Help at canter

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Help at canter

This is a discussion on Help at canter within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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    10-05-2011, 06:40 PM
Help at canter

Hello Everyone, I am new to the forum I have started lessons again after a 12 yr gap!! I have picked up the posting trot great but I CANNOT get the canter down. I keep losing my balance in the saddle and I actually fell off during my last lesson My question is this, is there anything I can do when I am not cantering to help with my balance or is the only way to get the feel is to just keep cantering....Please help, it just looks so darn easy when I see everyone else canter and it is so frustrating Thanks!
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    10-05-2011, 07:18 PM
Sounds like you need to work on your balance first, then worry about the canter. Maybe do some trotting without stirrups. Personally, I had a tendency to lose my balance trotting with no stirrups when going around bends. Also, trotting over trot poles with no stirrups is no easy task for me either! If you had your core more balanced, you wouldn't lose it at the canter
    10-05-2011, 07:20 PM
Well, first off welcome to the forum! And welcome back to riding!
Don't feel too bad, it takes the average person some time to get the rythm and feel of the canter down. It might be that the horse you are riding has a particularly hard to follow canter. It differs a lot from horse to horse.
I am spoiled in that respect, as Mac has the nicest, easiest canter inthe world to ride. And that has helped me a lot to be more comfortable at the canter; riding an easy to canter horse.

As for things to do at home, hm m m . I suppose anything that helps to strengthen your core muscles.

Some people say that riding on a swing is somewhat like cantering, you know, the action of "pumping".

I think I'd just relax and try to realized that it just takes time. Rest easy knowing that you are going down the same path everyone does, and you might fall off a few times on the way. I still do!
    10-06-2011, 12:21 PM
Personally I wouldnt worry about the canter right now bc you don't have the strength to sit to it correctly yet. Work on trotting and walking exercises and building up your abs and legs and then after a couple weeks or month(s) depending on how often you ride, then go back to the canter. Bc it really is about core strength and calf strength to sit the canter correctly
    10-06-2011, 01:45 PM
I agree, don't worry about the canter just yet. One thing that I have found really beneficial that is sometimes overlooked is bareback riding, just riding without stirrups is great too, but when you ride bareback you really have no choice but to learn the rhythm of your horse and get a feel for his or her movements, start slow and build your balance and strength bareback, and when you get into the saddle you will not only feel more in tune with your horse's movements, but you will notice better balance. Another thing I would suggest is working on your core strength, like the others said, I think that sometimes people don't put as much emphasis as they should on their own fitness when riding. Doing yoga and/or Pilates type workouts are wonderful for this, along with the exercise ball. I do Pilates and Yoga and work with an exercise ball and they work wonders with not only my riding but also give me a general great feeling of health! I hope some of this helps! Good luck and everyone and I mean everyone falls off!!

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