Training the Mind of the Horse and Rider

Training the Mind of the Horse and Rider
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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Give Yourself Rest Time

January 20-22, 2012

Give Yourself Rest Time

                After a week of exercising, I took last weekend off.  Last week, Hubby and I walked 3 miles each day for 5 days, as well as spending some time on the elliptical and weight machines.  We worked on building up leg muscles, arm and shoulder strength, and overall endurance.  By Friday, our bodies were feeling a little sore.  We knew we were working muscles we haven’t been working during regular chore time.

                It was time to give our muscles rest instead of continually working them. We felt the tightness in our legs and a little stiffness in our shoulders.  Time off allows the muscles to relax without needed to take an aspirin.  I feel if you take a medicine because you are sore, you are feeling better but putting a band-aid on the soreness and not allowing your muscles to heal.

                I think horses go through the same thing.  We ride them too much before they are conditioned and they become sore.  We continue to ride without time off.  Do they have a chance to rest sore muscles?

                I’m sure soreness in our own bodies may have meant that we did a little too much too soon.  This week, I’m doing the same amount of walking and elliptical, but I’ve decreased the amounts on the weight machines by a small amount.  I’ve taken away some of the strain.  My shoulders feel better.

                With horses, slow conditioning is better, adding distance as the horse gets into shape, then adding more speed as each distance level.  I feel that is the way I’m conditioning myself.  Now, I’ll stay at the level that I’m at and slowly add distance on the elliptical and slowly add weights each week on the machines.

                The point is to stay healthy, and keep our horses healthy and sound.  It is amazing how strong you can get with a little time of structured exercise.  I’m thinking the same for our horses.  Develop a structured plan of conditioning to keep your horse moving on down the trail or in the arena.

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