I heard a phrase at a CE not long ago: "We have become so used to seeing dysfunctional horses that we see them as normal." That really stuck with me. When I look at Facebook and see obviously dysfunctional horses being praised for their movement or have a horse come in that was vet checked as "sound" but clearly has pain and dysfunction, I remember that for a vast majority dysfunction has become normal. Even professionals have a hard time seeing dysfunction if all they have to choose from are dysfunctional specimens. How many of us take our horses to the vet just to show them how good they feel? None of us. We only take them to the vet when they are dysfunctional. So, the vet sees dysfunction all day and mildly dysfunctional horses get passed as sound. Trainers don't get horses that are not having problems. We get horses that the owners are struggling with. Soon all we see is dysfunction and dysfunction becomes normal. The only way to break this cycle is for all of us to continue to develop our eye to what functional movement and posture look like. When we do that, we can intervene on behalf of the horse earlier in the cycle of dysfunction and help the horses before they break down completely.
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