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This is a discussion on Balance within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

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    01-30-2008, 03:07 PM

My balance is HORRID. I can only trot a few steps bareback without falling off, not to mention my horse's trot is wicked.

When I ride my horse I feel like I'm trying to balance on a ball that is way to slippery. I'm completely a saddle cripple.

I can't ride a unicycle so I need to learn balance a different way. Help please?

Someone told me yoga would help, is that true?
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    01-30-2008, 03:23 PM
Yoga probably does help (not sure because I started yoga long after I started riding). Aside from balance, it definitely helps with overall body/muscle control and flexibility that you need for riding.

As for what else you can do...I dunno. Anything that requires side-to-side balance (moreso than front-to-back). Bicycling is probably the closest. Skiing too, I guess.

Ed. I will say, from your description, it sounds more like a tension issue than a balance issue.
    01-30-2008, 04:00 PM
What do you mean tension?
    01-30-2008, 04:24 PM
If you are getting bounced off at the trot, it usually means your body is tense and resisting the motion instead of going with it.

This can either be mental or physical: if a person is at some level unsure of their balance, they will be more tense.

Also, if you are not particularly flexible through the hips, it is physically much harder to follow the movement (especially if the horse has a big stride).

Yoga is excellent exercise for the latter, and I would suggest more time riding for the former: especially lunge lessons.
    01-30-2008, 10:27 PM
Ha ha, as dumb as this may sound, my friends and I use to play "barrel bull riding" and it really tests your grip. You take a barrel, such as a barrel for barrel racing, and you put in on a trampoline and you get on and ride it, and have people bounce you while your on the "bull" and don't hold on and try to stay on.
    01-30-2008, 11:17 PM
Green Broke
My friends and I sort of did the same thing. We had a metal oil barrel and attached it to springs and hung it in the air. You'd get on and it was like going for a bronc ride. We eventually had to put a rope to hold on to because metal oil barrels are very slick! Another fun thing we did for balance was grabbing two, two by fours and putting one on the other to make a + shape and then put one foot on one side and the other on the other side to make it like a see-saw. There's also a really expensive thing you can get that perfessional horsemen who do cutting use to improve their balance.
    02-01-2008, 03:45 PM
If I grab a chunk of mane I feel way comfortable and stay better seated except when he starts trotting like a crazy horse and I feel like I'm riding a jackhammer. The only problem is, if I hold his mane he doesn't neck rein so I can only turn him one direction lol

I think I am tense because the last time I rode bareback I took a nasty fall at the trot and ever since I've feel like I need to hang on for dear life.
    02-01-2008, 03:56 PM
It seems lunge lessons would be the best solution for you, in my opinion. Would allow you to focus on your seat instead of controlling the horse at this point.
    02-01-2008, 04:11 PM
Thanks for the advice. :)
    02-01-2008, 06:38 PM
I agree, lunge lessons could help and riding in the saddle with no stirrups :) and, relax!!!!!!!

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