Riding Basics, What to do when you first get on.

Do you have a mental checklist for before you start your ride? Or are you a ride by the seat of your pants person!? Implementing a quick routine at the start of your ride is a really good practice and a great habit to adopt! It’s like a little systems check to make sure you’re mentally engaged, sitting correctly in the saddle, and moving with your horse! But what should you do to do this? 

This week’s video gives you a short but effective list of exercises to make sure you’re starting your ride RIGHT!

1. Check in with your seat and pelvis. – Is your saddle straight, are your seat bones in the right position. They should feel like they are pointing straight downwards!

2. Start walking, feel the motion, and BREATHE! – We want to feel that our seat is absorbing the motion of the horse’s walk. Allow your pelvis and spine to feel loose in order to go with this motion. Breath all the way through this, we have a tendency to hold our breath sometimes on horseback and breathing irregularly but breathing consciously will slow our heart rate, calming us and reassuring our horses!

3. Drop your stirrups! – This places more weight on your seat bones. Let your legs hang down and encourage as much length as possible. Do some exercises like ankle circles and toe-pointing up and down.

4.  Take the two-point! – Take your stirrups back take them up a hole if necessary and get into two-point position. Balance with your seat out of the saddle, lean forward slightly and let the weight sink into your heels. You can hold your horse’s mane or neck strap if necessary, but try and balance without to improve your balance and stability.

5. Sit up tall. – Consciously sit up tall, open your shoulders and collarbones. Bring your elbows to your side. This is very important if your horse gets strong, we need to sit up, and back and keep the shoulders open. 

Try these tips on your horse and let me know in the comments if you find them helpful! Also, let me know if you have any other post-mounting rituals that work for you!

Thanks for watching and happy riding!

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It’s really important whenever you are riding that you have a plan and that you are giving your horse clear direction. You are the leader and getting control of where your horse is going…
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