Spring Training for Seniors

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Conditioning horses is a popular topic this time of year. As the weather gets nicer for riding, many equestrians face the challenge of reconditioning horses who might have lost a step over the winter. For senior horse owners and riders, this task can prove more daunting than for riders with younger horses. It’s no secret that older horses take longer to get in shape than their youthful counterparts, and unfortunately, they might not be able to reach the same level of fitness they could in their younger days simply due to their increasing age.

Over the years, I’ve conditioned a lot of older horses. I’m used to starting slow, seeing how they handle work, and slowly moving forward until they gain the condition they need, be it for participating in riding lessons or simply hacking around the field.

Even though it’s taken longer than it used to, Dorado is finally nearing the good athletic condition we’ve been working towards

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Erica Larson, former news editor for The Horse, holds a degree in journalism with an external specialty in equine science from Michigan State University in East Lansing. A Massachusetts native, she grew up in the saddle and has dabbled in a variety of disciplines including foxhunting, saddle seat, and mounted games. Currently, Erica competes in eventing with her OTTB, Dorado.

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