A Research project in Suspensory Ligament Injury in Dressage Horses

Investigations conducted for the Centre for Equine Studies at the Animal Health Trust (AHT) have highlighted the need for effective prevention strategies for suspensory ligament injury in the dressage horse. In clinical studies at the AHT, approximately 30% of dressage horses suffered from a suspensory ligament injury.

In order to understand this high incidence of injury it is essential that we take a holistic approach as it is likely to be from multiple risk factors. Based on our previous findings, gait characteristics, arena surface, muscular strength and limb stability are all implicated in the cause of injury.

The support of the Elise Pilkington Charitable Trust means that upon completion the information produced can provide immediate, beneficial and directly applicable advice to dressage trainers, riders and owners on training methods to minimise injury, thus developing evidence based prevention strategies and producing a substantial impact on dressage horse welfare.