One Day Case Study: 8 Year Old QH Gelding
Complaint: Sensitive Feet, Overall Fitness
“Natural Asymmetry” is a hot topic in horsemanship right now, and while it is absolutely true that it exists and can be significantly “straightened” with correct classical training and conditioning, it is also apparent that a great deal of the asymmetry is due to chronically contracted muscles.
The most efficient and effective way to “straighten” a horse is to first help him or her release the chronic and involuntarily contracted muscles that are pulling the skeleton out of alignment, using Equine Hanna Somatics®.
This will reveal the horses true natural asymmetry, which can then be addressed with training.
I’ve included two photos of a 8 year old Quarter Horse Gelding taken ONE HOUR apart, before and after doing a session of Equine Hanna Somatics.
When you compare these photos, you will see that much of this horse’s apparent crookedness was actually a series of muscles on either side of the spine that were stuck in low level spasm (aka chronic involuntary contraction), pulling the back into a zig-zagging line. Once this horse was able to feel that these muscles were tight, and re-learn how to relax them through voluntary (mindful) movements, about 80% of his “crookedness” has resolved!
It is possible, and in fact quite reliable, to expect most horses to achieve a similar degree of change after a single EHS session.
This horse will now have an easier time moving in all directions, a longer stride, and greater range of motion overall. He was already a pleasure to be around, and now will be even more willing and playful!