Sitting the trot..some pointers needed...
 
 

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Sitting the trot..some pointers needed...

This is a discussion on Sitting the trot..some pointers needed... within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category
  • Should i stiffen my back when posting the trot
  • How to keep yourself from bouncing alot on a western saddle while trotting

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    11-08-2011, 06:19 PM
  #1
Yearling
Sitting the trot..some pointers needed...

In a sitting trot I'm a mess. I can't seem to get the rhythm of the trot down, and I just bounce, I'm not one with the horse whatsoever. My instructor gave me some pointers that seem to help a little bit. Anyone have any advice for me on how to not bounce all over the place?
     
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    11-08-2011, 06:28 PM
  #2
Yearling
Truely all I can say is get your horse to go as slow as possible if you can. That way you can start with a small sitting trot and let her go a little faster each time until she gets it. Id rather site my TB's trot that post all the time because she's soo slow in her gaits
     
    11-08-2011, 07:23 PM
  #3
Yearling
Can you get on the lunge line with at least no stirrups, or bareback?
     
    11-08-2011, 07:31 PM
  #4
Green Broke
If you are bouncing a lot you are probably sitting on your crotch and thighs, like an english rider. What you need to do is sit more on your butt cheeks not just your butt.
Think of your belly and core stretching and contracting, make sure your lower back is really loose too. Kinda make your self feel like jelly but at the same time your covered in rubber bands.
Tianimalz and Rocky1986 like this.
     
    11-08-2011, 09:30 PM
  #5
Foal
The key is to relax your back muscles. If you tighten up your back and hip and try to hold yourself as still as possible you will bounce. Think of a hard rubber ball, when you drop it, it bounces all over the place! But a soft one will just lay there when you drop it. You want your body to absorb all the shock and the only way to do that is by letting the muscles relax. Also make sure you are sitting on your seat bones and that your leg is underneath you. It should NOT be up by the girth, it should be hanging more straight under you like in dressage.
Ray MacDonald likes this.
     
    11-08-2011, 09:39 PM
  #6
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald    
If you are bouncing a lot you are probably sitting on your crotch and thighs, like an english rider. What you need to do is sit more on your butt cheeks not just your butt.
Think of your belly and core stretching and contracting, make sure your lower back is really loose too. Kinda make your self feel like jelly but at the same time your covered in rubber bands.
Just a question - how do us english riders (dressage in particular) manage to sit enormous, energetic true extended troton a huge moving warmblood if we sit on our crotch and thighs all the time, making us bounce?
I also suspect the OP is riding english given this is on the dressage section?

I have been drilled from day one, open the thigh, drop the knee, allow the pelvis and engage the core. I want to be able to feel my seat bones on the saddle, as well as lightly on my pubic bone.

Sit trot is always easier on a horse with a soft, swinging back. However, this is difficult to keep if you sit and bounce all over their back.
As an above poster said, start with keeping the trot very slow, get into the feel of sitting into the horse, allow your pelvis to swing in an upwards motion. As soon as you feel that you are starting to bounce, either walk or start rising. Once you're bouncing its near impossible to get your rhythm back, and we never, never NEVER punish a horse in the back. Look after his back, and he'll look after yours :)
Skyseternalangel likes this.
     
    11-08-2011, 10:17 PM
  #7
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayty    
Just a question - how do us english riders (dressage in particular) manage to sit enormous, energetic true extended troton a huge moving warmblood if we sit on our crotch and thighs all the time, making us bounce?
I also suspect the OP is riding english given this is on the dressage section?

I have been drilled from day one, open the thigh, drop the knee, allow the pelvis and engage the core. I want to be able to feel my seat bones on the saddle, as well as lightly on my pubic bone.

Sit trot is always easier on a horse with a soft, swinging back. However, this is difficult to keep if you sit and bounce all over their back.
As an above poster said, start with keeping the trot very slow, get into the feel of sitting into the horse, allow your pelvis to swing in an upwards motion. As soon as you feel that you are starting to bounce, either walk or start rising. Once you're bouncing its near impossible to get your rhythm back, and we never, never NEVER punish a horse in the back. Look after his back, and he'll look after yours :)

This is exactly right! I think what the person is referring to in english riding is many riders who ride in poor position. There are a lot of trainers out there teaching students to lean forward and fall onto their crotch. Of course, I would like to see these trainers showing records... but they are out there are more predominant in some parts of the country than others. This is not the correct way to ride english, english riders aim to evenly and balanced on their horses which is why a good english rider can sit such a huge extended trot!
Ray MacDonald likes this.
     
    11-08-2011, 10:51 PM
  #8
Trained
This may sound odd, but it worked for me...

If you have problems bouncing, then practice in a western saddle. The horn can help you regroup yourself while continuing to trot.

Tension - in your body and in your leg - is the enemy. But I had a terrible time relaxing in an English saddle. My legs were stiff, my back was stiff, and when I bounced around I got nervous and the stiffness got worse.

Working at it in a western saddle, and going until my body got tired enough that it WOULD relax, taught me how it felt WHEN relaxed. With time, you can do it better with mild tension in the core, but your body will learn that with time.

But I bounced because my legs were tense, because my knees were squeezing every time I got nervous, because I leaned forward when I got nervous, because my feet followed my shoulders forward...notice a trend?

Relax. Smile. Just keep going until it is fun to bounce. Long stirrups so you cannot prop yourself up. Breath in deep, hold for 3, exhale thru the mouth.

And I found all of that much easier to do in a western saddle. But once I learned it there, it felt right in an English saddle. I can now sit the trot in my bouncy Bates jump saddle. But I don't think I could have ever LEARNED to sit the trot in my bouncy Bates.

I'm not trying to get you to switch disciplines. I just find I need to learn 'scary' things in a western saddle, then go to an Australian saddle, and THEN I relax well enough to do it right in an English saddle. YMMV. Good luck.
     
    11-08-2011, 11:54 PM
  #9
Super Moderator
Here's one small tip: When you are riding the sitting trot, it's like rideing a wave. YOu want to be lifted by the horse's back, and you want to fall back with the horse's back, too. But there is where a lot of riders lose the wave; they don't fall back fast enough and end up being behind the motion.

So, just for a mental excersize, when you are trotting along, really focus on "down, down, down" when the horse is on the part of the trot where he is going down to hit the ground, really think of almost making your body go down with him, actively rather than passively. Of course, you cannot make yourself fall any faster than gravity makes you go down, but focussing on it mentally will help you to try to stay in sync with that part of the gait cycle.

The next beat is just "letting" the horse carry you up again.

You prbably don't do any worse at it than the average Jane. It just takes time and lots of practice.
Kayty likes this.
     
    11-09-2011, 12:44 AM
  #10
Green Broke
To expand on what Tiny said...also imagine your butt is made of lead and think "down" when you move coupled with the idea of your hips doing figure eights with the horses movement.. They have four legs, so there is a 4-beat tempo whereby YOUR hips are moving/ gyrating round- up-down around Right- up-down-around Left..a continuous- sinuous movement WITH the horse...but really SIT into the rhythm..
     

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