Question # 333: Kayla has a question about core/ab exercises for her horse.
What are some good core/ab exercises for my horse? The vet says his back is in good shape, but his abs are weak, and we should work on getting those stronger as soon as we can to keep from ruining his back down the road.
Also, the last couple days I’ve noticed the little triangle muscles at the base of his neck (right in front of his withers) working differently at different times. When I ride him with his neck flat and out in front, they only work a little bit, and they don’t work at all when he’s giraffe-ing or when he tucks his nose even if he’s on the vertical. They seem to work quite a bit though at some other times. Are those muscles an okay indicator of whether or not he’s using his topline? (Kayla)
It is so good to hear a vet say that! As having a strong core is just as important to horses as it is to people. It is one of the secrets to being able to maintain a happy and healthy back, and to be able to access the horse's full power. First I want you to read this article on strength training for the equine athlete. This article will give you a comprehensive strength training program, and outline all the various tools available for building a strong equine athlete. And the 2 core specific exercises that I will add to that are: (Click on Question Title above (in blue) to read full answer)