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Am I doing this all wrong?

This is a discussion on Am I doing this all wrong? within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        10-05-2011, 06:27 PM
      #11
    Super Moderator
    That picture in the top right hand corner of Ray's example shots is a terrible example, sorry. That rider is "waterskiing" on the reins and bracing agains the stirrup. At least, that is what I see.
    Kayty and All Shook Up like this.
         
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        10-05-2011, 06:33 PM
      #12
    Green Broke
    This one?
         
        10-06-2011, 06:37 AM
      #13
    Trained
    Yup that one, and I agree with TL.
         
        10-07-2011, 07:24 PM
      #14
    Green Broke
    Yeah, I wondered whether to put that one in but I figured we were looking at heel position so I threw it in.
         
        10-07-2011, 07:48 PM
      #15
    Trained
    I highly recommend the book Centered Riding by Sally Swift, she helps you visualize, sometimes through very strange concepts what your body should be doing.

    I haven't read the book for many years, but I must get another copy, but ideas like having a a piece of sting tied to your belt buckle that pulls you forward and up for each rise, and having your head hanging of a piece of elastic to get an upright but not stiff position.

    Someone who has read it more recently may chime in, me I'm off to search Amazon and Ebay, because I know I need her help
         
        10-15-2011, 05:29 PM
      #16
    Yearling
    As for relaxing, I used to be really tense, and even hold my breath sometimes without realizing it. It just takes time, and a good solid, seat and the confidence that you can ride well without thinking about it every single second. If you can try bareback, this practically forces you to relax and trust yourself and your horse. Sitting trot is also a good test for relaxation- if you're wondering if you're too tense, go into a sitting trot. Do you move with the horse, or do you bounce all over the place? If you're bouncing, that may be a sign you were too tense (or that you tensed going into the trot...so it's not the MOST reliable thing ever ). Also try to have someone in the arena with you if you don't have an instructor and shout out to you if you're too tense. Even non-horse people can tell when someone on horseback is tense.
         
        10-16-2011, 03:30 PM
      #17
    Weanling
    You shouldn't push your heels down. Your ankle lifts, and holds it there, while your seat balances. Stirrupless or with stirrups, my leg position doesn't change.

    You shouldn't be pushing off from your foot, but letting the back lift you, and then steadying through your leg.

    Very minimal weight goes into the stirrup. Also, your leg is a lot more still, when you do it properly, and not through your stirrups.
         
        10-16-2011, 03:45 PM
      #18
    Yearling
    Posting should be front to back, and barely at all, not up and down :)

    And as an added tip, remember that there should be a straight line from your head to your hip to your heel.
         
        10-16-2011, 04:45 PM
      #19
    Foal
    Hi, well, neither are right, actually, they are both half right. You need to focus on toes up, rather than heels down, because doing that makes you push down into the stirrups. You shouldn't need stirrups to post. Using your stirrups to post at first is okay, because you are trying to find the horses rhythm. What you need to do is drop your stirrups and cross them over the saddle, and post without them. NO, you don't need to focus on posting up, you barely have to clear the saddle. There is no need in seeing how high you can post. Go back to your "up and forward" style, but without shoving your feet in the stirrups, and you will get the hang of it. The main thing is posting without stirrups, you can get a trustworthy trotting horse and maybe someone to put you on a lunge line so you can practice. Or just go bareback, whichever way you are more comfortable. Posting should be done with your thighs and they will hurt really bad, but after I rode bareback and without stirrups for the past 4 or 5 years, I can go on and on and on...so it does pay off, and some equitation and medal classes do require w/t/c without stirrups. Good luck!
         
        10-17-2011, 08:44 AM
      #20
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by laughing    
    When I first started English (Hunter Pleasure, flat) I rode with my heels down and my weight on my stirrups and posted almost forward but pretty secure. (Up and forward, with the trot.) Then I started reading up on it and watching other people.


    I read that you shouldn't rely on your stirrups to post, but rather it all comes from the thigh & you should post barely forward but more up. I immediately changed my riding style.

    Now I have trouble keeping balance, I don't feel like I have the same good posture/positioning, and I lose the stirrup. (I never lost the stirrup before.)

    Was what I read/heard all wrong, and I was right the first time? Or am I just that low-skilled of a rider still?


    Thanks!
    When working on getting your heels down don't push from your hip it will make your leg move forward using your stirrups like a break instead of keeping your leg under you. Instead stretch your calf down and pull your toes up to get your heel down. The foot should not press hard into the stirrup instead it should only use the stirrup as a place to rest your foot. Pressing hard into the stirrup will cause your toes to go to sleep or your ankle/knees to become sore.
         

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