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Post Workout Routines???

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  • Post Workout Routines???

    I am curious as to what you prefer when it comes to the best post work out routines, what have you used that has been most effective/ how do you go about your routine? Just looking at the options (ice,wraps,lineaments??). Everyone has different opinions to what they deem as effective, just what more opinions about products before I go about constructing my own routine. Thanks!!!

  • #2
    What sort of work outs? My horse mostly does endurance type conditioning which includes what I would call a hard work out once a week. After every ride he gets a bath, leg check, electrolytes, stretching, icing front legs if I have ice boots with me. After a ride with hard footing I pack his feet. Might consider poulticing but not routinely. I know people that wrap their horse's legs after a "hard" dressage ride - not sure of the benefit. I like sore no more. I also use quality essential oils for body work.

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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by silverdog View Post
      What sort of work outs? My horse mostly does endurance type conditioning which includes what I would call a hard work out once a week. After every ride he gets a bath, leg check, electrolytes, stretching, icing front legs if I have ice boots with me. After a ride with hard footing I pack his feet. Might consider poulticing but not routinely. I know people that wrap their horse's legs after a "hard" dressage ride - not sure of the benefit. I like sore no more. I also use quality essential oils for body work.
      Thanks for the info. I ride reining horses, we work them for 30-40 minutes a day, switch up which maneuvers to work on each day. I would say they probably get a good workout 3/6 days we ride them a week. What I've just been doing is spraying them off with the hose and really focusing on their legs/hind end. I just want something extra that I could do daily, I've heard of people wrapping their horses also, I've seen people put poultice then standing wraps... I would like this option, but from what I know you shouldn't leave them on for too long, overnight at max, and that wouldn't work with my schedule. What sore no more products do you use?

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      • #4
        If there's a day each week where you could poultice and/or bandage overnight and return in the AM to remove them or have someone else do so, you could work poulticing into your routine. Otherwise a liniment or using ice boots are the more hassle free routes. I ice a couple times a week, 10-15 minutes. If you don't have ice boots, you could consider cold hosing.

        Alternatively, lots of folks use Back On Track wraps in place of bandaging or poulticing. Personally, I haven't used BoT wraps but they seem to be a hit.

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        • #5
          It really depends on the horse, the level of work, any issues the horse has had in the past, and the weather. Come winter, obviously, we won't be doing many full body rinses unless they need it. Right now, they are getting far more sweaty than they do in winter.
          My upper level dressage horses use then game ready after every work for 20 min. Then they get returned to their stalls. After about an hour they get standing wraps on 2-4 legs. Some of them use Back on Track if they have a problem area but the rest get normal standing wraps.
          You don't throw a whole life away just because its a little banged up - Tom Smith

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          • #6
            I wonder about whether most of these treatments have any real effect on post-workout soreness or long time soundness. If I had empirical evidence that a treatment was effective, I would definitely do it. It's hard though when you don't know where the horse is feeling the strain, to know what to do precisely. As compared to on ourselves, when we consider all the aches and pains at the end of the day, and apply liniment or heat or cold appropriately!

            I also think it depends what problems the horses are showing, if any, and how they are kept.

            A horse that is worked hard and then kept in a stall for the rest of the time might need wraps for stocking up. The same horse might be fine without wraps if it then goes back to live in a pasture and walks around.

            The usefulness of routine use of ice on human athletes is now being questioned by sports medicine, which is interesting, but these findings haven't been interpreted yet for equine care. It's true that the horse's leg below the knee and hock is all tendon and bone, no muscle, whereas ice on humans is typically for muscles.

            Obviously for an acute injury with inflammation, ice is very useful for the first 24 hours.

            For myself, I feel that if my relatively young and very healthy horse was showing heat, swelling, or pain after routine rides, I would be looking at our routine, our footing, our hooves, our tack, my riding. Of course if I was managing an older horse with known problems, that would be different.

            She does love a warm hose bath in the summer, but can't really do that in the winter.

