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Different feeling on l/r diagonals???

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  • Different feeling on l/r diagonals???

    This isn't dressage, but I don't know where to post it. My new (and vetted) pony feels quite different on each trot diagonal. The left diagonal is quite smooth, and the right feels much rougher. I know having a difference is normal, but is there a way to get the rough right side to feel smoother?

    This was a kids lesson pony so I know she had tons on small riders and non riders on her. She is 9.
    ********
    There is no snooze button on a cat that wants breakfast.

  • #2
    Hi! A few thoughts come to mind:

    I know having a difference is normal
    No. This is not normal.

    Potential causes:

    1) horse is lame
    2) horse is very crooked
    3) horse paddles
    4) horse is super hollow one way, and super stiff the other
    5) rider is crooked
    6) saddle is slipping to one side


    Let me think if there is anything else comes to mind.

    Comment


    • #3
      Do you mean in the same direction? If I post on the "wrong" diagonal, it feels very different than the "right", but equally so in both directions.
      From now on, ponyfixer, i'll include foot note references.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Yes, in the same direction. The correct diagonal feels smooth, the incorrect feels rough. On the trail, it is one direction, so I alternate diagonals.

        The pony is not lame and she doesn't paddle. She's not crooked.

        4,5,and 6 maybe, could be.....
        ********
        There is no snooze button on a cat that wants breakfast.

        Comment


        • #5
          We post on the left diagonal when going left in part to free up the right side of the horses back as that side needs to lift/stretch to allow that side to take a longer step. If you horse feels rough when posting on the left diagonal, then it is likely because the horse is lifting/stretching the left side rather than the right.


          Fantastic posted the most likely reasons for this. If you feel the horse is sound and not crooked, then I would check the rider...if the rider has more weight in one side then the other the horse will need to counter balance.

          I would guess though, that the real reason is the horse is unevenly built on both sides, resulting in a hollow side and a stiff side (aka, crooked). This is natural! Working to stretch out the hollow side will help make the horse more even, and then it will use its back more evenly.

          If your horse is extremely right leg dominant, it will also favour using its right side for balance; so going to the right it may feel more balanced as it uses its right hind to weight bear/push, but to the left it will hollow and fall in on its shoulder.

          Tracing your horse's back and checking for symetry would be a great start though; if the horse is very uneven it will show in the measurements as the horse will measure differently on each side...with will affect balance and saddle fit as well!
          Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Fantastic View Post
            Hi! A few thoughts come to mind:



            No. This is not normal.

            Potential causes:

            1) horse is lame
            2) horse is very crooked
            3) horse paddles
            4) horse is super hollow one way, and super stiff the other
            5) rider is crooked
            6) saddle is slipping to one side


            Let me think if there is anything else comes to mind.
            Totally agree. If a horse feels radically different going from one diagonal to the other, this is NOT normal. When I am horse shopping (or evaluating a horse for lameness) I cross the diagonal and change diagonals several times to see if it feels like I am riding two different horses. I also post on the "correct" and "incorrect" diagonals to feel the horses gaits.

            It usually points to a horse being crooked and/or lame.
            On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

            Comment


            • #7
              If it's the same direction (ie, straight) could it be normal? For me, one does not feel "rough", but it shifts my pelvis the other way or something, so it feels "different".

              If you sit the trot a few strides does it feel even? Or do you feel thrown in one direction preferentially. In that case, I say, no, probably not "normal" and look into one of the above things.
              From now on, ponyfixer, i'll include foot note references.

              Comment


              • #8
                If the horse is going straight, and is being ridden straight, then their should be no need for diagonals as the horse's back should be level/moving equally, and so should feel the same. If it doesn't, then the horse is either using its back and/or legs unevenly, or isn't truely straight.
                Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

                Comment


                • #9
                  It might be "normal" for your pony, but there is definitely some reason for it because it's not typical for horses to be drastically different from one diagonal to the other, especially not on a straight line.

                  Yes, there are a lot of horses that feel different on each diagonal and that is "normal" for them, but there is generally a training issue that's caused it, an old injury, a weakness somewhere, or a conformational flaw - once you find out the cause, you can work on strengthening the weakness to make it as even as your horse can be.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It usually means that the horse is either lame behind or very weak on one hind leg. Definitely worth getting (re)checked out by a lameness specialist.
                    http://www.MyVirtualEventingCoach.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This was a kids lesson pony so I know she had tons on small riders and non riders on her. She is 9.
                      Agree with Fantastics list of possibilities.

                      If this pony has been ridden mostly by small-ish kids and rank beginners ... I would think it very possible (and most likely) her uneveness could easily be caused by the weakness of her riders. Over time, she has not developed her muscles evenly ...

                      Comment

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