Originally Posted by ~*~anebel~*~
I actually disagree with other critiquers.
Your reins are a good length. Your hands are in a good position. Your stirrups could be a hole shorter, but that is preference.
The thing that is inherent to me is you are leaning forward a great deal which is compromising your seat and unbalancing your horse.
Pictures 2, 3 6 and 7 I like because you are sitting in the saddle with your back and riding up to the contact. Your hands can come a bit together and actually be pressed a bit forward and down in some shots, and then riding more actively with your seat up to the contact to really get the roundness. Yout need to keep your hands closed on the reins (I see open fingers - if the horse gets fussy - ride more to the contact).
In the trot picture and what I assume is in a trot-canter transition you are leaning forward, have thrown away your contact and the horse is out of balance (see the expression on the horse).
Sit on your seat. Go sitting before the transition. Put your aid for a canter on, balance back, stretch your core, push your stomach to your hands and then ask for the canter. Then it will be in a balance and allow the horse a fair chance to get into a canter. And especially press your hands forward and together in the transition to allow the horse a chance to canter without getting pulled on.
Once you are sitting more consistently, yes your leg does have to be turned more forward, but that comes with a steady seat. How traditionally it is done, however, is to actually reach down and pull your thighs out behind you (move the flesh to the back of the saddle) and then focus on turning from the hip. However, this is for later. Right now the seat needs to become more solid.
Thank you for your insight.
I do agree, now looking at these photo's, that I lean forward, which is made apparent when looking at the horse, who in affected and unbalanced - something I will definaly take care to work on - if Im not balanced, how can I be expecting that he is or can be.
Open fingers is a big thing for me - I am constantly having to correct myself from this or 'pram pusher hands'. Seems my hands turn this way rather than that .... Hmmm too much HF typing? Hahaha.
Yep, that was a trot canter transition - it is my worst
, and I look horrible - but hey this isn't the place for 'pretty or prissy' pictures, I'm here to learn!
I will use those tips you gave me - I actually used the same ones in my lesson last night, and these along with some of the others which have been suggested, helped me feel more balanced and confident, therefore helping my horse also. If it helps me it helps him - and he sure lets me know, which is even better.
Thank you for your reply, it was very well explained.