            When we trailer out for a three or four hour trail ride (our maximum work at the moment), I currently give her the day off the next day (grass walk, turnout) so that I'm not asking her to work through fatigue or any post workout stiffness. If we get to higher fitness level, that shouldn't be necessary.

            Perhaps adequate rest and avoiding chronic stress from the same routine is just as important as what post-workout treatement you apply. Certainly for humans, I know that you don't lift weights two days in a row, or go for a jog when your shin splints are acting up, or if you are having even a hint of weird foot pain .



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            • #7
              Scribbler raises some good points!

              I had originally intended to add that, though I ice my horse, it's limited. She seems to enjoy it, but I do imagine cold therapy has its benefits to an extent. Everything in moderation, and any treatment won't replace R&R or a vet's insight if there's a real concern.

              You mentioned you rein, which makes sense why you focus on the hind end. Do you break up your routine or do you tend to work on the same maneuvers every ride? For example, I don't tackle run downs often. I'll focus more on the "whoa" in the walk and trot. IMO, it's less stress on the hocks.

              Comment


              • #8
                The reason I might ice is that a) my horse had a suspensory injury last year and b) there has been research indicating the amount of heating the tendons/ligaments experience when the horse is worked and that this heating is not great and boots increase it. My horse also lives out 24/7 so no wraps etc. I like the sore no more liniment because my horse dislikes the tingly mint flavored liniments!

                Comment


                • #9
                  I stretch my ponies legs, do a few poll releases, rub down with a hot towel in the winter and sponge in the summer. He gets arnica rubbed into his legs and joints since he is older. I will ice if an unusual hard workout. He doesn't wear boots except trail riding so, no heat build up there. I do use his back on track cover under his cooler if it is cold out.

                  He's out 23/7 unless a bad storm or multiple days of wet weather to give his feet a chance to dry out. He comes in to eat his grain. So I hardly ever wrap, maybe twice in 3 years.
                  "Anyone who tries to make brownies without butter should be arrested." Ina Garten

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                  • #10
                    My horse works moderately hard 4-5 days a week (schooling 2nd-3rd level dressage, ~ 60-70 min rides including warm up and lots of walk breaks). After a workout, she gets to roll in a sand pen, hosed off if weather permits, looked over for any problems, put in a turnout while I clean/finish up, then put away (in a large stall) with a bucket & hay. No liniments, wraps or anything. A simple routine, but she has no reason for something more complicated (and I board, so it's not always convenient to change warps 12-24 hrs later).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I go for a long walk at the end of every ride - usually a hack around the property on a loose rein, sometimes just meandering around the arena if the weather is questionable. I think this cool-down is really super important - I know that when I work out/run etc if I just hard stop I am very likely to get sore whereas if I properly cool down I feel pretty good later.

                      Aside from that, it varies season to season. In the warmer months she goes in the wash stall for a rinse. I'm lucky enough to have warm water in the wash stall, so it's a lukewarm/cool rinse rather than a freezing cold one. If we've done a tougher ride I will rinse her legs with liniment, but usually I just use a scrubby mitt to give her a nice rubdown/massage all over, which she seems to enjoy. When it's colder, she's wrapped up in various layers of coolers as we cool out, and if there's a lot of sweaty girth/saddle marks to deal with, I might use sponge in hot water and wrung out to scrub them out. Then it's (usually) blanket back on and she's good to go.

                      I try to fuss around with her as little as possible after work is done, as I truly believe the best reward for working is for her to be able to just go be a horse without me fiddling about

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                      • #12
                        After a 3 hour ride horse is usually hot sweaty even after walking for last 30 minutes of ride. I hose them off and put them in barn with big fan blowing on them. Helps finish cooling them off and helps them dry off faster. No wrapping legs no poulticing, just hose off let dry turn back out. Was doing liniment rub downs, but really don't think it does much. Liniments gone so not buying any more.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Best post-workout setup? Turnout in a large enough pasture so they are walking. I'd say if turnout isn't an option (and I mean real turnout, not just outside in a "mare motel") then hand walking for 20-30 minutes is all but required, so that muscles can continue to be in motion as they cool down, and to mitigate the delayed thermal reaction from being put back in a stall with a still-warm internal body temperature.

