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maudie
Oct. 11, 2010, 07:57 PM
I sat on the wired saddle at the WEG's and had the instructor fiddle with my position. When she set me up correctly I felt really crooked and twisty, I told her and she had me relax again. Long story short she told me I have a twisted pelvis. I got on solid ground again and pointed both knees forward and let myself relax, my shoulders are at a pretty severe angle from my knees. I can't believe I never noticed it before (I was a H/J convert so I never really spent much time IN the saddle), but it explains why I keep my stirrups different lengths and stand so oddly. Also, my horses tend to counter bend to the right (the way I bend).

Is there anything I can do to help this? Any special saddles or pads I can use? I'm really just at a loss. I can always just try to modify my position, but it will probably be difficult to sustain for an entire lesson.

bossmare18
Oct. 11, 2010, 08:10 PM
Chiropractor? Physical Theraphy?

buck22
Oct. 11, 2010, 08:16 PM
yoga might be a good place to start, develop some body awareness so you can be more conscious and maybe take small steps throughout your day trying to straighten yourself.

I would also suggest having a saddle fitter give your saddle a look for evenness, its entirely possible that your saddle has been worn in uneven, and even your leathers stretched unevenly.

Hampton Bay
Oct. 11, 2010, 08:44 PM
I wouldn't put too awful much stock into that pressure-sensitive saddle or into the woman looking at the results. I watched 5 people, all of whom "didn't put the left leg on the horse". I literally had to force my left leg onto the "horse" to get any kind of reading. And honestly, I stopped listening when she told me to turn my toe out and put the back of my calf on, and to pump with my seat to keep the "horse" moving.

So yeah, it might be right, but have a good chiro or PT evaluate you before you take that experience as gospel.

EqTrainer
Oct. 11, 2010, 08:45 PM
Anusara yoga and a good osteopath!

maudie
Oct. 11, 2010, 10:11 PM
Thanks! I'm going to see if the local Y has any free yoga programs (my school has a "YMCA club" that's free for students). I think I have a yoga book lying around the house somewhere too.

And it's not just on the horse that I notice it. When I stand up completely straight with both knees and feet forward, my shoulders are at a noticible angle. When both hands are limp, my palm is pretty much resting on the front part of my thigh instead of the side. Does that make sense?

HFSH
Oct. 11, 2010, 10:47 PM
You might make a trip to a chiropractor and have some xrays done.

I have a similar issue. I have a 18mm dislocated pelvis. :rolleyes: It sucks. However knowing the issue really helps me, and I know when I need some attention to my hips. And I was able to, based upon the xrays, have my GP refer me to PT, where I got some really good exercises to help me. Without the chiro diagnosis and xrays my GP would never have referred me to PT.

Petstorejunkie
Oct. 11, 2010, 11:09 PM
centered riding
chiropractor
acupuncture
massage
and practice!
i sat on the same machine, and was pleasantly surprised to hear that me, a formerly "twisted" was shockingly symmetrical. it took me 4 years to fix though

tollertwins
Oct. 12, 2010, 07:13 AM
I have a very assymetrical pelvis - which causes everything else to twist.

I ended up putting one of the FITS breeches shims on the underside of a seat saver to push my right seatbone forward a little.

Velvet
Oct. 12, 2010, 04:47 PM
Geez, people out here seem to think you can fix all physical anomalies by seeing a chiro, doing yoga, or just wishing it would go away. :rolleyes:

I have a vertibra that is slightly fused to another one--in the last part of my spine near the saddle. This makes things crooked all the time. I also have a leg that turns out when I'm completely relaxed.

Guess what? I've got a chiro for a friend, I've done yoga, I've also never used those to fix the problem. The problem cannot go away. You might have something similar that only an x-ray will show you.

Once again, guess what? Don't freak out about it! You can do upper level dressage and be crooked. You can also make a horse go straight. You have to find the center for yourself and your horse. Listen to your horse. Often they can even easily compensate for your imbalance. They only know what they learn from YOU.

Yes, it might be easier to be in the middle, perfectly balanced, and to have a horse that's perfectly symmetrical. Guess what? (I love using that line for some reason.) Horses are not symmetrical and they have their own uneveness! They ALWAYS will have some, and some have more than others.

Give up the idea of finding a cure. Instead, find the middle of the horse and your balance. Find what makes your horse happy--and enjoy your ride. :D

SBrentnall
Oct. 12, 2010, 10:35 PM
Give up the idea of finding a cure. Instead, find the middle of the horse and your balance.

Why give up before she's even started? At least let her TRY a chiro/PT/yoga solution.

I also have a pelvis that twists to the right pretty badly. It's a congenital defect visible in x-rays. However, regular adjustments and PT work keep it manageable and stop my hips tightening to compensate. Without it, it's simply impossible for me to find and stay in the middle of my horse.

