Can't stay in the two point!!? - Page 2
 
 

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Can't stay in the two point!!?

This is a discussion on Can't stay in the two point!!? within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        07-05-2014, 06:44 AM
      #11
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by CowboysDream    
    And don't forget, you can ask your coach. He will be able to see where you are going wrong :) But yes like DancingArabian said keep practising, you are just developing your muscle and balance. I used to not be able to stand in my stirrups at the trot and now I can pretty much do it as long as I want.

    Something that helps is to get the horse to maintain the same speed and keep your eyes up and pick something to look at in front of you.
    Yeah! That's what my instructor told me to do too! He kept telling me in my first few lessons to look ahead and not down or at the reins... So I guess this is just a time/practice thing? Hmmm I hope I do get a hang of it quick because I really do want to learn to canter soon so that I can begin intermediate riding! I'll just take it one lesson at a time then rather than looking too far into the future! :)
         
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        07-05-2014, 06:56 AM
      #12
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck    
    If the only time you ride are during your lessons, my suggestion won't help you since they are all riding homework things.

    First, to answer your question about whether you should be gripping with your legs or standing in the stirrups, the answer is no. By that I mean neither is right. Ultimately what you need is positive friction. It's easiest to learn by riding without stirrups. Unfortunately it's a feel more than anything, so it's very hard to explain in words. It's a happy medium between sitting there with your upper body collapsed and your legs flopping around like noodles and sitting with a rigid body and legs clamped on. It's a combination of balance and using your inner core muscles to stabilize your own body to not overreact to the horse's movement.

    Now that I'm completely confused you, my suggested exercise for strengthening your position and finding your proper balance point for 2-point is, vary the amount of time your stay in the up phase when posting the trot. At first post normal. Then stay up 2 beats and down 1. When that gets easy, stay up 3 beats, down 1. When that gets easy, start mixing it up. Even sit a few beats. What this does more than anything is help you find the proper balance point over your feet. So you don't catch your horse in the mouth, grab mane when you first start doing it. You will most likely fall forward/backward the first few times until you find the sweet spot. Once you've done the exercise enough times to where you think you've got it, keep your hands on the mane as a backup, but let go of any real tension on it so you are effectively holding yourself up. Hope that helps.
    Thank you so much for the reply!! It wasn't confusing at all! I know what you mean by that 'feeling' that is hard to describe. Should I be bending at my knee when I hold the two point or should my legs be straight? Basically, should it 'look' like I'm standing in the saddle or should I look more like a jockey during a horse race? I did try the staying up for 2 beats thing but the bouncing motion made it really hard for me to stay up. I do have my last lesson for the week today so hopefully I'll have improved from yesterday!! How long on average should I be expecting to learn the two point in? Also even though I don't have my own horse (I live in a city :( ) I do ride everyday so I guess that is like homework in a way :/
         
        07-05-2014, 06:59 AM
      #13
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jaydee    
    How to Ride Two Point or Half Seat

    The basics of two point (half seat) - YouTube

    Two point is not about standing up in your stirrups - yes your weight should sink down into your heels but if you stand up in your stirrups your body won't be in the correct line for the half seat/2 point position
    She seems bent over in the upper body, is it supposed to be that way? Should I be leaning a little forward as well? I think I go more up than forward when trying to two-point, which is probably why I have to use my knees because my thighs are already above the saddle!! :O Oh my goodness! Is that what I'm doing wrong? Do I need to stick my bum out because at the moment it goes right out of the saddle and straight up
         
        07-05-2014, 07:40 AM
      #14
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by equitate    
    Stay in two point (also called balance position) is about 'balance'. If the leg is too far backward, you will fall forward (this should be illustrated by the instructor showing you (i.e. Pulling the leg forward, you fall back/pull leg back you fall forward). The stirrup leather should hang vertically, stirrup straight across the ball of the foot. Foot almost pointed forward, knees low. NEVER hollowing the back. Think about a kind of slightly in front of the vertical squat, close to the saddle, no locking of a joint nor pinching inward. Initially you think about reaching up and touching the ceiling, then do less and less.

    You have to learn to anticipate the horse's movement. That takes a while.

    If you push the heels down too much the leg will slide forward and you will fall back. You absolutely should NOT grip with the thighs or calves; the 'adhesion' there is from the feathering from an opened hip/straighter thigh/lower knee/feathering into the heel.

