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Strain gauge measurement of rein tension during riding: a pilot study

  • Hilary M Clayton (a1), Wesley H Singleton (a1), Joel L Lanovaz (a1) and Gary L Cloud (a2)

A pilot study was performed using a strain gauge transducer intercalated between the bit and the left rein to measure rein tension dynamically during riding. The strain patterns consisted of a series of spikes with frequencies corresponding to two per stride in walk and trot and one per stride in canter. The highest tension recorded in each gait was 43 N at walk, 51 N at trot and 104 N in canter. Based on the results of this study, it is recommended that the methodology should be adapted so that both reins are instrumented simultaneously, data are transmitted telemetrically to eliminate the need for a tether connecting the horse to the computer, and kinematic data are synchronized with the rein tension recordings.

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1Preuschoft, H, Witte, H, Recknagel, St, Baer, H, Lesch, C and Wuthrich, M (1999). Ueber die Wirkung gebrauchlicher Zaeumungen auf das Pferdes. Deutsche Tierartztliche Wochenschrift 106: 169175.
2Singleton, WH (2001). Rein tension during horse-back riding activities. MS thesis, Michigan State University, East Lancing, MI, USA.
3Clayton, HM (1995). Comparison of the stride kinematics of the collected, medium, and extended walks in horses. American Journal of Veterinary Research 56: 849852.
4Clayton, HM (1994). Comparison of the stride kinematics of the collected, working, medium, and extended trot. Equine Veterinary Journal 26: 230234.
5Clayton, HM (1994). Comparison of the collected, working, medium, and extended canters. Equine Veterinary Journal Supplement 17: 1619.
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Equine and Comparative Exercise Physiology
  • ISSN: 1478-0615
  • EISSN: 1479-070X
  • URL: /core/journals/equine-and-comparative-exercise-physiology
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