ANAL­Y­SIS OF GAL­LOP­ING STYLE

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In an or­di­nary trans­verse gal­lop (se­quence A), there is only one pe­riod of sus­pen­sion—dur­ing which the horse gains ground ef­fi­ciently be­cause he flies fric­tion­lessly through the air. Sus­pen­sion fol­lows fore­limb push; hind limb push merely serves to roll the horse for­ward onto his fore­limbs. Se­quence B shows a trans­verse gal­lop with two pe­ri­ods of sus­pen­sion. The first is cre­ated by very pow­er­ful push of the hind limbs which thrusts the horse through the air in a low arc, as if over a low jump. To pro­duce this ex­tra pe­riod of sus­pen­sion, the horse’s back must be ex­cep­tion­ally elas­tic and he must have the abil­ity to stretch his fore­limbs far for­ward. The horse then lands upon one fore­limb, then the other, from which he pushes off for the sec­ond pe­riod of sus­pen­sion, which is like that for an or­di­nary gal­lop. Only bet­ter con­formed, bet­ter co­or­di­nated and more pow­er­ful horses use this run­ning style, and they are in­evitably faster than their com­pe­ti­tion.

SE­QUENCE A: OR­DI­NARY TRANS­VERSE GAL­LOP, ONE PE­RIOD OF SUS­PEN­SION PER STRIDE SE­QUENCE B: ROTATORY GAL­LOP, TWO PE­RI­ODS OF SUS­PEN­SION PER STRIDE

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