Hunter/Eq flat critique *pics* - Page 2

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Hunter/Eq flat critique *pics*

This is a discussion on Hunter/Eq flat critique *pics* within the Hunters and Hunter Seat Equitation forums, part of the English Riding category
  • Horse riding how to put weight into your elbows
  • Proper hand position in english eq

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    06-18-2012, 11:17 PM
Originally Posted by tinyliny    
Could you point out which picture you think her hands don't make sense? I am curious. The only thing I see there is at times the elbow comes away from the body, so if one looked at her from above, they would see a broken line to the bit, where the elbow stuck out.
Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel    
I won't go into depth because this isn't my area but you need to make sure your reins and arms make sense. In some of these, your arm is too low or too high so it isn't really working for you.. just creating resistance in your horse.

Your overall position is pretty good. But sort out your contact. She looks a little stiff in the "hunt coat" pictures too. In the others when your arms make sense (as in follow the bit, using your body correctly) she seems very happy and put together.
It's the arms.

Will go through each photo and give a quick opinion on the arms. ****please keep in mind I know more about dressage position and way of riding than the hunt/forward seat position and way of riding****

But since you asked, tinyliny. Here goes. (I wrote these mini critiques backwards so if you get confused read from the bottom up to see my train of thought lol)

In the first picture, her hands are lined up to follow the horse, without jabbing, at the trot. Only thing is it looks like her hands are kind of frozen on the horse's neck in position and slack instead of keeping contact so she'd have to give a little bit at her elbows to avoid jabbing the horse in the mouth and if she was doing so with contact, give a little bit more at her elbows so avoid jabbing the horse. But she knows what she's doing

In picture 2, the horse looks tense and stiff and that head is up and I see some signs of bracing. Her hands are low, and not in a position to follow the horse without jabbing (which may be why the horse's head is up in the first place, but this is again speculation and she'd have to do what I suggested below at a bare minimum to encourage the horse to relax and come down)

In picture 3, again notice how the horse's head is slightly more up and her hands are still down, not really in a position to follow the horse AS WELL and she may end up jabbing the horse in the mouth (may be why the horse's head isn't as relaxed as the pictures after this one.. this is speculation) so she would need to push her horse more forward and bring her hands up to encourage the horse to relax and come down again (paired with other things that I will not dive into)

In picture 4, her hands are lined up with contact to follow the horse (walk I'm guessing? Still haven't nailed the ability to tell which gait the horse is in without the tell tale poses)

In picture 5, her hands are are lined up on a slack rein and in position to follow the horse's movement at the trot so she doesn't end up jabbing the horse in the mouth.

The last picture her arms are working correctly with the horse. They aren't bracing, they aren't pulling up or down, they're moving at the same level and not impeding the horse. She can use her entire elbow to follow the horse's canter movement without jabbing the horse in the mouth.

Does that help?
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    06-19-2012, 10:18 PM
Sky- I'm not sure if that helped tinyliny, but it helped me! Sometimes just hearing things I can already see a bit myself help me correct them. I worked on my hand position today and I think I made at least a little dent in the issue. Thanks again :)

If you're curious, here's a jumping picture from my show a couple days ago. I quite like the picture, and I know the photographer, so I think I might buy the picture. I might get her to photoshop Roxy's ears forward though, haha. Photo :: 2012 06-16 BMS 0114

ETA: Tinyliny- I see what you mean about the elbow thing. My trainer has been having me occasionally pop my elbows out because I have a tendency of locking my arms against my side and losing the flexibility between my shoulder, elbow, and wrist. For whatever reason, if I open up my elbow for a few strides I stop tensing so much and can maintain a better, softer contact with the horse's mouth.
    06-20-2012, 03:19 AM
I'm glad :)!!
    06-25-2012, 07:38 AM
Sorry I haven't read through all the other critiques, this will be a "hit and run" -

I think your lower leg and heel look fine - I don't see a chair seat, though I agree the saddle is too big in the seat and that you probably have to fight to stay in the correct place. Sitrrup placement, angled across the ball of your foot is good as well.

I agree that you are inclining your body too far forward in the trot. I haven't seen a video of you, but this bad habit usually closes the rider's hip and makes them work too hard when they post. Work on posting with your hip, and think of the motion as forward and back, rather than up and down. Your shoulders and torso do not have a job in the posting trot, leave them at home and let your hip do the work.

In the second and third photos, you have a slight roach in your upper back/shoulders dropped forward. I'm guessing it was a long show day and you were getting tired, but it's something you need to be conscious of. In other photos you have a hollow in your lower back, which tends to push your seat bones behind you. You want your back to be as flat as possible, while being relaxed and sitting tall, if that makes sense.

The fourth photos shows the best hand and arm position, and the best contact. In all of the others, you're carrying your hand and arm a little too forward, with insufficient weight in your elbows and I suspect your horse doesn't like working on contact and this is sort of a compromise you've worked out. Look at the fourth photo and compare it to the others - you want to look consistently like that fourth photo. You will be penalized in a eq class for not working on contact.

The first two point photo is good, the second one shows you standing up and over the pommel, rather than bending your hip and staying over the middle of the saddle.

Overall, the impression is of a soft, capable rider who's sympathetic to the horse. With a few tweaks to make you more effective, I think your equitation could really shine.
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    06-25-2012, 09:01 AM
Thank you maura. The contact thing has been an issue for us. My trainer says that both me and Roxy prefer having a strong contact, but that puts us both in a weird position and it's not really acceptable in the hunter world. She's been having me practice having no contact with her mouth to get her out of my hands, then picking up a light contact again. I'm still having some trouble with it though. I'll keep working on it! My two point also needs some work... I think I'll start adding some more two point and no stirrup work into my rides and see if that helps.
Again, thanks so much for your thorough critique! :)
    06-26-2012, 11:43 PM
I think you look really nice! But you do lean forward a little.
    06-27-2012, 12:02 PM
Thanks! I had a great lesson yesterday, and my trainer had me really work on my posture and contact. I was on a different horse (this big 17.2h WB gelding, who's fantastic, but takes SO much leg! He'll be my eq horse for the rest of the season though :) ) but when I got home I rode Roxy and still managed to carry everything through, so I think I'm improving!
    06-27-2012, 02:53 PM
Just to ad, hunter forward seat is only a couple of degrees forward. You look more like your leaning than slightly in front. Unless you are in a hand gallop bring your shoulders way back. A lot of people think " lean forward in hunters" .... No... Not really. Lol. If you think of keeping your shoulders back your saddle and the horses movement will put you into the position naturally
    06-27-2012, 06:09 PM
For whatever reason, I really like how you put that. That makes perfect sense. I'll try that tomorrow when I ride. Thanks!

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