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Starting english again..need advice!!

This is a discussion on Starting english again..need advice!! within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Lower leg not staddy in saddle

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    01-05-2012, 03:11 PM
  #21
Trained
Good advice--I like the simulator. =b
I assume that you have a trustworthy horse? That said, work on your seat separately from reining. Therefore, I suggest riding "Western", with a slack rein while you work on your posting and your seat AND until you are comfortable with your new/old saddle. =D
While you walk you can check your foot position. Look down. You should NOT see your toes, but you may see the very, very tip of your toe. Lining up shoulder-hip-heel is more important in an English saddle for balance, than in a Western saddle, BUT, a good seat is a good seat regardless of equipment.
I'm sounding like a broken record here, but ride at the walk without stirrups for some of your 15 minute sessions. You also have better balance in an English saddle if you are sitting deep, and this will teach you what that deep seat feels like in this type of saddle.
Regarding reining, English asks you to keep a gentle contact with the horse's mouth. At the walk it will feel like "forward-back, repeat" due to the horse moving his head to balance. At the trot the head remains stationary. At the canter, it is again, "forward-back, repeat" to match the stride. Practice this at the walk, preferably at the end of a riding session, when you and your horse are more relaxed. Since you already ride, the transition won't be difficult for you. It will be a lot like a musician who is learning a new instrument--I've done that twice, now. With the first instrument you also learn to read and interpret music, but with the second instrument, it just comes faster. When the "English" saddle was used everyday (before the automobile) nobody thought much about how to ride--they just did it. Enjoy!!
     
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    01-05-2012, 04:24 PM
  #22
Showing
One last piece of advice... don't be stiff. Learn to sit up without anything getting 2-by-4ish. Stretch up but keep supple yourself.. and your horse will in time learn to do the same.

Have fuuuunnn!!!! :)
     
    01-05-2012, 05:37 PM
  #23
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel    
So using this example here: Riding Technique: The Basics of Posting - YouTube The lower leg is steady and strong, but not stiff since it's letting the energy escape out of her foot. And her ankle isn't stiff either.. it's acting as a shock absorber. She isn't flexing her knee, her hip is leading the post and her knee gives/opens but it doesn't shift or compress.

So maybe I worded it too simply? But my trainer told me that your lower leg stays with the horse and when you post, you work on letting the horse lift your hips off of the saddle.. not pushing down in the stirrups and rising from your knee.

Rachelgem - you should have your lower leg softly against your horses sides all the time.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.
TBH her rising trot is not that good, her feet are flapping around with every stride - as you can see best in the slow motion. She sits heavily into the saddle with each step as well. Her hip angle is nice though as she is swinging her hips forward with each rise. Rising from your knees does not make your knee or leg stiff it keeps your lower leg completely still so it's not banging the horse with every stride.
     
    01-05-2012, 05:43 PM
  #24
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tnavas    
TBH her rising trot is not that good, her feet are flapping around with every stride - as you can see best in the slow motion. She sits heavily into the saddle with each step as well. Her hip angle is nice though as she is swinging her hips forward with each rise. Rising from your knees does not make your knee or leg stiff it keeps your lower leg completely still so it's not banging the horse with every stride.
It was to talk a friend through my explanation and find out if I was wrong or not. The example of a good post was demonstrated in tinyliny's animatronics' youtube video.

The OP wasn't told that video was a good example, but no one is perfect, we were all beginners at some point so it's a good starting spot if the OP chose to see it that way, though that wasn't its purpose on the thread.

Also she (the girl in the video) is not on critique here either..
     
    01-05-2012, 05:50 PM
  #25
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel    
So using this example here: Riding Technique: The Basics of Posting - YouTube The lower leg is steady and strong, but not stiff since it's letting the energy escape out of her foot. And her ankle isn't stiff either.. it's acting as a shock absorber. She isn't flexing her knee, her hip is leading the post and her knee gives/opens but it doesn't shift or compress.

So maybe I worded it too simply? But my trainer told me that your lower leg stays with the horse and when you post, you work on letting the horse lift your hips off of the saddle.. not pushing down in the stirrups and rising from your knee.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.
The lower leg is NOT steady - it is flapping around all the time. Yes you do allow the horse to push you out of the saddle but you control the movement of your body by opening and closing your knees and hips. What a lot of people do when rising to the trot is to push themselves up off their feet. This causes the foot to flick back and forward and with a novice rider the foot tends to stay forward so they lose their balance as they sit and end up behind the movement.

As regards to my comment on the video - if you post stuff to You Tube which is public then you leave yourself open to comments positive or negative.
     
    01-05-2012, 05:59 PM
  #26
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tnavas    
As regards to my comment on the video - if you post stuff to You Tube which is public then you leave yourself open to comments positive or negative.
Oh I definitely understand that :) just critiquing that girl on a thread where the OP is in the beginning steps herself.. it may confuse her or be a little bit too much to understand.

But I do see your point! Next time I'll link a rider with a steadier leg and a smoother post.

Though I'd like to add, a weak leg has trouble being steady. So it may not LOOK steady, but it could be as steady as the rider is able to do at that point.
     
    01-05-2012, 06:07 PM
  #27
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel    
Oh I definitely understand that :) just critiquing that girl on a thread where the OP is in the beginning steps herself.. it may confuse her or be a little bit too much to understand.

But I do see your point! Next time I'll link a rider with a steadier leg and a smoother post.

Though I'd like to add, a weak leg has trouble being steady. So it may not LOOK steady, but it could be as steady as the rider is able to do at that point.
If the rider is rising correctly then her leg will be steady. This can be easily taught to a novice rider so long as the instructor is observant and knows how to remedy the problem. I cringe when I am examining Pony Club riders at a local riding school when I see their instructor teaching trot so badly. The rider stands no chance of getting rising trot easily and well. If the instructor places the rider correctly and constantly checks and corrects the way the rider is rising then rising trot becomes easy.
     
    01-05-2012, 06:08 PM
  #28
Foal
I was taught that your lower leg should not touch the horses side at all
     
    01-05-2012, 06:15 PM
  #29
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelgem    
i was taught that your lower leg should not touch the horses side at all
The leg should be softly against the horses sides at all times otherwise when you use your legs you startle the horse.

The leg should be still except when you need to use it, but by being softly against the horse he can feel the change in pressure without being startled.

This is one of the problems with a forward moving horse and the rider saying I can't use my legs it makes him go even more silly. If the same horse is ridden by a rider who holds the horse softly with their leg the horse will eventually understand that the existance of the legs on his sides doesn't mean he has to go flat out but only when asked by an increase in pressure.
     
    01-05-2012, 06:19 PM
  #30
Foal
Hmmmm, I was taught that you keep your legs off, so when you do use them they feel it, and they don't become dead to the leg
     

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