Performance Of The Flat Walking Tennessee Walking Horse Yearling Before And After A 60-Day Strength Training Regime
Holt, Kirsten Michelle
The influence of a 60-day strength training regime on the flat walking Tennessee Walking Horse (TWH) yearling performance was determined using behavioral, physiological, and biomechanical measurements. Four TWH yearlings participated in a 60-day strength training regime. Documentation was made on behavioral responses, and measurements were taken on respiratory rates and standing and flat walking kinematics. Means (SD) were determined for physiological and biomechanical variables, and paired t-tests (P=0.05) were performed. Morphometrics, kinematics, and temporal variables remained constant through training. The flat walk shared similar kinematics and temporal variables with the walk, except for the rhythm, bipedal support, head displacements, and hind fetlock joint motion. While respiratory rates were not significantly different in training response, the TWH yearling demonstrated more efficient respiration compared to the non-gaited trot. Training impact was limited to improved, desirable behavioral responses. Through survey responses by TWH trainers, additional training variables were indicated for future training protocols.