                          I do prefer to at least rinse the sweat off the back, even if that's just sponging it off if the weather is too cool for the hose. The more sweat there is, and the warmer it is, the more I will hose to get sweat off, including between the hind legs and up in the udder/sheath area - don't need them to be itchy and scratching on posts or trees.

                          Ice on the lower legs after work is never a bad idea, it's just overkill for most horses.
                          ______________________________
                          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            To my minimal post ride care I should add that I always have a long walk to end, that we ride on trails a lot so don't have the stress of repeated circles, we even school things on trails. I don't put leg boots on her so don't need to worry about her tendons over heating. She has a stall with a small run-out that is enough to keep her moving in and out, though it isn't a pasture. And she can roll at will.

                            Our one leg thing is a tendency to wind gall puffs on the hind fetlocks. These are related to her pronating and can only be kept in check by attention to the balance of her hind hooves. Lotions have no effect. Wrapping wouldn't work.

                            I have found that our roundpen has a hard sand surface and is a bit too small for her, and if I work her in there more than once a week her hind legs stock up. So now I avoid it.

                            We also trailer bare legged for what that's worth.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have been battling mushy hooves with my guy this summer so I have been really careful about too much hosing off. If he is really hot and sweaty of course he gets a hose down, but if he has completely cooled out, then just the saddle marks and between the hind legs get sponged down. Follow that up with a quick towel or sponge for face and bridle marks. I may put in a splash of liniment or witch hazel in the water occasionally because I like the smell and it might discourage the crud.

                              I am also a fan of 'less is more', but I make sure to follow up our quick sponging (once he is dry under his fan) with a light all over curry/ rub with a cactus cloth, rough towel or Grooming Hands Gloves. This post ride rub is part massage, grooming and health check. Most days he loves it, but every once in a while he gives me the "cut it short and turn me out" look.

                              Less hosing and more currying has made his hooves better (and my farrier happy), but his coat has been in great shape this summer with out a hint of any summer crud. Plus I think that I have a better feel for his over all leg heath when I have more hands on then hose on.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                The most important thing to keep a horse sound and functional is to have a paddock for turn out for a roll after riding.
                                www.cordovafarm.weebly.com

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Oooh this is a BIG pet peeve of mine.

                                  I see young riders at my barn ride their horses to a nice sweat, then hop off, throw a cooler on, and stick them in their stall. And these are supposed to be Pony Club kids.
                                  What happened to cooling off your horse after a work out??

                                  I always hack my horse after a workout. If possible, out on the trails, or in the field nearby, or if weather is bad, I walk them in the indoor until they are dry. Yes, it takes time, and has to be considered a part of the ride. After untacking I towel off the saddle / girth area, and throw them back outside to walk it off some more.

                                  No wrapping/ poulticing/ liniment-ing, unless there is a problem.
                                  Ottbs - The finish line is only the beginning!

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    My guys both live outside 24/7 now. (rehabbing a mysteriously lame 3 year old OTTB ) he actually had the worst shoeing job I've ever seen and a gimpy back left leg, and a horrible sore back, thats a completely different story)

                                    A good walking warmup, when I get on I like to do a walk with a purpose for 10-15 minutes. I only have a field to ride in. No arena. Theres rolling hills etc. I ride lightly now 3-4 times a week, a 20-35 minute ride w/t/c in the field or I hack out on the paved road.

                                    The most I ever do is apply a little vetrolin to his tendons after I've done a quick cold hose. When he was in a different setup, lived in a stall with a run id do the whole hoof packing, icing and poultice or BOT quick wraps (amazing, worth the money)

                                    He does seem 'sounder' and happier living outside 24/7. I know thats not viable for everyone. He gets to roam around on 5 to 15 acres depending on what pasture he's in, with plenty of other horses.

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