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Structure In Detail Digital Book

Structure In Detail Digital Book

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Structure in Detail


When you’re evaluating American Quarter Horse conformation, a horse’s overall balance ranks first in order of importance. But understanding the structural framework – bone, muscle and tendon – making up that overall balance is a must. The two complete each other. 

In Structure in Detail, equine conformation experts Dr. Jerry Black and AQHA judge Tim Finkenbinder show readers how to evaluate a horse’s structure.

While the Structure in Detail e-book focuses on conformation of the Quarter Horse, as Dr. Black says, “What we often do is evaluate characteristics that we’re excited about, and that might be color or type. There are things that are unique among different breeds and certainly among Quarter Horses we have conformational differences depending on discipline.

“But there are commonalities, and good conformation is good conformation.”

In this e-book, our two experts walk through specific parts of the horse, illustrating structural correctness and common abnormalities, such as: 

  • The ideal equine front limb
  • Over at the knee or back at the knee
  • Long, sloping pasterns or short, upright pasterns
  • Out at the knee or in at the knee
  • Bench kneed
  • Splints in horses
  • Toed-out horse, toed-in horse and horse that wings when he tracks
  • Camped out or standing under
  • Base wide or base narrow
  • Normal equine hind limb
  • Too steep or too long croup
  • Stifle joint angulation
  • Hock joints with too little angle or too much angle
  • Abnormalities to the hock joint, including bone spavins and bog spavins

Whether you want to be a more informed judge, breeder or owner, the goal of Structure in Detail is to add to your toolbox of resources in training yourself to evaluate horse conformation.

As Dr. Black suggests, one should consider two things when looking at the parts of a horse’s structural conformation: 

“I look for conformation that will promote soundness and durability. I ask, ‘How long is he going to stay sound doing what he does? Is he going to have a fulfilling career and is his conformation not going to hinder him? Or will he have pathological problems from the beginning?’ ”

You can download this 31-page e-book immediately following shopping cart check-out, or you can save it to your computer for future reading.