Study: Horses adjust to a rider's weight

Apr 05, 2006

A study showing horses change their back position and alter limb movements to adjust to a rider's weight was presented Tuesday in Canterbury, England.

The research by Patricia de Cocq and colleagues at Wageningen University in the Netherlands shows a horse's saddle and the weight of its rider can directly affect equine performance, causing spinal abnormalities in racehorses and show jumpers.

The researchers analyzed horse biomechanics with and without 165 pound loads. The scientists also measured the degree of back-extension and flexion using data obtained on the relative position and angle of the horse's vertebrae. They found weight induces an overall extension of the back, which may contribute to soft tissue injuries.

"We consider the changes in limb movement to be a compensatory mechanism for the changed back-position", said de Cocq. "If causes of back pain are known, preventive measures can be taken. The techniques used in this study can be used to compare the comfort for the horse of different saddle designs, which may then improve horse performance."

The study was presented Tuesday at the University of KENT during the annual meeting of the Society for Experimental Biology.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Bovril: a very beefy (and British) love affair

Jul 05, 2013

The makers of the beef extract called Bovril were pioneers in the dark arts of marketing.  Speaking tomorrow at the Oxford Symposium on Food & Cookery, Cambridge University historian Lesley Steinitz will ...

What holds energy tech back? The infernal battery

Jan 23, 2013

As 21st century technology strains to become ever faster, cleaner and cheaper, an invention from more than 200 years ago keeps holding it back. It's why electric cars aren't clogging the roads and why Boeing's ...

Recommended for you

Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

10 hours ago

Egypt's minister of antiquities says a team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered two tombs in the southern part of the country, one of them belonging to a writer and containing a trove of artifacts including reed pens ...

Study finds law dramatically curbing need for speed

Apr 18, 2014

Almost seven years have passed since Ontario's street-racing legislation hit the books and, according to one Western researcher, it has succeeded in putting the brakes on the number of convictions and, more importantly, injuries ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

Egypt's minister of antiquities says a team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered two tombs in the southern part of the country, one of them belonging to a writer and containing a trove of artifacts including reed pens ...

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

Airbnb rental site raises $450 mn

Online lodging listings website Airbnb inked a $450 million funding deal with investors led by TPG, a source close to the matter said Friday.