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Please Critique My Riding

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        04-25-2012, 05:13 PM
      #1
    Foal
    Please Critique My Riding

    Below are pictures of me riding my borrowed 6yr old Quarter Horse mare, Dixie.

    Here's a little back story:
    I grew up riding western and only started riding in an English saddle last summer. English was my favorite when I was younger though so I would try to copy the form while riding in a western saddle.
    I have never had any schooling in English so all I know has been learned from reading books, watching videos, going to clinics, and just doing what felt natural.

    I'm sure I can improve in a lot of ways but since everyone that I ride with only rides western, I have nobody to show me what I'm doing wrong.

    So, what do you guys think? What can I improve on? What should I do differently? I know it's kind of hard to tell from pictures but I don't have any videos of me riding (yet).
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        04-25-2012, 05:31 PM
      #2
    Super Moderator
    Hi there. It must be very hard to try and learn solely from reading and watching videos. I would be really fun for you to take some lessons. I think you'd learn in one lesson twice what you can learn in a week of watching videos.

    Ok, so for the critique. Your legs are much too far foward, in a chair seat. The stirrup is too long. You need to shorten the stirrup one or maybe even two nothches. Yeah, two. Get your feet back under you, not if front. If you horse were to magically disappear from under you , you want to be positioned such that you will land softly on your own two feet. Here you would land on your tailbone!

    This kind of position makes it hard for you to be in motion with your horse as it posts. You will always be "behind" the motion and will end up pulling on the reins to keep your balance.

    Try riding this little horse around a small arena or paddock with almost no rein (ride on the buckle) at a walk at first. Get yourself lined up and try to rise up and down and have no help with the reins. Just your real balance. You will need those feet under you, not out in front.

    Your horse is throwing up its' head and hollwoing out its back due to your way of posting might be bringing you down too hard on his back. Or, it could be the saddle fit is not good , or a combo of both.

    Can you post pics of the saddle on the horse where you normally put it, no pad? Side , angled, and front /back views.
    csimkunas6 likes this.
         
        04-25-2012, 05:38 PM
      #3
    Started
    Good for you for looking to learn! :)

    One of the first things I notice in the pictures is that you are in a bit of a chair seat and your feet are quite far into the stirrup (instead of having the stirrup bar along the ball of your foot from the inside ball to the pinky toe on the outside - if that makes sense). Shortening your stirrups a bit may help with this as well. Bring your heel back underneath you some so that you have a better base of support.

    I think this is a good place to start. I know for myself it's easier to work on one thing at a time instead of twenty billion things at once. Once your leg/seat is more stable other things will fall into place - like the contact with your horses mouth, etc.

    What has this horse had training wise?
    tinyliny likes this.
         
        04-25-2012, 06:08 PM
      #4
    Foal
    Quote:
    One of the first things I notice in the pictures is that you are in a bit of a chair seat and your feet are quite far into the stirrup
    Yes, now that you guys have both mentioned this, I think it's because of my stirrups being too low. I start out with my feet being in the correct position in the stirrup but I find that they slip forward as I ride and I have to keep repositioning them.

    As far as her training, the lady who owns her just got her sometime in the spring of 2011 and she didn't do much with her. She had a young trainer come out and ride her a couple of times and then when summer came, I started riding her.
    She was supposed to be my friend's new barrel horse and I was riding her through the summer (my friend prefers to let me deal with the young, lively horses.), but my friend got a new barrel horse so she's mine to ride for the summer again.
    So all of that to say, I don't really know what training she had before she came to my friend's barn.
    She has a LOT of fire and energy...sometimes I can't remember if I'm riding a QH or an Arabian. Lol She's also very herd bound (which I have been working on with her) which, all of that, is the reason why I have her on such a tight rein. Plus, this was only the 3rd ride I've had on her this spring so we're still working through spring jitters. ;)
         
        04-25-2012, 06:18 PM
      #5
    Weanling
    Hi there! I get the "teaching yourself" concept. If you can afford a couple of lessons a month (more is better but I am trying to go cheap here), you would have someone that can help you immediately with your position and can remind you where to put your legs, etc. Hands on is the way to go. I watch videos, read, read, read and also take lessons with a fabulous trainer. The lessons give me a chance to get feedback on what I have learned and I also get new ideas and can "feel" when it is wrong and when it is right because she tells me immediately if the movement is good or bad.

    In addition to the things listed by the others, I see you leaning forward a lot. Try to get your heel, hip, shoulder and ear in a line. It helps to balance you. It is hard to do at first and feels uncomfortable, but once you get the hang of it, it comes naturally and really helps. Most of the time you are looking where you are going which is GREAT!
         
        04-25-2012, 06:19 PM
      #6
    Super Moderator
    Your foot would go too deep into the stirrup if you are pushing forward too much., I can imagein it's hard to make any changes if the horse is being firey and upset and flinging itself around.

    Maybe ride her good and hard in your western saddle first to tire her out a bit.
    Also, am really curious about that saddle fit.
         
        04-25-2012, 06:22 PM
      #7
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DressageDreamer    
    Hi there! I get the "teaching yourself" concept. If you can afford a couple of lessons a month (more is better but I am trying to go cheap here), you would have someone that can help you immediately with your position and can remind you where to put your legs, etc. Hands on is the way to go. I watch videos, read, read, read and also take lessons with a fabulous trainer. The lessons give me a chance to get feedback on what I have learned and I also get new ideas and can "feel" when it is wrong and when it is right because she tells me immediately if the movement is good or bad.

    In addition to the things listed by the others, I see you leaning forward a lot. Try to get your heel, hip, shoulder and ear in a line. It helps to balance you. It is hard to do at first and feels uncomfortable, but once you get the hang of it, it comes naturally and really helps. Most of the time you are looking where you are going which is GREAT!
    very well said! The leaning forward thing can be a part of having a chair seat. Once your legs go forward, in order for you to go up in a posting action, you have to lean forward to counter balance the forward legs, it's simple physics.
         
        04-25-2012, 06:24 PM
      #8
    Foal
    Quote:
    Your horse is throwing up its' head and hollwoing out its back due to your way of posting might be bringing you down too hard on his back.
    Maybe I'm not reading correctly but I don't think I'm posting in any of these pictures...unless we both have a different definition of posting. I'm not trying to post at a canter, I'm trying to copy the form of someone hand galloping in a 2 point position...I'm just doing a really crappy job of it. Lol :P
         
        04-25-2012, 06:28 PM
      #9
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ArabianChic    
    Maybe I'm not reading correctly but I don't think I'm posting in any of these pictures...unless we both have a different definition of posting. I'm not trying to post at a canter, I'm trying to copy the form of someone hand galloping in a 2 point position...I'm just doing a really crappy job of it. Lol :P
    Need to shorten your irons for 2 point. You crack me up
         
        04-25-2012, 06:31 PM
      #10
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ArabianChic    
    Maybe I'm not reading correctly but I don't think I'm posting in any of these pictures...unless we both have a different definition of posting. I'm not trying to post at a canter, I'm trying to copy the form of someone hand galloping in a 2 point position...I'm just doing a really crappy job of it. Lol :P

    \my bad. You arent' in a trot in any of those. Sorry. I was looking so much at you not paying attention to horse.
         

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