Muscular and neuromotor control and learning in the athletic horse

McGowan, CM ORCID: 0000-0002-1946-9584 and Hyytiainen, HK
(2017) Muscular and neuromotor control and learning in the athletic horse. COMPARATIVE EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY, 13 (3). pp. 185-194.

Access the full-text of this item by clicking on the Open Access link.
[img] Text
Author accepted copy.docx - Author Accepted Manuscript

Download (67kB)


<jats:p>Athletic performance or the kinematics of locomotion is ultimately the result of the actions of muscles. Muscular actions differ depending on the muscle group involved with anatomical and functional properties depending on the primary roles of the muscle; from stabilisation to powering locomotion. The functional (contractile and metabolic) properties of a muscle are determined by its fibre type or relative fibre type proportions in the muscle. The actions of muscle require the coordination of the nervous system with muscle contraction to produce movement or resist movement to avoid unwanted motion and tissue damage. The coordination of muscular action with the nervous system is termed neuromotor control and it requires precise proprioceptive input from the periphery, processing and input from the central nervous system (including learned or trained movements) and involves timing of muscle recruitment as well as muscle contraction. Training of muscles involves training for strength (or force generation) and stamina with measureable physiological changes with training including increased fibre size, alterations in fibre type, alterations in glycogen concentrations and lactate transport and alterations in mitochondrial and capillary density. As well as standard athletic training, skills training can make the difference in athletic performance and injury prevention in the equine athlete. This involves training of neuromotor control; training motor skills by motor relearning and conditional learning. Practical specific training techniques can be used in injury prevention, rehabilitation post injury and maintenance of the athlete. In this review we will focus on the thoracolumbar and hindlimb areas of the horse and review the importance of muscular control of locomotion, neuromotor control, the physiological effects of training and practical ways to maximise performance potential by specific physiotherapy skills training.</jats:p>

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: fibre type, muscle, motor skills, strength, stamina, motor learning
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2017 06:15
Last Modified: 18 Sep 2023 22:59
DOI: 10.3920/CEP170001
Open Access URL:
Related URLs: