Those of you unfamiliar with this work will probably be flabbergasted at how powerfully fear can physically harm the body.
The good news is that the reverse is also true. When we help our horse find a deep comfort zone, they can release old traumatic events that have damaged their bodies in a way that looks miraculous, except that it happens all the time.
Gygs had sagged his back over the last couple of years, to the extent that saddle fitting had become quite a problem.
Jo took to our Deep Comfort Zone approach like a duck to water and it changed her horse’s shape dramatically. She displayed one of the most patient and thorough approaches to her lovely Appaloosa’s comfort zone that I had seen back then.
Jo patiently worked at getting every aspect of her being with her horse deep into his comfort zone, from his liberty work to catching to haltering to saddling to getting on to riding.
Gygs is one of those lovely, kind, gentle horses that do whatever you ask of him even though he is afraid. Like most horses, the tension and anxiety of the “not too sure” zone had become a habit with him long ago. Because of his gentleness, it was very easy to miss just how tight and tense his body was. And this tension had damaged his back muscles and they had withered away, giving him the sagged back.
Jo’s slow, painstaking approach to his deep comfort zone had Gygs raising his back by nearly half in the five day clinic. I sooo… wish we had taken photos at the beginning of the clinic, but we would never have expected such a spectacular result. This was a staggeringly positive change, in such a short time. As Jo keeps up the great work, Gygs will continue to develop back muscle that will enable him to carry her with power and joy.
If you haven’t seen them already, get a start on how to heal old back injuries for your horse in the FREE LESSONS The 9 Keys to Happiness with Your Horse. You’ll see when you get them, it’s a very big gift – the foundation philosophy behind what we do here.
If you’ve had those lessons and you’re ready for the next step in healing your own horse’s back, then have a look at our flagship program, Fast Track to Brilliant Riding, on that information page in the Healing for Horses section., you’ll see some video footage of one of the most badly damaged backs I’ve ever seen AND his recovery. That video still makes me teary even years later. 🙂