Home Exercise Routine! Any assistance appreciated! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 08-07-2014, 11:50 PM Thread Starter
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Home Exercise Routine! Any assistance appreciated!

Hello!

I'm not-so-new to the world of horses but I am new to the scene of riding. Up until now my training has been broken and messed up (Partially because of a mix of inexperienced instructors who said they were experienced and trainers moving away etc.) but now that I've finally found a trainer who is great I want to put everything I have into it. She heavily suggested that I start doing some home exercise routines which will improve my riding significantly and help me achieve my riding goals.

I was wondering if anyone could or would be willing to help me figure out a good exercise routine to work out all the proper muscles for horseback riding. I'm willing to put forth as much time each week as possible and google searches have no yielded very much information on the subject. (Most of the time it ends up being exercises for the horse, not the rider T.T)

I don't know much but any help would be much appreciated!

Thanks!
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post #2 of 13 Old 08-08-2014, 11:20 AM
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Anything that will improve your cardio fitness and your core are important. Strength training must be done along with cardio to truly get a well rounded workout. Maybe get some DVD's on pilates, zumba, yoga etc
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post #3 of 13 Old 08-08-2014, 12:33 PM
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My suggestion is to work on exercises that will improve your balance and suppleness. These are key to good riding and will help relieve tension in the rider. This, in turn, helps relieve tension in the horse.

Specific exercise preferences vary from individual to individual. Many riders look to Tai Chi or Yoga for ideas. Really, any balance and stretching exercises can be helpful.

Simply being conscious of your posture throughout the day can be one of the most useful things you can do to help your riding. Many of the problems I see riders having stem from poor posture. Good posture requires less work than bad posture. Good posture depends on balance wherein the individual's bones support the weight of their body rather than having to depend on their muscles for support. As a result, the muscles can relax unless called upon for specific reasons. When needed, the muscles can react more quickly and complete their task with less effort.
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post #4 of 13 Old 08-08-2014, 01:36 PM
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I'm unsure whether, when you say home, you mean home exclusively, or if you maybe have access to a gym. If it's the latter, Spin Class can be very beneficial (:
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post #5 of 13 Old 08-08-2014, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the great advice Ellen and TX!

@Zexious I do have access to a gym and never thought about giving spin class a try. I will certainly look into it :)
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post #6 of 13 Old 08-14-2014, 12:23 AM
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Stretching can also be very beneficial to your riding! I do the stirrup stretch (I think It has a proper name, but that's just what I call it) every time I go up/down my stairs at home.
It really helps me keep my calf muscles flexible, and helps me keep your heels down while you are riding by mimicking the position your lower leg would be in while riding on a horse.
You just stand on the edge of a stair on the balls of your feet, with your heels hanging off. Press your heels down as far as you can, and feel the stretch!!
**if you're feeling extra strong, try doing this stretch one foot at a time, or even try stretching your heels down, lifting them up, stretching them down, lifting up, etc., balancing on the balls of your feet!

Also anything that helps with your abs is great to use for horseback riding exercise.
And most of all, RIDE!!! You can't get the full-body workout that riding would give by doing anything else other than actually riding ��
-IH
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post #7 of 13 Old 08-14-2014, 01:02 AM
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Buy a beach ball, you will LOVE this exercise.

Sit in an upright chair so that your thighs are parallel to the ground. Put a beachball between your legs, about half between your knees, half between your thighs. Straighten your back, and squeeze your legs together as hard as you can for 5 seconds. Wait 10 seconds between each 5-second squeeze. I started with doing 20 of those squeezes on the first day, then added 1 second to each squeeze every day.

You will seriously get some awesome grip on the saddle after a couple of weeks!

Also, I'm not sure if you're a beginner, but if you're getting back in the saddle after a while, I think you'll immediately recognize that post-dismount pain between your thighs that makes you waddle like a penguin....the beachball will help loads, and at the same time will keep you one step ahead, especially if you're asked to post without stirrups or ride bareback. Keeping a strong core and seat is super important!


Edit:
Also, squats. They help with just general thigh and calf muscle development. To work on keeping your arms and back in place, you can try tricep dips. This is what they look like http://www.womenshealthmag.com/files.../TricepDip.jpg

Also, tri dips are really fun because you can do a ton of them and not really get tired easily...maybe that's just me, but I always end up doing them at work when I'm on break!
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post #8 of 13 Old 08-14-2014, 08:58 AM
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There are so, so many good exercise programs with video for home use, it's almost hard to pick.

But... One that many people I know have use to success is the simple exercises Jack LaLane taught. He uses things you can find in most houses.

Personally, when I'm preparing some one to go home, I recommend using things like cans of soup, brooms, and chairs or counters for their exercise equipment. And, if we're honest, many people find exercise very boring, so having it so you can read or watch TV while doing some really seems to help.

The only thing I really like that I haven't figured out a way to do while being entertained is "bridging." Love that one for my back/abs/hips/upper legs.
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post #9 of 13 Old 08-14-2014, 09:12 AM
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If your trainer is any good, s/he should be able to give you specifics.
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post #10 of 13 Old 08-14-2014, 05:49 PM
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For me, Yoga and Pilates work. I bought videos! Specifically I looked for ones that didn't require any equipment.

When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk: he trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes. ~ William Shakespeare
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