Horsey Therapist

Sunday, May 03, 2009


My hips are moving more, thanks to 18 months of physical therapy exercises (4 visits with PT and lots of homework!) and some recent visualizations from Judy Cross-Stehlke, Level 4 Centered Riding Instructor.

How do I know? Well, the arthritis is painful as the joints gain mobility, and most importantly I can enjoy a canter and stay connected with the motion, in both leads.

I rode Rusty today then Kacee. Kacee will hold her canter despite what my hips are doing, or not doing. Rusty on the other hand will mimic my body and my energy. The good news? I can ask for a left lead then let my hips go to their habitual right lead position and -- tada! -- flying lead change! What an education for me! LOL

So I practice and practice and practice. It does not yet come easy but it is so exciting to me!

I'm also doing transitions over a ground pole -- gives me focus for the 'where we'll do this', and progresses easily to some off-the-ground-poles, also known as little jumps. Playing around with breathing the transition, breathing the steady trot, breathing the steady canter.

Then inside to do more of the PT exercises afterwards, trying to strengthen the muscles needed to move these formerly stiff, stiff, stiff joints in my lower back.

I don't need chocolate ice cream or a winning lottery ticket to get me excited... I need play time on the back of my horses!

Then to top it all off, I was out in the paddock asking Sofia if she would consider opening her mind and her mouth when I presented a bit, when Riza meanders over and starts nibbling on the bit. I think she will be fine when I want to bridle her if I keep building on her curiosity and her desire to be involved when I show up.


At 04 May, 2009 06:02, Blogger Victoria Cummings said...

I definitely agree with you about playing with a horse being the best for raising your spirits. I have the same issues with Silk when we lope as you have with Rusty. As I stiffen my back and hips, she shortens her stride and her back legs start hopping and I start bouncing which only makes it worse for her. We've both got arthritis, so maybe that's what makes us so sympathetic to each other. Thanks for your comment about Siete - I'm going to think about that quite a bit.

At 04 May, 2009 20:31, Blogger Michelle said...

Good for you, Lasell! I'm glad to hear its going so well.

I think my fall off Lakota was a blessing in disguise. Since I was hurt, I was adjusted at least 3 times a week, and for the first time in about 10 years, I no longer have any low back pain, and my hips and sacrum are beginning to move much more fluidly. I can't wait to get a lesson in a few months, and see if I can finally manage a posting trot! Yes, yes, posting trot has eluded me, I just can't quite seem to manage to get it. Maybe being locked up was the problem!


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