of energy for distance covered)).

    Wing of the ilium (point of the hip) in a vertical line with the stifle
    Angle of the wing of the ilium, point of the ischium (buttocks) and stifle of 90 degrees. The angle can be a bit more open if the hock is straight or a bit more narrow if the hock is angled (sickled).

    Length of wing of ilium to point of ischium nearly equal to length of ischium to stifle.

    With the cannon perpendicular to the ground, the point of the hock and the point of the hip should be in a vertical line. The point of the hock may be slightly behind this line.

    The length of the gaskin is sufficient to place the hock in the proper position. It usually ends up about 1.3 - 1.4 times the length of the point of hip to stifle length.

    The angle of the hock is about 135 degrees. Again a more open ("straight") angle is compensation for an open hip angle, a more closed ("sickle") angle compensates for a more closed hip. The hocks should be large and broad especially if there is any degree of sickling.

    The hocks should be just above the level of the knees.

    The hind pastern angle should be around 50 degrees.

    Pastern length about 1/3 of canon length.

    From the rear the hocks should be straight. A small degree of cow hock is acceptable. Bow-leggedness in any degree is not acceptable.

    Of course hind legs do not exist in a vacuum and must be viewed as a part of the entire horse. You can have all of the above leg conformation and have it be a "bad" hind leg if it makes the horse 4" taller behind. Their is also an amount of fashion/prejudice when looking at the hind leg. Hunters, for example, seem to like a straighter hind leg.

    The problem with the Mikeal Holmstrom study is that it was done (as I recall) on 13 Grand Prix horses, 12 of which were Swedish Warmbloods and one of which was a thoroughbred. Since Swedish Warmbloods do not make up 95+% of Grand Prix horses it is one that needs to be redone to be useful to breeders and riders to see if there is any predictability when it comes to successful conformation. A good conformation will get you well started down that road but it requires an excellent mind and good training to make it to the end.
    Last edited by Canterbury Court; Jun. 20, 2010 at 08:39 PM. Reason: confused vertical with horizontal and hip with hock. No more champagne for breakfast...
    Cindy Bergmann
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canterbury Court View Post

    Wing of the ilium (point of the hip) in a horizontal line with the stifle
    Angle of the wing of the ilium, point of the ischium (buttocks) and stifle of 90 degrees. The angle can be a bit more open if the hock is straight or a bit more narrow if the hock is angled (sickled).

    What ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Equibrit View Post
    What ?
    Veritcal line?



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    Veritably.
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



  19. #19
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    I kind of think it is something a person has to train their eye for. You actually do not have to know the hows and whys if you are a rider..if you can recognize a good hind leg. But as a breeder I think it is pretty important. Without a good hind I think you are pretty lucky to get to PSG..and forget the GP.

    Lots of the R line horses are decent. I hate generalizing because even with the F line I can think of some who are good.ie Furst Romancier, Fuerst Piccolo, Fidertanz ect. Same with SH line..Stedinger is not bad (maybe from Landadel?).

    Alot of nice D line boys with good hind ends ie Dancier, Don Frederico (both my DF's had SUPER hind ends) to name a few.

    In general I think the W line horses are consistantly good in the hind ends. Wolkentanz 1 and 2 and Wolkenstein come to mind. Weltmeyer himself is very good behind. Lots of power, snappy, ability to step under. Lots of W's in international sport.

    I think alot of the Dutch horses are good too. The Jazz relatives I have seen are very good behind.
    www.svhanoverians.com

    "Simple: Breeding,Training, Riding". Wolfram Wittig.



  20. #20
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    Default The new new hindquarter.

    I think comparing warmblood lines and knowing which lines to go to to make a modern dressage behind starts with identifying what the ideal movement looks like. Perhaps the new new hind leg is Totilas...I can sense an argument...who ever the new new hind end movement icon will be is a whole body and mind complex and not a purely structural construct.

    The goals for hind end movement in modern competitive dressage has changed over time. Today the top level seems to need a lot more action. The foot step will be higher...the old oval(to follow the path of the foot) seems rounder now and is expected to end more underneath the horse. Not so long ago the trot step had more track behind the horse...didn't lift as high and didn't step as far under...this was a slower step. Today the most desired horses have a faster step. They snap up sooner and get forward quicker. The old step gave a flashy floaty trot extention. The new step gives a more sitting extention.

    When people are discussing "improving" a hind leg in warmbloods they are talking about the resulting movement more than about structure. Approved warmblood stallions generally have very good structure though there are subtle differences. Since structure is the basis for movement of course structure is important but I don't think that there is necessarily a big structural difference. The speed a horses snaps their hind legs from the ground and moves them ahead has as much to do with structure, as fast twitch muscle fibers, as neurological response time, as reactive or less reactive temperaments.

    So when looking at lines to cross they were saying that someone was crossing lines that all had a known slow hind leg...and the second choice had a slow hind leg too. Not incorrect conformation...bad limbs...but not the now desired fast hind leg.

    Why do you want a fast hind leg...they are easier horses to train for upper level dressage. You are not training them to improve the speed of a slow hind leg...which you can do. You are working with a natural strid ethat is already more underneath the prospective upper level horse. So the goal is to breed a faster rear leg. What might be bad about a fast hind leg...it might come with a "fast" temperament making it more a professionals horse. The best of both worlds for most of us might be a fast leg with an amateur friendly forgiving temperament. PatO



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