Horseback Riding for MS: Can It Help Wit... - My MSAA Community

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Horseback Riding for MS: Can It Help With Symptoms?

IFwczs
IFwczs
β€’23 Replies

Since we are on the subject of horseback riding, it's supposed to help with MS. I wouldn't dream of doing it, it's definitely not safe for me (and my husband was really opposed to the idea), but Mitt Romney's wife who has MS was doing it.

Here is an article about horseback riding for MS:

everydayhealth.com/multiple...

23 Replies
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Somebody shared with me that hanging around a big animal with a slow resting heart rate automatically makes us feel good.

πŸ’›πŸ’™I too have heard that, 🐎🐴I am gonna get back up on a horse soon, I love horseback riding, it feels so freeing, & when you loap (Gallop), w/the wind in your hair, u almost feel like ue flying!🐦Wee...πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜‰πŸ’žπŸ’–πŸ’•Love ya!---Jazzy

I couldn't agree with you more and hope you get back up on one soon!

I myself,am going to practice by jumping on my husband's back at random times. If I can stay on longer than 7 seconds,I will know that I am ready to take the next step!

πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒLOL!! Rollong On Laughing Floor!πŸ’πŸ’πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜› Maybe i shud too.. Yeeeehaw, giddy'up Honey!πŸ˜›πŸ’–πŸ’•Love ya!---JazzyπŸŒΉπŸ’œ

My husband's working on the tv right now and I am so tempted to jump on his back!LOL!

I really like horseback riding. You're just giving me more convenient excuses to go do it.πŸ€”πŸ€—πŸ˜

falalalala
falalalala
in reply to Peruzzot

Feel free to start my training program and just jump on someone's back. Family member,neighbor,friend,complete stranger.....it's all free!

Peruzzot
Peruzzot
in reply to falalalala

I'd rather use a horse. They're friendlier...bigger too😁

falalalala
falalalala
in reply to Peruzzot

That's it! I am going to jump on hub's back....

He dropped me off at the fridge and told me to make him a sandwich.

IFwczs My guess is that taking on any new activity has benefits of several sorts, cognitive, emotional, and in the case of riding, physical. I recently began taking drawing lessons, not with the aim of making art, but of learning to represent on paper what I can see before me. Three years after beginning, I still don't produce art but when I am studying the object before me, preparing to draw, my mind works in new ways (i.e., new to me), My assumption is that new neural pathways have been formed in my brain because even when I am not getting ready to draw, I observe the world more carefully, noticing it in ways I overlooked before, aware of how contours are revealed or obscured, how textures affect light, and on and on. I have a young friend who takes riding lessons. She does not have MS, but when she and her mother stopped by on New Year's Eve, she told me about her first lesson in riding without holding onto the reins, learning to control her mount with only the pressure of her seat and thighs. Her mother noticed the change in posture that this produced; the daughter noticed the sensation of using her body in a new way. Until I am ready to break another bone or two, I am not going to get up on a horse, but I remain willing to try a new activity, trusting that it will benefit me in possibly unanticipated ways.

Iona60
Iona60
in reply to goatgal

Trying new activities is a great idea. I find that I've stopped many things that I used to do because it's now harder and takes longer. I'm hoping to suck it up and try things again. Let's get a thread found in new things to try.

falalalala
falalalala
in reply to goatgal

Makes sense to me.

