How to Create the Perfect Riding Horse


Think about how this combination feels in your body as you ride. Relaxation makes it easier to set rhythm, and rhythm makes it easier to relax. On the flip side, tension in either horse or rider disrupts rhythm. Our responsibility as riders and trainers is to learn to lead this dance rather than merely following along with whatever the horse offers. In the beginning, riders start out on reliable, goldie oldie school horses that offer a predictable ride so the rider can relax as she learns to balance over the horse's center of gravity, apply aids, and eventually coordinate those aids into horse-logical corridors of pressure using an independent seat.

Leading the dance means that a relaxed rider with an independent seat can set the working rhythm for any horse, young or old, green or grand prix, mellow or nervous. And that rhythm helps create relaxation in the horse and there we are at the best starting point for everything else we do with the horse. Even though rhythm and relaxation are a bit of a chicken and egg conundrum, rhythm is at the base of the training tree because that is our point of entry as leaders in the partnership with our horse.

Working from the ground, our rhythmic movement sets the patterns and feelings of shapes that become familiar to the horse.

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This familiarity helps the horse relax. He knows what to expect. When we ask a green horse for these familiar patterns and shapes under saddle for the first time, their familiarity helps the horse assimilate the new feeling of someone on his back. Later on in his training, as we begin asking the horse to push from his hindquarters with greater energy into our guiding hand, rhythmic patterning helps him work with elastic, 'relaxed', muscular tension rather than with tight, bunchy muscles.

Simple daily routines on the ground are the start of a rhythmic relationship with your horse. Greet your horse, halter him, and groom him following the same routine each day. Become aware of working with your horse rhythmically as you speak, breathe, touch and move around him. Type A personalities find this very difficult and must train themselves to become rhythmic. Rhythmic movement makes you a predictable presence and, as your horse finds he can depend on you as that predictable presence, he will find it relaxing to be around you.

Then you can carry that rhythmic, relaxed rapport over to your work under saddle. The more nervous or reactive your horse, the more important it is to build this relationship through groundwork before you saddle up and ride. Continue using routine, especially with a young or nervous horse, when you start working him under saddle. Move the horse from the stall to the arena in a consistent way.

Take him for a walk around the arena each time to check things out, paying full attention to your horse, and setting a rhythm as you walk, turn, check your girth and mount. Once in the saddle, make it part of your routine to check your position. You set the rhythm of the ride with your seat. Until you achieve a truly independent seat, you need to check your position at the beginning of every ride and several times during the ride to make sure your position makes it possible to communicate the rhythm you want to the horse. If you are slouching in a chair seat with your leg out in front of your seat bones a bit, you will fall behind the horse's motion, encourage him to scoot or run, and interrupt his rhythm.

If you are collapsed in your mid-section or tilting your head and shoulders forward, you will be ahead of his motion, blocking good rhythm. With your upper body centered over the horse's center of gravity and firm core muscles, check whether your back, buttock and thigh muscles are completely relaxed so they can follow the horse's motion easily or whether they are holding any tension that will interrupt a rhythmic seat that moves with the horse.

Besides sitting in the correct position, riders need to have a full range of hip motion in order to set rhythm with their seat. If there is no response, kick, then tap him with a whip. Make sure he canters on the right leg. Try to understand your horse.

From the Ground

Whatever type of riding you do, the more correctly you use your leg, seat and Each one works best if you use it in coordination with the others. . Your legs also will come off your horse's sides, which may make him worry. The best way to learn to ride a horse is with a competent coach, but these You may feel unable to make all your body parts do all the things.

Imagine having a bit in your mouth. This will make you think of horses in a different way. Take time to 'bond' with the horse you are riding. Always groom him yourself, and give them extra attention. Treats are good too, but only healthy ones, and don't give him too many, or he'll demand them all the time. Remember horses are living creatures, so you should respect them. Remember to first squeeze, then make a clicking noise with your tongue, then kick. Only use a whip as a last resort. Horses are willing to please if you know how to ask them correctly. Get down, and lead the horse to what spooked it.

If it is something that cannot be seen, hold on and speak in a soothing voice. Not Helpful 3 Helpful Why does my horse keep pulling his head down - trying to make the rains longer when I ride him? He might be trying to tell you he need more rein. Let him have a loose rein after every ride to relax.

Not Helpful 2 Helpful Confidence is something that comes with time and experience. The more practice you get, the more confident you will become in your riding. Having a horse you trust also helps. Why does my horse buck when it goes into canter? It happens every time I ride her.

1. Wear proper horseback riding gear

Even though rhythm and relaxation are a bit of a chicken and egg conundrum, rhythm is at the base of the training tree because that is our point of entry as leaders in the partnership with our horse. If you feel nervous, then the horse will become nervous also. Working from the ground, our rhythmic movement sets the patterns and feelings of shapes that become familiar to the horse. This could cause injuries. Place the reins in your left hand so you can control the horse when you get in the saddle. Connected at the Hip Besides sitting in the correct position, riders need to have a full range of hip motion in order to set rhythm with their seat.

What can I do? Live life to the fullest. You could also try lunging her before you ride. Not Helpful 4 Helpful As a beginner, you shouldn't ride a young horse unless it is VERY well-trained. If you, for some reason, have to, these steps should still be taken. Just make sure to be constantly alert! Not Helpful 5 Helpful What if I have a Tennessee Walker and it's hard to go up and down with the rhythm? One thing you could do to keep a rhythm with your horse is to play some music. I have trouble keeping my heels down in canter.

2. Greet your horse

What do I do to help? I think it's my long boots, but I don't really know. It may be your saddle, the way the stirrups are faced. Try putting a metal pole through the stirrups so they are facing up and sideways, then wet the leather and in the morning they will be facing the right way and your feet will no longer be facing down. Not Helpful 0 Helpful 4.

Most Common Mistakes made by Beginner Riders

How do I know if my horse is cantering with her right leg? And how do I do it? Look down while you are cantering, you should see her right front leg come forward before her left. If your horse is trained well, you should be able to kick her with your left leg on the outside and she should canter on her right lead.

Vise versa for the left lead kick with right outside leg. Not Helpful 0 Helpful 1. I need to get more confidence in canter and jumping.

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I don't ride my own horse, I go to a club, so I can't do things like lunging or exercises. I broke my leg once when I fell off, which doesn't help. What do I do? Try to get as much time in the saddle as you can. If you don't feel comfortable doing an exercise, explain this to your trainer. Also, work more on what you are confident with. It helps to start out riding a horse that is dependable at first, this is what happened to me when I had an accident jumping a horse. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered.

Already answered Not a question Bad question Other. Tips Always sit deep in the saddle with a straight back, heels down, and toes in. Instead, sit without doing anything for a moment, then give one clear instruction.