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.A.j. 05-09-2008 02:58 PM

Flatwork Critique
Hey everyone,
It's the first time I've posted pictures of me riding Flynn. I'm very rusty and Flynn is green so I'm looking for advice.
Don't be afraid to "rip" me apart.
I just noticed how straight my arms are :|

Thanks in advance.

amightytarzan5 05-09-2008 04:04 PM

Okay, I don't see a whole lot wrong, but I do see a few things.

1. Push your heel down more and then your toe should be in a better position. Your toe needs to be out a little bit more, but not much. If you can push your heel down without moving your toe, it would be even better.

2. Yeah, your arms are very straight. It doesn't allow to absorb the horse's motion.

3. Also, when you post, squeeze with your calves more instead of posting off of your stirrups. It gets a better look and it helps you keep your heel down.

You look pretty good, you just have a few things to work on!

mudypony 05-09-2008 04:10 PM

Here's what I see but I'm by no means good at critiquing.

- Definately need to bend your elbows.
- It probably wouldn't hurt to shorten your reins a tad (this would probably help but a bend in your elbows too)
- Your leg looks pretty good excempt in the first pic your leg looks awkward or something, I'm not really sure.
- Also in all the pics you are sitting nice and straight and are always looking at where you're going.
- The last thing I noticed is it looks like your horse could be asked to do more like engage his hind end and have a more powerful trot. (sorry if I'm not explaining this very well)

Keep up the good work.

PoptartShop 05-09-2008 04:21 PM

13 Attachment(s)
-Relax your arms.
-Your legs look okay, although having them back a little bit more would help. :D & keep the heels down.

To help relax your legs, wiggling your toes should work. :)

All-in-all, you look pretty good!! :D Flynn is so cute!

Just Jump It 05-09-2008 04:44 PM

You have a very cute horse!

You look like you are a bit on the stiff side, and this is reflected in your horse; he is stiff through the neck, back, and mouth.

You're ankles are down in one picture, up in the others. it seems to be moving around quite a bit. Concentrate on keeping that lower leg still and resist the temptation to let your grip sneek into your knee. The flex stirrups that you are using give many riders alot of trouble. It tends to make you stiff in the ankles. Traditional heavy irons are best whan you are trying to keep you heels down and lower leg still.

In the first picture you are over posting and have pushed up off of your toe.

I think your biggest position flaw (and its not even that big :wink: ) is your extremely stiff upper body. Your arms, wrists and shoulder are all locked. Your back is also very flat but very stiff which means that your hips and seat are prone to stiffness too. This has cused a chain reaction throughout your entire body resulting in a tense horse.

Your arms and wrists must be soft and forgiving. Relax your shoulders. Roll them a couple times when you are riding. Keep those thumbs up for a straight contact to your horses mouth. Make your reins a little longer and let up off his mouth. As your reins are now he has no way to flex at the poll and bring his back up to you.

Remember, outside rein supportive, inside rein encourages flexion. If your inside rein is not soft he will lean on it and hang on your hands. He must learn to carry himself and you have to encourage him to do that by being soft and inviting with your hands and seat.

You two make a very nice pair!

.A.j. 05-09-2008 06:48 PM

Thanks everyone,
MudyPony: I understand what you mean by "engaging" we have been starting to work on getting him to work from behind as he is very much a typical QH (on the forehand). Thanks!

Poptart: coach is always telling me to wiggle my toes :)

Thanks Just Jump It. I've always been really tense, I'm gonna focus on loosening up a bit. Thanks for all the insight :)

Keep the advice coming!!!

Abby 05-09-2008 07:49 PM


Originally Posted by Just Jump It
In the first picture you are over posting and have pushed up off of your toe.

I agree. I noticed that right away in the fist picture, you are almost standing completely up, you should be a two-point position, with more bend in your knee, basically when you rise, you should push your hips forward, versus actually rising up.

my2geldings 05-10-2008 01:08 AM

The 2 main things I noticed is your arms that need to relax and bend at the elbow, and your lower leg. It looks like you are pinching with your knee. You need to try to keep more contact with your lower leg.

A fun exercise if your horse is ok with it is to put some toilet paper between your horse and lower leg. The second you dont keep that lower leg on, it will fall down to the ground :D

Have you had a trainer to work with?

Glad to see you wear a helmet.

.A.j. 05-10-2008 06:52 AM


Originally Posted by My2Geldings

Glad to see you wear a helmet.


And yes I do have a trainer, at least one lesson a week, almost always on my horse.

Thanks for the advice, I think I will try the toilet paper game, my horse is pretty easy-going.

love-a-hero 05-10-2008 07:17 AM

1. Elbows
2. Thumbs on top
3. Toes in
4. Push your horse forward with your lower leg
5. Invite him into the bridle
6. Your lower leg looks unsteady in some photoes

Vety nice looking horse. Should go along way with some training :wink:

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