Have you heard of 'Horseman Syndrome'? It's actually a thing. My first thought was are they talking about a cowboy being bow-legged? LOL
|Photo Credit: Pixabay|
Scientific American released an article in Mar/23 talking about a handful of skeletons found in Bulgaria that have this characteristic 'tell' of horseback riders. I didn't know that was a 'thing' either. Apparently, we've been riding horses for over 5,000 years. Cool.
Here is a link to the article: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/humans-started-riding-horses-5,000-years-ago-new-evidence-suggests/.
Horseman Syndrome as early as 3,500B.C.E. in Western Russia
|Note the position of the legs to denote a horse rider.|
Many of the skeleton remains belong to the Yamnaya people, a nomadic tribe from the Ukrainian steppe, who have been long associated with horses by archaeologists. These horsemen swept across much of Eurasia from modern-day western Russia. These same people also influenced the Indo-European languages spoken today. Ex. English, Celtic, Germanic, Spanish, Hindi, Russian and Persian.
So in 2015, some DNA was sequenced of these human bones to around 3,500 BCE which archaeologists set the date for horse domestication.
Oh, My Aching Bones
"Bones are living tissue in living creatures" where you can read life histories from bones. I knew that bone doctors like Temperance "Bones" Brennan (from the TV series Bones) could read the bones for all kinds of forensic evidence.
So Horseman Syndrome is detected by a pattern of marks on the skeleton that show an adaption to riding a horse - biomechanical stress caused by repeated movements. According to the article: "Horseman syndrome involves changes to the thigh bones, pelvis and lower spine." "You use muscle groups in a way you usually don't do in everyday locomotion". Don't we know it! Back to the bow-legged cowboy again. Lol
The article doesn't suggest any cure or care for the still live horse riders but it's interesting to know what our skeletons will show.
Putting My Spin on a Sore Back and Legs from Repetitive Riding