HFSH
Oct. 12, 2010, 10:42 PM
Give up the idea of finding a cure. Instead, find the middle of the horse and your balance. Find what makes your horse happy--and enjoy your ride. :D

It's just that mentality that got me where I am, with a terribly dislocated pelvis and probably no chance to fix it. The whole deal it mentality instead of finding my issue when it happened and getting on top of it. :no:

Reddfox
Oct. 12, 2010, 11:10 PM
I have sculiosis as well as some twisted vertebrae. I have spent a long time fighting my natural position...I tried chiropractors, but they kept wanting to twist my neck and I wasn't ok with that :)

The breakthrough for me came after I had a riding accident and had to go to physical therapy. The therapist told me that because of the twist, my muscles have developed unevenly to compensate for my skeletal structure and he gave me exercises to do with the thera-bands to target the weak muscles.

He also told me that while the skeleton is the underlying structure and informs stance/posture - muscle development can over-ride that and you can be close to pain-free. He also told me to concentrate on core work and that riding is unique in it's ability to target the core and those deep muscles that directly impact skeletal alignment. Best advice I ever got...

2 years later - I register as having straight posture and my position is better than ever and my horse is straighter and more responsive than ever and I am 90% pain-free.

Velvet
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:41 AM
Um, for those who missed the point...

Deal with it meaning you CANNOT change some things about your skeletal structure--unless you have surgery. I didn't say don't work the muscles when you ARE in the middle of the horse and helping it balance.

My point was, there's NO magic bullet for a major structural issue. Not with people, nor with horses (outside of surgery). It takes work to stay in the middle and in balance, but everyone's body is unique and trying to straighten yourself through other methods only create compensation in other areas.

THAT was my point. :yes:

coymackerel
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:59 AM
Hmmm, I had a rotated pelvis one time after a nasty fall and it took some very deep (and painful) massage work to loosen up the muscles enough for my chiro to get me back in alignment. Not sure if this would help in your situation but might be worth a try.

purplnurpl
Oct. 13, 2010, 12:14 PM
Geez, people out here seem to think you can fix all physical anomalies by seeing a chiro, doing yoga, or just wishing it would go away. :rolleyes:

:D

AMEN! THANK YOU!

It's your conformation and you must work/live with it.

My spine twists like a double helix. Therefore my left hip is forward/right hip back and my left iliac crest is 1cm higher than the right. I have a higher % of dorsal flexion in my right foot therefore my right leg is always longer. My right leg is weak due to being injured several times therefore it does not work quite right. (lol, pardon the pun)

I have to make myself feel like I'm falling off my horse to the inside when cantering right--then I'm straight. And I usually make my right stirrup leather (jumping saddle) higher to accommodate the over flexion in that ankle.

That being said, my horse has a drop hip on the left side and he circumducts his right hip. That's not my fault, it's his conformation.

No Chiro can fix these issues. It's how G-d makes us. We just have to deal.

I actually changed the symmetry of the twist on my 1st jumping saddle---I think. I looked right down it's dorsal one day and the sucker was not straight. oooops! But that particular horse also had a higher left shoulder, lower right back and a twisted neck (her head always pointed a little right). So maybe it was her fault...? one can only hope.

If you have not diagnosed the issue that is a good place to start. But having a chiro try to change your conformation is...blah blah blah.
The body learns to deal with itself and compensate for conformational asymmetries accordingly.
Rotate your stirrup leathers no less than once a month.

I'm a biomechanist BTW. I worked in hospital movement lab for quite some time.

AzuWish
Oct. 13, 2010, 12:51 PM
My right iliac was rotated until I saw a physical therapist. Turns out that was causing my lower back pain (because any movement my hip made it stole from my lower back) and causing my inability to really plug into the saddle (any time I did, it drew me into a perch again).

It all stemmed from one area: the rigidity and atrophied muscles of my right foot. This condition also causes shin splints and knee pain. Something I've had issues with since I was 14 years old.

So while the PT could manipulate my hip back and I could do all the hip stabilizing exercises and pulling my iliac back under my own power, every morning when I walk the dogs, my hip gets pulled slightly forward again. So then I have to undo it that day, or if it builds, it gets worse.

Now that we have pinpointed the foot problem, I have to toe raises and other stuff to strengthen my foot. Eventually the idea is to get my foot working normally so it won't pull my hip out slowly over time.

My point is that even if it is a conformational problem, you can learn how to manage it. If we didn't pinpoint my foot, I would continue to manage my hip the way I had been.

Also, yoga and correct riding really can't undo a serious problem. I tried this for years before realizing it didn't matter how much I exercised, I always had problems with plugging in.

Anyway a good physical therapist would be a great place to start. PT is like an onion, it can take several months of pealing away the layers to find the underlying cause. But it isn't a panacea. Though I suspect they can help.

