Sitting trot on TB

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Sitting trot on TB

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    09-07-2011, 09:21 AM
Sitting trot on TB

Hi everyone, I started leasing a 7 year old OTTB about two months ago. I would like to be able to get a good sitting trot on him while riding english. Unfortunately, his trot is so bouncy it as if I am being ejected from the saddle. I am afraid my attempts have been quiet laughable. Aside from "hanging in there" and working on my quad strength, do you guys have any other advice for a good sitting trot on a super bouncy TB?

Thank you!
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    09-07-2011, 10:04 AM
You just have to get used to his gait. The more you practice the better you will get. Good luck!
    09-07-2011, 10:18 AM
This takes a certain amount of balance and skill before hand but.....

It helps to ride with just a bareback pad. This way you can better lengthen your legs and do not have stirrups to brace against and encourage your bouncing. It is also better motivation to stay on:)
    09-07-2011, 11:01 AM
What type of saddle do you have? I have a jump saddle and an all purpose saddle, both Bates. I find the jump saddle bouncier.

Also, check you leg position. Loose legs hanging down with long stirrups improves my sitting trot. As I get better, I can afford shorter stirrups, but I still find shorter stirrups harder to sit the trot.

Also, heels under hips seems pretty important for sitting the trot. I haven't always had the flexibility to do that with a loose leg, but now that I finally can, it helps a lot. As my heels move back under my hip, my shoulders come back and all my weight goes into the saddle.

In truth, my horse can still go into a choppy trot that is hard to sit. When he does, I usually just bounce harder until he decides it is easier to trot smoother.
    09-07-2011, 11:06 AM
One word - Relax!

Stop trying to so hard to sit still. Take a good long deep breath and relax.

You can not sit a bouncy trot if you are stiff. Usually the more you try to not move the more stiff you get which makes you bounce more.
    09-07-2011, 02:39 PM
Always is correct - you need to relax and let your legs hang down to sit.

1. See if you can find a dressage saddle that fits you and the horse. If it is a good saddle then it will help guide your legs into the proper position (knees/thighs pointed NOT straight ahead but towards the ground out on front of you).
2. While you're looking for a saddle like this you need to work on getting the horse to step underneath itself with it's hind legs and reaching forward into the bridle. Use (long) legs to encourage horse forward then half halts (HH's) to keep horse from running forward so that instead horse takes bigger steps (more over-track).
3. Keep rein length so that horse has head slightly above the vertical yet nose is only slightly in front of the vertical AND there is an "arch" in the neck. You know the arch is correct when you see the middle of the neck on both sides have a "bulge" to it.
4. Lastly once you have 1-3 done then start sitting a few strides at a time until you bounce too hard, then go back to rising until you're ready to try again. If 1-3 are correct (done correctly, saddle fit is correct and a good saddle) then you'll be able to sit. Gripping with legs (thighs or knees) will cause you to bounce harder. Also - lifting ribcage when you would "rise" in the post helps you to sit easier, as does looking straight ahead - NOT down.
    09-07-2011, 03:03 PM
Some people might freak, but you could also try a western saddle for a few months. If & when you start to bounce out of alignment, instead of slowing you can grab the horn, wiggle your butt, loosen your leg - and keep moving.

When I first started sitting the trot, I found I had to fatigue my body into relaxing, which didn't happen for me riding English. Slowing or stopping and gathering myself together gave me too much rest time, and I started back up still tense. With the western saddle, I could keep going for 30 minutes, which was enough to tire me into relaxing.

I'm now mostly a western rider, but I rode my Bates yesterday and everything I had learned while riding western helped me to relax into the saddle and feel comfortable. And once I learned how to relax my leg and settle into a western saddle, I had the option of shortening the stirrup and riding like that in a jump saddle.

Just a thought.
    09-07-2011, 03:09 PM
Thank you guys for all your help! I agree that relaxing is a major fault, I get very tense when I concentrate! I will definitely try the longer leg tip also. I hadnt thought of that. Should I maybe try taking my feet out of the stirrups while I do this? I ride in an all purpose english saddle.
    09-07-2011, 03:16 PM
Taking your feet out of your stirrups to get the feel of being relaxed and long works wonderfully.
VelvetsAB likes this.
    09-07-2011, 03:57 PM
Originally Posted by Alwaysbehind    
One word - Relax!

Stop trying to so hard to sit still. Take a good long deep breath and relax.

You can not sit a bouncy trot if you are stiff. Usually the more you try to not move the more stiff you get which makes you bounce more.
This 100%

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