• VOLUME 12 • © Copyright HORSES For LIFE™ Publications
How the SENSE Method Helped
A Horse with Hock Problems
The eight-year-old Dutch Warmblood lumbered out of his stall. "See how stiff he is!", exclaimed Kim, his owner and rider. The gelding, George, did appear reluctant to move. He also rope walked, his hind legs crossing the midline with each step.
George received the best of care. He was examined regularly by his veterinarian, who had injected his hocks a couple of times. He had chiropractic and acupuncture sessions. His farrier was top-notch and his tack fit well. Kim took lessons from the onsite dressage trainer and supplemented George's feed with appropriate nutraceuticals. Still, George's movement was not free and his rope walking particularly bothered Kim. Not only did it interfere with her dressage aspirations, but she worried that it signaled pain.
All the previous professionals had agreed that George would always rope walk. "It's just the way he is," they said. X rays revealed significant arthritic changes in George's hocks and Kim was told that this was the cause of his unusual movement. She had become resigned to the fact that the best she could hope for was to help slow the further degenerative changes that were certain to follow.
As I began my SENSE Method session with George, I noticed that his back and hind end were very tight. No wonder George was reluctant to move out! I gently pushed through his right point of buttock (his right seatbone or ischium). I watched as the small wave of movement I had created stopped in his ribcage. It had gone no further. A soft push on his left ischium produced even less movement through his body.
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