    If you stand in the stirrup you will be up onto your toes, but you want to think you are standing on a stair step and trying to touch your heels to the next lower step w/o becoming rigid in the knees.

    A good test (on a lunge line) is to put the hands straight out to the sides and anticipate movement. (It is rather like learning how to walk on a narrow balance beam, it is a learned skill.

    The more you do, the better you get. When I changed from western to english I worked on this 12 hours a day for three months (and won the east coast hunter title). Two point/posting w/o stirrups,e tc.

    The rider in the pix is standing too far up and hollowed in the back. When learning it is wise to have a neck strap (an old stirrup leather) or a part of a breastplate strap so if you accidentally fall back (into the saddle) you do not fall behind the motion and onto the horse's back.
    Wow!! I don't have the luxury of 12 hours a day and I'm not even sure I have the stamina to keep that up!! Congratulations on your win! That is the issue! I don't bend my back or hollow it in fact my back is the least of my worries. I think I'm rising straight up rather than being forward slightly unless I am supposed to go straight up in two point? When posting your hips move forward in a thrust motion is that what I should do when doing the two point or is it slightly different? I'll try the tips you've given me today!
         
        07-05-2014, 07:46 AM
      #15
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TXhorseman    
    I think that teaching a two-point position in a rider's 11th 35-minute group lesson seems unusual. The only reason I can think of for this is to save the horse's back. But if the rider plops down because of balance problems, the theory backfires.

    I initially encountered much difficultly when an instructor had me "stand in the stirrups." I never seemed to be able to achieve the balance. However, this instructor moved away, and I never tried the "two-point" position again for years. Now, it is no problem. Why? Because I have learned to relax when riding.

    Tension causes stiffness. Stiffness slows reaction time. Balance requires almost instantaneous shifts in balance. As your center of gravity rises, the requirement for quick changes in balance becomes more important.

    As you learn to relax, gravity takes over and your center of gravity drops. The lower your center of gravity, the more stable you become. Such relaxation is more easily achieved when a rider is sitting. It often helps to have a rider take his feet out of the stirrups so he is not trying to "push" his weight down which is actually counter productive and tends to raise the center of gravity.
    Yup I couldn't agree more with you!! I was definitely not very relaxed during the two point because I kept getting frustrated with myself for not being able to hold the position. I'll just take the lesson easy, not set sky high expectations like wanting to canter in two weeks and I'll do my best to stay relaxed. The thing is because my horses trot is soooo bouncy, sometimes I can't help but stiffen up. Oh well, I guess horse riding will teach me not only to relax when on horseback but also when facing any situation in my waking life!
    Chasin Ponies likes this.
         
        07-05-2014, 08:09 AM
      #16
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ShahzebNasir    
    Yup I couldn't agree more with you!! I was definitely not very relaxed during the two point because I kept getting frustrated with myself for not being able to hold the position. I'll just take the lesson easy, not set sky high expectations like wanting to canter in two weeks and I'll do my best to stay relaxed. The thing is because my horses trot is soooo bouncy, sometimes I can't help but stiffen up. Oh well, I guess horse riding will teach me not only to relax when on horseback but also when facing any situation in my waking life!
    A bouncy horse is a good reason not to stiffen your body. A relaxed and supple body can react to movement, whereas a stiff body is reacted upon and thrown around. Also, if the rider becomes stiff, the horse tenses, and the trot becomes rougher. Think of your legs as shock absorbers. Keeping you muscles relaxed and your knees loose, allow your legs to open and close slightly with the movement of your horse.

    The muscles and joints throughout the rest of your body work and adjust better to compensate for the movement of your horse if they, too, remain pliable.

    In one of the stories in Paul Belasik's book "The Songs of Horses", the narrator tells of traveling to Japan hoping to learn how to shoot arrows from the back of a horse by taking lessons from a Samurai master.

    The teacher spent what seem an inordinate amount of time trying to teach his few students to sit and breath without even getting on the one horse he had as his school. Once, he took them to a small building constructed on stilts and gave them full cups of tea. He told the students to sit and hold the tea while he went to do something. He cautioned them not to spill the tea on floor of the building his forefathers built. While they sat, the teacher went and got his horse. He took it beneath the building and had the horse lean against one of the pillars to shake the building.

