Originally Posted by JustDressageIt
I've edited my response to add more.
I do agree, Sky, that its in your head - but I disagree that you want to be loosey goosey. You want to be giving in the right joints, but you also have to keep other muscles very firm and working, such as your core. You do need to work every stride, not be a bowl of jello for most of the ride.
I've slipped into some horrible habits recently and have gotten my ass kicked for doing so. It's a steep learning curve!!
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I guess my definition of loosey goosey is going back to staying with the horse. Being jello would not accomplish that, but clamping down doesn't either. It's a fine mix of relaxing but also making sure that you aren't being thrown around regardless if you're posting, cantering, sitting the trot, etc.
But yeah, very steep learning curve if you aren't used to RIDING every step of the way, haha!