|Normal Horse||Swayback Horse|
Swayback, or lordosis, is characterized by a horse having a drooping spinal chord behind the withers, creating a bowed topline. Although the condition looks as if it's painful, few horses with lordosis are experiencing pain.
Swayback, also referred to as saddleback, lowback, and hollowback, seems to have genetic and environmental causes. Horses as young as two years old can already display signs of lordosis. On the other hand, the condition may not begin to develop until after a horse has had multiple pregnancies or years of rough riding.
Horses with extra long backs are more prone to back problems including swayback. However, many horses with swayback are suitable for riding, although it's advisable to get a farrier's opinion on the strength and condition of your horse before beginning to ride.