Your approach to art is similar to mine.As for the horseback riding,my main concern is this: control using only the pressure of her seat and thighs. I used to ride that way. Now I wonder how well I could stay on at a fast pace. There is only one way to find out...

goatgal
goatgal
in reply to falalalala

falalalala Well there's no need to start at a gallop! Perhaps a walk, then a trot, followed by a canter...and surely there are other possible gaits to try! As for me, I am trying one step, two steps unassisted, thinking about the route to the mailbox down the hill, across the road at a leisurely tortoise speed before working up to box turtle headed for the pond speed!

falalalala
falalalala
in reply to goatgal

:)

goatgal
goatgal
in reply to falalalala

falalalala The more I think about this, the more I think...though I know I won't ride a horse again, my imagination puts sweet feed and hay in front of a calm and docile Percheron gelding. I sit with my knees pressed into his warm bulk, no saddle, no bridle, no reins...and all my muscles are involved just sitting there, sitting straight, and adjusting to his slightest movement as he shifts his feet, pulls hay from the rack and his broad body moves beneath me.

falalalala
falalalala
in reply to goatgal

They are one of my favorite breeds of horse. I wonder about saddles that are modified t keep someone in?

I saw a program on Richard lll who had idiopathic scoliosis.They demonstrated how he could function on horseback with a man who has the same medical condition. It was very interesting.

Peruzzot
Peruzzot
in reply to falalalala

When I start riding again it will have to be either a walk or full on gallop, depending on the horse in question a cantor maybe possible. Trotting is definitely out. Each impact my back would have in the saddle would send sharp shooting pain up and down the entire spinal cord. I shiver at the thought of that.

As a kid I rarely used the reins at all. They mostly stayed knotted and draped across my horse's neck. They were knotted together so they wouldn't fall and then get tripped on. After an incident with a jerk on a motorcycle i always kept a death grip on the saddle horn with one hand though. Jerk thought he'd be funny and gunned his engine next to my pony. That spooked not only Scotty but my dad's horse, Buck, right behind me. Both of them reared up. I tumbled off of Scotty, landed on my back hitting my head on the road. Buck's hooves were bigger than my head. I was only 3 at the time. All the wind had been knocked out of me and I couldn't move. I tried because I saw Buck's hooves coming straight for my face. Luckily Buck saw me in time and spread his legs out as far as he could so he wouldn't step on me. But while he was trying to get his balance under control he hit my forehead with his bit and knocked me out. That was my second concussion for the day. After that the death grip on the saddle horn has always been there. I have to make a conscious effort not to do that. I have no idea what happened to the jerk.

falalalala
falalalala
in reply to Peruzzot

Wow! You had a good horse and I'm glad you're alright.

I was taking the saddle off one and fell underneath.He was such a good boy,he made and effort to avoid stepping on me.

I can't say the same for my dog. If I am on the ground,he wants to sit on my lap.

Peruzzot
Peruzzot
in reply to falalalala

I had another pony named Jamie. She had a sense of humor. She would hold her breath while I was tightening the saddle. I had barely started to get on when the entire saddle/ blanket setup and me were suddenly under her belly instead of on her back. She looked at me underneath her with this look that seemed to ask "what are you doing there?" My dad and all the horses were laughing their butts off!

On another day we had stopped at a river to refill canteens and let the horses drink. I was still on Jamie when she decided that she needed to cool off some more and took me for a swim. I didn't know how to swim yet and I floated up off of the saddle. I grabbed her tail as she turned around to head back where I could touch the bottom. She drug me back to shore. Nothing like be towed to shore holding onto a horse's tail. She kept checking on me to make sure my head was above water. It was actually a lot of fun.

I've had them try that saddle trick too!LOL

As for a horse life guard? That is awesome!

Mitt Romney's wife even does Dressage.

I have been a horseback rider for 20+ years. I credit the sport for keeping many of the MS symptoms at bay before I was officially diagnosed in 2018. It's a great activity that you can do at different levels. Now that I have MS, I'm even more dedicated to it because it forces me to move, stay active, and be social.

Some days when I'm tired, I don't ride and just enjoy my horse on the ground. Grooming him is very relaxing, or even just grazing and being outside. On good days, I still do a full lesson, same way as prior to MS.

Riding is great in that it works on your balance, strengthens your core and many other muscles, and builds your confidence.

If you've never done it before, it's never too late to start. I've been riding with a guy who started at the age of 75. It was one of the dreams of his life. Just make sure to work with a good professional, and good horses.

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