Critique of walk/trot on Sammy

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Critique of walk/trot on Sammy

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    04-04-2011, 04:42 AM
Green Broke
Critique of walk/trot on Sammy

I finally got some pictures of me riding sammy at a walk and trot. I would like a critique on me and anything on sammy if you want. I know there is quite a bit of work to do, I have just started lessons again. My leg can be horrible I have problems with keeping it in place. Sorry if the pics arent good they were the best I could get. Thanks
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    04-04-2011, 05:04 AM
Green Broke
Just wanted to add he has a tendency to put his head up and braces against your hands when he trots. Also his bum is dirty just incase anyone is wondering.
    04-04-2011, 07:20 AM
Green Broke
Bump nothing??
    04-04-2011, 08:44 AM
Your elbows need to have about a ninety degree bend in them. Your hands are forward and on your horses mane, so I would pull them up and draw them back a little. I'm 99% sure you are riding English in this photo (it is early so I somehow can't tell all the way xD), and you sort of want to be able to feel contact with your horse. Move your hands with the horses head. Moving your hands should also help fix your body position, you're leaning a bit too far forward. Your heels look good most of the time, but you may want to work on pushing them just a touch more down.

Your leg position is a bit far forward. It looks like you are slouching and keeping your chin and sometimes your eyes down. Remember to look where you want to go. I don't know if you are looking for your diagonal in those pictures, but remember that you either have it or you don't and only look down for a quick beat. Sit up tall with a slight arch in your back.

You are looking pretty good so far, your general posture is pretty good you just need to fine-tune some things! Good luck!
    04-04-2011, 08:56 AM
Green Broke
Thanks yep I do ride english I just have a stock saddle. I do have a bad habit of slouching forward I catch myself doing it quite a bit. While I was riding I didn't actually realise I was looking down so much I have no idea why I was doing that. I'll remember that about my my hands also. I did get a picture where I was sitting up nice and straight but it was too dark so I didn't put it up.
    04-04-2011, 12:35 PM
You tend to ride in a chair position. It's not too bad in the second picture, in the rest of them your leg is too far forward. When you're in the correct english seat, you should be able to drawa a line from your ear through your shoulder, then through your hip to your heel. A good way to test this is to stand straight up in the saddle, then sit back down without moving your leg. It takes awhile to get used to, but your balance and center of gravity will be much better for it.

I couldn't see your hands in most of the pictures, but in the 3rd picture, they need some fixing! You need to close your fingers, with thumbs to the sky.

Does your horse pull on the bit? Your elbows look locked and they should be more to your side. Also your shoulders are hunched. A good exercise to fix both those things is to ride with a yardstick or a crop behind your back through your elbows.

Lastly, look up! You always want to look where you're going and constantly looking down will only confuse your horse.
    04-04-2011, 04:42 PM
I think you're off to a good start! :)

I'll start from head on downwards.

Look up! I promise you his head will not fall off! ;) Looking down is compromising your upper body position by tipping you forward. If you can look up this will greatly help you out. Next thing is to sit up tall and sit back just a touch. Looking up helps with this as well as lifting up your shoulders and rolling them back. You could use a bit more bend in your elbows. By having a nice bend in your elbows allows you to have some give in the reins when your horse decides to pull something and you won't lose your position. Remember to keep your fingers closed like in the last picture! Good job though on keeping your thumbs up on top. :)

It looks like you keep a decent leg position at the walk but when moving up in the gaits, you tend to get chair seated. This comes from either clenching too much or just doing nothing with your legs. Pull your leg back underneath you--when you look down you shouldn't see your toes--and get up into two point. Gently sit back down and concentrate on how that position feels. Wrap your legs around your horse and "hold" him but don't clench and get tense.

Some things I like is that you seem really relaxed! :) Staying relaxed helps you keep your balance and allows your body to follow your horse's movements. I also think your heel is great as well!
    04-04-2011, 05:12 PM
Green Broke
Thanks everyone I will have to keep this all in mind When I go for my next ride. Yes I feel I generally keep a good leg position at walk but as soon as I go up in the gaits I loose it.

Also yes kcscott85 he does pull on the bit. I've noticed since I got him he hates contact for him to be happy you would have to ride with just holding onto the buckel at the end of the reins. What he normally does when any contact is taken up is chuck his head up and brace against the bit. He has been doing this less and less lately though especially once he is warmed up.
    04-04-2011, 05:39 PM
Originally Posted by apachewhitesox    
Also yes kcscott85 he does pull on the bit. I've noticed since I got him he hates contact for him to be happy you would have to ride with just holding onto the buckel at the end of the reins. What he normally does when any contact is taken up is chuck his head up and brace against the bit. He has been doing this less and less lately though especially once he is warmed up.
My horse did this as well, it's so irritating! What I did to correct it was to use my forward driving leg aids. Each time he would pull the bit, I would squeeze him forward. After awhile, he began to associate pulling on the bit with having to work harder. Every once in awhile he'll take a dive on the bit but as soon as I apply those leg aids, he backs off for the rest of the ride.
    04-04-2011, 05:45 PM
Green Broke
Thanks for the idea I don't normally push him forward more. (especially lately) I normally ride for about half hour to an hour and I normally trot most of that. He has come to realise that rushing it and having no brakes just makes him tired but he still has to go. He is starting to be a little slower and better with stopping lately. I am also getting him fit again because he was out of work for 8 months before I got him.

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