I can't sit a lope! - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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I can't sit a lope!

I've been working on sitting the saddle and I can decently sit a trot which my trainer says can be a difficult thing to accomplish, but I'm all over the place when I'm loping. My trainer says it's because I tighten up. I love to love but I think the subconscious fight or flight thing kicks in and I stiffen. Any tips on how to loosen up?

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post #2 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 08:16 PM
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Breathe.

I know it may sound silly, but when I find myself tightening up, I check to make sure I'm taking nice deep breaths. You can't tighten up and brace if you're breathing deeply. Well, you can, but it's ridiculously difficult and your body doesn't like to fight itself like that.
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post #3 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 08:33 PM
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SING, then you have to breathe, truly it is the breakthrough that got me sitting and actually riding the lope. Nursery rhymes work really well.
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post #4 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 08:33 PM
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What helped me after my car accident and hurting my back was to exaggerate the sliding motion. Now I can sit the majority of everything (except my mare's trot..lol). I "scooch" my hips with her motion and I stay in the saddle just fine. The only time I really pop out is if she cross-fires, in which I usually fix it and settle right back in. Leaning back slightly also helps, but depending on how much you use that, it might take a bit to fix, which is just as hard as learning to sit the lope in the first place, haha.
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post #5 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 08:55 PM
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Agree with Golden Horse. My trainer used to torture me by making me sing cheesy pop songs while I was sitting the canter and it really does help loosen you up, no matter how stupid it might seem! After a while the breathing and relaxing just comes naturally.
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post #6 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 09:09 PM
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I read something on here once that said to visualize that you are glued to your saddle. Out of everything that has helped me the most. When I feel myself being tense or off balance I mentally think about me being glued to the saddle and how I would "stick" if that were the case. It's helped a lot, but I am far from perfect. I also need a larger saddle to accommodate my extra large rear end. But we're just not going there yet.
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post #7 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinaev View Post
I also need a larger saddle to accommodate my extra large rear end. But we're just not going there yet.
It's a good point though, if your saddle is way to big or small it makes sitting properly very difficult
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post #8 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 10:12 PM
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Breathe...deeper.
Rhythm...have it in your head before you lope...one, two, one two. Then stick with it and even say it out loud.
Hips...relax those hip muscles. Sit tall and deep using core muscles but allow your hips to swing into the rocking horse motion of the lope.
Smile...cause you are riding a horse =P
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post #9 of 34 Old 08-02-2014, 10:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WildAtHeart View Post
Breathe...deeper.
Rhythm...have it in your head before you lope...one, two, one two. Then stick with it and even say it out loud.
Surely for a lope it is one - two - three?
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post #10 of 34 Old 08-03-2014, 12:12 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips! I'll try the deep breathing thing and when it is just me and Barbie I'll try the singing ( if I do it when I'm with other people, I might damage their ears lol)
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