After a brake - critique riding and jumping
Hey! I had been riding for about 1,5 years for now.
Due to some personal issues, I stopped riding for ~5 months, then went to 2 lessons and didn't ride again for ~3 mths.
I started attending lessons again a week ago and had some photos taken. What do you think, is my position getting awkward? :D And how to correct my mistakes.
By the way, this mare is VERY rushing and nervous. How could I make her slow down and calm her?
I'm waiting for your comments. ;)
I'm not amazing at critiques but I'll give it a bash :)
You seem a lot more relaxed in the older photos, which is understandable if you've had some time off and the mare rushes. If you relax more it may help stop the mare from rushing - you seem to be hanging onto her in the second to last picture, try slowing her more with your seat and rhythm - imagine the speed you want to go at, and try and slow your rises to match that and it should help slow her.
Your stirrups are right on your toes in the recent pictures as well, which can force your heels down - move them slightly backwards onto the ball of your foot. I would also drop the stirrups down one hole for the flat work, you seem a little perched on top of her, and it may help your stirrup iron position.
To relax her - remember to breathe! You seem a little on the defensive in the pictures, as if you are waiting for her to rush - keep your shoulder back and your chin up, relax your shoulders down and make sure you don't fuss too much with your hands.
I won't critique the jump, as it is not really my area - hope that helps!
As far as the jumping picture, try to work on securing your leg. When going over the jump, sink your weight downt hrough your leg and use your chest muscles to hold yourself up. It looks as if you're just collapsing on the horse which pushes your leg back.
I agree that you look very tense in the other present day pictures. Try to keep your mare's mind working at all times. If she's rushing, she doesn't have something to focus on. Do smaller circles, switch up your patterns, transitions. Remember, hard hands makes for a hard mouth. Soften your grip and keep her mind working
Thank you very much!:)
Next time, I'll make sure to drop the stirrups a bit, maybe then I'll feel more secure...
About 'fussing with my hands'... Yeah... That's my problem, I try to slow the mare with my hands and by sitting deeper into the saddle, but that doesn't seem to help...
Yes... I don't only look, but I really feel tense.
Aaaand... I'll try my best to soften my grip. Maybe this will help. :)
Oh, and how about the mare? Does she look anything close to collected? :D
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