Looking Down

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Looking Down

This is a discussion on Looking Down within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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    11-02-2012, 07:38 AM
Looking Down

I've been looking at pictures of myself riding lately and I noticed that I look down a lot. This only happens in dressage. I can jump all day and never look down. I think the problem is that I'm watching my mare's head because sometimes she twists it. I paid attention to what it felt like last time I rode and it was like when she relaxed her poll, I relaxed my "poll".

Is there a way to fix this? Are there exercises I can do, or do I just have to keep reminding myself every now and then to look up?
ThoroughbredJumper likes this.
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    11-02-2012, 12:34 PM
I find it easiest to look up if you "pose" or as my trainer says,"HEADLIGHTS!" hahaha line your chest up high and try and make it to where if you're looking straight through your horses ears you should not see anything. Girls have natural place markers ;D use em! And good luck!
PasoFinoPower likes this.
    11-02-2012, 12:37 PM
100 years ago, or so it seems, my old coach would make me ride with a soft neck support collar. Cured me! :)
    11-02-2012, 01:03 PM
Try riding like you are driving a car. Look in the direction you want to go, ride towards it,then turn your head to the next direction, rides towards THAT, etc. It's not a terrible habit--I look down a lot, too. Don't think I'd want to wear anything to force my head up, though.
ThoroughbredJumper likes this.
    11-02-2012, 01:05 PM
Go back even further in the good old days, put a cigarette in your mouth, now put a much loved ring, wedding band or engagement, etc, and hang that on the ciggy, now ride and don't drop it!
    11-02-2012, 01:07 PM
LOL that's great, I have to try this now just for the fun of it! (i don't have a looking down issue but this sounds fun) ill use a stick though ;D
    11-02-2012, 01:25 PM
@ Golden Horse - I remember that trick as a child, but we did it with popsicle sticks and Life Savers!
Golden Horse likes this.
    11-02-2012, 03:02 PM
Originally Posted by updownrider    
@ Golden Horse - I remember that trick as a child, but we did it with popsicle sticks and Life Savers!
That sounds more politically correct
    11-02-2012, 06:18 PM
Ugh! I've been doing the whole looking down thing since I started back riding, and I usually remember to look up WHEN I feel my horse isn't relaxing, so I try to relax and just go along for the ride instead of focusing on him. It takes a real concerted effort to remember to keep all your body parts where they belong.....hang on I think I left my head over at the barn!!!!! Can some one proof read for me
    11-02-2012, 07:51 PM
Thanks guys. I know it's not a huge deal, but it makes for some pretty bad pictures. I can look from place to place when jumping, but with dressage, I know exactly where the letters are and so I don't feel like I need to look for them all the time. I had an old trainer who got duct tape and taped my pony tail to the back of my jacket so I would look up. That hurt! @Muppetgirl- I've started to realize that my horse won't relax until I look where I'm going. I'll try the popsicle stick and lifesaver trick. Hopefully between my horse and this exercise, I will be fixed eventually :)

Here is a picture from our last dressage test to give you an idea of what I mean-
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updownrider likes this.

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