Moving on to the pelvis. When I first learned about the pelvis adjustments I wondered how on earth was I going to put a pelvis back in place?! I'll never be strong enough! However, it was not as hard as I thought it would be and if you use your whole body, it's actually quite easy.
When assessing the pelvis, I look for a drop in the hindquarters as I watch the horse trot away from me. This indicates that, of course, the pelvis is dropping to that side. Another indication are the stress points. The stress points around the hip bone, when sore, indicate that there is misalignment in the pelvis and it's usually on the opposite side. The reason they're usually sore on the opposite side is from referral of weight. If their pelvis is dropped, or rotated to the left, then the horse tends to refer its weight to the right side to compensate. When they refer weight like that, it makes the areas on the right (opposite) side tight and sore because they are using that side more. Comprende?
Have you ever heard of 'dog tracking?' If any of you haven't, it's basically when a horse moves crookedly. So when you watch them trot away or towards you, you will notice that their hind end travels out to the side. This movement usually indicates that the pelvis is most likely rotated.
A little side 'safety' note: Always watch for kicking! I worked on a horse around Barriere that was old, calm and sweet.. until I got to his hind end. He let me check all the stress points and the drop in his pelvis, but as soon as I went to the side to adjust him, he threw his ears back and gave a small kick. In his case, I wasn't able to get anywhere near his hind end after that, so sadly, his pelvis did not get adjusted. Had I been more experienced and known about this habit I might have been able to get it shifted back before he realized what I was doing. So watch those hind legs!