lower leg/ heels problems. everyones opinion welcomed please comment! :) - Page 2

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lower leg/ heels problems. everyones opinion welcomed please comment! :)

This is a discussion on lower leg/ heels problems. everyones opinion welcomed please comment! :) within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Horses heels problems
  • Legs heels thread

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    07-07-2012, 10:59 PM
Originally Posted by rascalboy    
I'm going to tell you something that might shock you: most of use don't like hunter's positions.
There, I said it. :)
EQ is really just where the rider sits 'pretty'. It doesn't actually mean you're in an effectivve position. It's actually ok for your legs to 'jiggle'. I'm not sure if you've noticed, but your horse's back and belly actually swing when he walks. (Watch him from the ground though, since a lot of hunter's horses are too stiff and actually don't swing through the back at all). If you are moving with the horse, then you're actually resisting the movement.
And guess what? You don't need heels down and toes out. Dressage people cringe when they see that. You understand that when the heels are down, it tightens the leg. Add that with "toes out", and you really have a problem. You put constant pressure on the horse's sides, essentially deadening them. Sitting in that position makes the horse stiff because you are unable to allow the back to swing. You also stiffen your knee and lock the hip, further impairing your ability to follow the horse's movement.
I would suggest something crazy: let your legs loosen, follow the movement, make your heels level with your toes, and turn your toes IN by rolling your foot so your weight is on your outside toes, not your big toe (this creates a level foot). You don't actually need heels down to keep your stirrup in place. The weight of your foot alone keeps the stirrup in place. You can even jump like that. Crazy right?
And moving onto your two-point... Most EQ two-points really suck for real riding. A lot of hunters haul those heels down, latch onto the horse with their legs so they don't fall off when they plant their hands on the mane and lounge on their horse's neck while posing prettily.
If you watch high level eventers or jumpers, you'll notice that their leg positions and posture look nothing like a lot of hunter's positions. That's because hunter positions don't really work for big jumps.
You actually have to move with the horse. You do not lean forward until the horse's legs are off the ground and you are 'popped' out of the saddle. Otherwise you're ahead of the horse. You should be balanced. If the horse disappeared from under you, you ought to be able to land on your feet. Most people wouldn't be able to do that.
Anywho, if you're really concerned with learning to work with your horse, go get a decent dressage trainer. If you really don't care and like how your horse is working now, then I'd say you're in good shape.
I love this hahah your first line made me giggle ! I also event so I know what you mean! When we do dressage I have to totally change my position from when I ride hunters. And I have an incredible trainer her name is Amanda Wilson, not sure if you've heard of her but she's been a blessing from my old trainer. Thanks for your reply! Xoxo -Fudge and Morgan
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    07-07-2012, 11:00 PM
And I will post a video of me riding! Im sure that will help but I have imporved a ton just by thinking about sinking my weight in my heels!

calves, heels, lower leg, shakey legs

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