    Trying to hold the cup still, one student spilled the tea on his clothing. Another spilled it on the floor. It was the student you kept his body loose who was able to let his body move with the shaking of the building while keeping his hands steady so the tea did not spill.
         
        07-05-2014, 12:29 PM
      #17
    Super Moderator
    OP - you need to look at the entire video - not just at the 'picture' at the start - I'm sure there are better ones out there but this isn't a bad tutorial and she does go on to discuss avoiding a hollow back towards the end
    The purpose of 2 point is to take weight off the horses back when galloping and extended canter and to put the rider in a the correct position for jumping so yes you will be leaning forwards - how much depends on what you're doing. In the UK we don't have the US hunter/jumper style of riding or those classes and the canter in our hunter classes is ridden in 'full seat' other than when asked to gallop or extend the pace and in the jumping phase of working hunter
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        07-05-2014, 03:09 PM
      #18
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TXhorseman    
    A bouncy horse is a good reason not to stiffen your body. A relaxed and supple body can react to movement, whereas a stiff body is reacted upon and thrown around. Also, if the rider becomes stiff, the horse tenses, and the trot becomes rougher. Think of your legs as shock absorbers. Keeping you muscles relaxed and your knees loose, allow your legs to open and close slightly with the movement of your horse.

    The muscles and joints throughout the rest of your body work and adjust better to compensate for the movement of your horse if they, too, remain pliable.

    In one of the stories in Paul Belasik's book "The Songs of Horses", the narrator tells of traveling to Japan hoping to learn how to shoot arrows from the back of a horse by taking lessons from a Samurai master.

    The teacher spent what seem an inordinate amount of time trying to teach his few students to sit and breath without even getting on the one horse he had as his school. Once, he took them to a small building constructed on stilts and gave them full cups of tea. He told the students to sit and hold the tea while he went to do something. He cautioned them not to spill the tea on floor of the building his forefathers built. While they sat, the teacher went and got his horse. He took it beneath the building and had the horse lean against one of the pillars to shake the building.

    Trying to hold the cup still, one student spilled the tea on his clothing. Another spilled it on the floor. It was the student you kept his body loose who was able to let his body move with the shaking of the building while keeping his hands steady so the tea did not spill.
    Wow!! That's a great example to give! Thank you! I did keep myself a lot more relaxed today and I found my rising trot to be so much easier even though I was forced to ride in sneakers (my boots broke literally 10 minutes before my class!)

    Didn't do the two-point today but I'll definitely apply the techniques and tips you've given when I ride again on Monday!
         
        07-05-2014, 03:14 PM
      #19
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jaydee    
    OP - you need to look at the entire video - not just at the 'picture' at the start - I'm sure there are better ones out there but this isn't a bad tutorial and she does go on to discuss avoiding a hollow back towards the end
    The purpose of 2 point is to take weight off the horses back when galloping and extended canter and to put the rider in a the correct position for jumping so yes you will be leaning forwards - how much depends on what you're doing. In the UK we don't have the US hunter/jumper style of riding or those classes and the canter in our hunter classes is ridden in 'full seat' other than when asked to gallop or extend the pace and in the jumping phase of working hunter
    Thank you so much for these photos!! Yes I should be leaning forward just slightly then! Although in the photo on the right of the man, it seems like he has quite a bit of weight in the stirrups! Now as a beginner I've heard that the stirrups are just there for your foot to rest so should I be using those? The video said that the rider should lift using the thighs so should my knees be pressed against the saddle? I tried the two point for a little bit in my lesson today and I stayed up longer when I leaned forward a little! Thank you so much for the help!
         
        07-05-2014, 05:44 PM
      #20
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ShahzebNasir    
    Wow!! That's a great example to give! Thank you! I did keep myself a lot more relaxed today and I found my rising trot to be so much easier even though I was forced to ride in sneakers (my boots broke literally 10 minutes before my class!)

    Didn't do the two-point today but I'll definitely apply the techniques and tips you've given when I ride again on Monday!
    Thank you for the feedback. It is always good to hear when someone tries something out and it works for them.
    ShahzebNasir likes this.
         

    Tags
    balance, halfseat, post, risingtrot, twopoint

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