The first signal of incorrect riding, the false bend in the neck, also has an influence on the way your horse moves. As Morgan Lashley explained, with a false bend, the brachialis muscle is more active. This is the muscle that has an influence on bringing the front legs up and forward.
When the brachialis muscle is overly activated, in combination with a ‘hollow’ back, this can lead to the second sign of incorrect riding: disturbed coordination in the gaits.
In the image below you see an example of disturbed coordination in the gaits:
You can recognize a disturbed coordination quite easily in trot, but don’t forget it also shows in the other gaits. If the horse’s neck is forces and hold back by the rider, the horse can’t really swing and finish the strides in a good natural way.
Here you see that the horse has a very short neckframe and hind legs that aren’t coordinating with the front legs.
Like you can see in the image above, the arrows are not pointing in the same direction. When you have a horse that has a good coordination in the gait, you will see that when you draw these arrows they will point the same way.
So you often see that these horses have an expressive front leg, but without the hind leg coming under the body to carry more weight.
In the video below I explain the difference in what happens to the coordination of the legs when a horse is ridden from back to front or from front to back.
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