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Basics of Riding Correctly

Teaching Under Saddle Balancing in my Classes is so very important. So much bad information being taught, when it’s actually very simple to learn the Basics of Riding Correctly. STAY OUT OF THE HORSES WAY AND GET ALONG WITH GRAVITY.  There are times we have to encourage a horse to move a certain way to help them to build their muscles correctly, so that they can carry a rider and help them to be stronger.  If you haven’t studied Biomechanics and don’t know how to achieve this, then please do so before saying your an instructor! I have seen, unfortunately far too many people hanging out their shingles as a riding instructor/trainer.

Please first if you haven’t yet…go read my page on saddle placement.

saddle fit caricature funny

Basic posture for sitting on a horse (thanks to Dr. Nicholson for Image) nancy horse connections with center of mass

Head, shoulders, hips, heels should be in alignment OVER the center of mass for the horse.

Elbows, hands, to the bit should be a straight line.

THUMBS should be UP! Elbows at your side.

TO TURN THE GREEN HORSE-Lock your elbow at your side and with your thumb up, move hand towards the inside of the circle-like a door on a hinge

**NEVER PULL BACK TO TURN A HORSE!  I see so many people, pulling their hand back to their hip to get the horse to turn, this locks the back leg on the side of the pull-this is a great way to teach a horse to rear, flip over, it causes extreme pain in the mouth, and is WRONG.

SEE SAWING THE REINS-Wow..I thought this was well known this is NOT how to get a horse to go on the bit, but found out it’s alive and well, and still being taught!  This does nothing but teach the horse to not use the hind end and how to evade the bit! DON’T DO THIS!

TO TURN AN EXPERIENCED HORSE-Squeezes on the inside rein, and inside leg on girth, outside leg back to ask the horse to bend. need to move your hands!


TO STOP-A simple squeeze on the reins will get the horses attention, AFTER you slow down/stop your riding, stopping your seat will get the horses attention, and a very well trained horse can stop just with that. Also, stretching your body, long and tall will get the horse to stop-and a little leg, will get the horse to come up under himself. I don’t advocate the one rein stop, too many people rely on it, and honestly I’ve seen people hurt more because of it. IF your horse is tossing his head, bracing, etc…CHECK YOURSELF! Most likely, either the saddle is too forward, or your hands are like fish out of water-flopping everywhere! Hold onto something, keep them steady and soft. You should rarely if ever have a need for draw reins, tie downs, etc.

You’re trainer should never be looking to get your horse a HEADSET.

Picture Below is what you DON’T WANT your horse to look like!nancys exaggerated flexion rolllkur


This should be fun! This should not be torture for you OR the horse!

  horse caricature several horses Some great videos for CORRECT RIDING:

Jane Savoie   

Will Faeber

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