Thursday, July 16, 2015

chiro afterthoughts: recovering fully

Ok this is kind of a quickie post so bear with me. I was out of the office yesterday (for jury duty ugh... I mean civic pride has a place and everything but does anyone really look forward to jury duty??) and am gearing up for a work trip next week so things are a little nutso. 

But I DO have things to share. Lessons And MEDIA!! Woot woot.... except most of my media magic happens on the work computer (only on breaks, naturally!) so you're going to have to wait a little longer, sorry. 


a quick preview tho: the helmet cam has been moonlighting as a fixed position cam until I can get it securely attached to my helmet
Anyways I'm just going to share some quick thoughts about how Isabel is doing since her adjustment this past weekend. The short story? She feels GOOD. Really good. 

The slightly longer story is that I feel pretty down about just how bad things had gotten, and am really determined to make progress towards getting her to a pain-free place. 

The chiro wanted us starting out long/low and I took it a step further and tried long-lining. My abilities to get Isabel stretching under saddle are dubious at best, but the long lines work. So we started there. And I loaded on the praise when she stretched. Then hopped on after about 20min to try and recreate the stretching using techniques from my bio-mechanics trainer. And again with the praise. Isabel got the idea pretty quickly - and also is maybe starting to think that stretching feels good. So she's doing it really frequently now. 


the fish eye lens makes it a definite upgrade from just setting a phone on the standard. makes for interesting pics when Izzy gets up close and personal for her beauty shots tho!!
And her flat work feels really really good. I'll have more details to share later tho. Part of me is a little curious about if the good stuff is coming from my intensified focus on the subject, or the adjustment, or some combination of both. It doesn't really matter tho. She's doing well right now and I want to continue that trend.

We're also doing lots of liniment massages that produce frenzies of yawns and snorts, and lots of belly lifts - also prescribed by the chiro.

Newly re-located honorary barn mate, the Miseventer (she blogs now - go check her out! she's the other rider from our xc lesson with Dan a few weeks back), helped me figure out my belly lift technique, since I can never seem to attain the same lift that everyone else can. And actually, with the mean and dirty look Izzy gave her afterwards, maybe I'm glad I made her do it instead of me!! (side note: no wonder I'm so soft on this mare... she's got me trained up!)


So yea.... I'm trying to be really diligent in doing everything I possibly can for this mare between now and our follow up appointment. But honestly I think it's a chronic issue. The above picture kinda sorta gives a sense of what we see in person: Isabel is very unevenly muscled from side to side, and her right hip is higher than the left. 

I've sorta known this for a while... but was maybe in denial about it. But no more! 

I know there are a lot of you out there who have dealt with back issues far more serious than soreness.... but really my borderline hypochondriac senses are a tangled mess right now so I'm grateful for any recommendations you might have for helping Isabel out!

24 comments:

  1. Just breathe, Iz will be fine! You are doing all the right things to keep her comfortable and happy, and her owner should be OVERJOYED to have you caring for her! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. lol good advice - i'm trying to back slowly away from the ledge of neurosis... it's hard tho! haha...

      Delete
  2. so so happy to hear she is feeling better - I can tell you from what I have seen in person since the adjustment she looks GREAT!!

    Miseventer can share her stories about her last horse who had some really terrible back issues and they came out on the other side!

    As far as feeling down...we are in the same boat. All I can offer is that you both have come so far in the short time I have known you and seen the two of you under saddle. Izzy looks like a different horse! You both are great :) The proof is in the pudding

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thanks! she really is doing better from the adjustment, and it's pretty evident in watching her go. i just hate knowing that the pain had gotten that bad, and yet she was still SO GOOD despite it! only path is forward, tho, right?

      Delete
  3. You're being such a good horse mama :) Don't beat yourself up, you're doing everything the vet/chiro is saying and it's clearly working! You guys are looking great and it's only up from here on out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thanks - that's what i'm hoping!

      Delete
  4. Look at it this way: horses that are pasture puffs often still need chiropractic help. Her quality of life and fitness is MUCH better thanks to you! Just like humans, our bodies get sore from use. The fact that you want to learn to make her more comfortable and make her job easier is awesome and makes you a great horsewoman. Don't beat yourself up<3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. haha that is very true - we have horses at our farm that barely work and still end up throwing themselves all out of whack lol

      Delete
  5. The worst thing a rider can do for their horse is nothing! As in no fitness, no training and no muscling etc. You are working on fixing some of her weaknesses and that is awesome! Don't be too hard on yourself :)

    Oh and BOT products are magical. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. we're certainly trying to fix it, that's for sure!! i have some BoT saddle pads and a barn mate has the mesh sheet... maybe i'll try borrowing that every now and then?

      Delete
  6. You're such a good "owner". Glad Ms Izzy is feeling better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. lol thanks - tho if i were actually an owner all this extra $tuff might not actually be possible... but regardless i'm glad she feels better too!

      Delete
  7. Do you have accessible and recent video of her trotting and cantering to the left and the right? For comparison? Bring it with you, or upload it, and we'll look at it this weekend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i'm actually working on some video right now, but nothing super close up unfortunately. we'll take a look anyway tho!

      Delete
  8. I'd venture to say that most horses (and most humans!) are crooked in some manner. Perhaps conformationally, perhaps muscularly, whatever. Perfect symmetry is rare. You're taking reasonable steps to deal with it so Iz is very lucky to have you and you should pat yourself on the back as much as you pat her. =D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yea you're right - i certainly don't expect her to be perfectly symmetrical. but i also don't want to be adding to the problem either so hopefully there's a better balance point that we can find :)

      Delete
  9. Chiro can make such a huge difference. Glad it's helping.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'm so crooked. You are awesome for helping her out!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i think we're all a little crooked haha. but we do what we can!

      Delete
  11. This makes me want to try acupuncture on mine. You're doing so much to help Isabel out! The crookedness means that it will just be an ongoing maintenance issue, just like in people.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you should try it! and yea the ongoing maintenance bit is key, i think

      Delete
  12. I've never had chiro done on any of my horses, but I really need to get my butt in gear cuz I've only heard good things about it. I'm glad it has worked so well for Izzy and that that she is already showing such significant improvement!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i've tried to keep her on a regular adjustment schedule bc i does think it helps her feel better, and it gives me an opportunity to work with a professional about what her needs are and where i should focus my attention. so far so good!

      Delete