Velvet
Oct. 13, 2010, 01:10 PM
Also, yoga and correct riding really can't undo a serious problem. I tried this for years before realizing it didn't matter how much I exercised, I always had problems with plugging in.

I'll give you an "Amen!" to that one, Azu. :D

Some things can be overcome and fixed, others you just have to deal with. It all depends on the root cause/issue.

Sometimes just learning to live with something makes it easier to learn how to ride better. If you stop trying to fix it, you can learn to work around it and move forward in your riding again!

Eclectic Horseman
Oct. 13, 2010, 03:38 PM
Newsflash: You will not be going to the Olympics.

But realistically, how many riders do? Even with serious physical limitations, you still can be a darn good and effective rider. Check out the para-equestrians if you have any doubt.

You will have to work harder than someone without these limitations, and it may involve unmounted "bodywork." I highly recommend

http://www.mary-wanless.com/RWYMapproach.html

and check out her source materials such as the Alexander Technique and Feldenkrais systems of bodywork. (Go ahead, Google them.)

If you can find an Alexander Teacher who is an equestrian, that would be ideal.
Good luck!

Where'sMyWhite
Oct. 13, 2010, 03:52 PM
Feldenkrais fixed most, not all, of my asymmetry due to scoliosis.

Velvet
Oct. 13, 2010, 04:08 PM
Newsflash: You will not be going to the Olympics.

Dang it, Eclectic, you're such a party pooper! I was always told to dream big. So my first one was the Olympic team on my broken down horse, and next I was going to have both of us shipped to my acre on the Moon so we could perform amazing piaffes and passages in low gravity.

You suck--for bursting my bubble. :cry:

Eclectic Horseman
Oct. 13, 2010, 04:31 PM
Sorry Velvet.

But I was just anticipating the unrealistic reactions of so many posters who seem to think in absolute terms. Like any rider can be good enough to get to the Olympics. Unless of course you have some legitimate excuse which is a free pass from making any serious effort...

Velvet
Oct. 13, 2010, 04:41 PM
Just wait until suzy reads this! She'll be annoyed with you too!

Then again, maybe she's one of the people who gets a pass... ;)

EqTrainer
Oct. 13, 2010, 07:30 PM
Geez, people out here seem to think you can fix all physical anomalies by seeing a chiro, doing yoga, or just wishing it would go away. :rolleyes:

I have a vertibra that is slightly fused to another one--in the last part of my spine near the saddle. This makes things crooked all the time. I also have a leg that turns out when I'm completely relaxed.

Guess what? I've got a chiro for a friend, I've done yoga, I've also never used those to fix the problem. The problem cannot go away. You might have something similar that only an x-ray will show you.

Once again, guess what? Don't freak out about it! You can do upper level dressage and be crooked. You can also make a horse go straight. You have to find the center for yourself and your horse. Listen to your horse. Often they can even easily compensate for your imbalance. They only know what they learn from YOU.

Yes, it might be easier to be in the middle, perfectly balanced, and to have a horse that's perfectly symmetrical. Guess what? (I love using that line for some reason.) Horses are not symmetrical and they have their own uneveness! They ALWAYS will have some, and some have more than others.

Give up the idea of finding a cure. Instead, find the middle of the horse and your balance. Find what makes your horse happy--and enjoy your ride. :D

Give up the idea of finding a cure?!!!!!!

I hooe she doesn't. Just because you have the issue you have, doesn't mean she also has an incurable crookedness and shouldn't try to resolve it. Until she finds out WHY she is crooked (hence my suggestion she go to an osteopath) she won't know if it can be fixed.

FWIW I was adjusted by mine today today and am perfectly, immaculately straight.. For now LOL and yes, I have bony involvement blah blah blah. Guess what?!! I like being straight and will continue to straighten myself until I can't sit on a horse anymore. Guess what? It's not that hard!!

Velvet
Oct. 13, 2010, 08:33 PM
I made the point of saying I have that issue and that she could have something similar. The following information was IF she does. I was speaking from my experience of having a permanent one. Everyone else out here was talking about impermanent issues and making it sound as if any permanent ones could be magically fixed by doing yoga, etc. I was giving the reality check for real, long term issues and letting the OP know that even those can be overcome and you can ride to the upper levels.

Reddfox
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:31 PM
Everyone else out here was talking about impermanent issues and making it sound as if any permanent ones could be magically fixed by doing yoga, etc. I was giving the reality check for real, long term issues and letting the OP know that even those can be overcome and you can ride to the upper levels.

My issues are also permanent - sculiosis doesn't just disappear and the pain that is caused by the twisting and warping of my skeleton is real.

There is no magic bullet - yoga is helpful because of the emphasis on symmetry and fluidity and because you are building muscle to help overcome skeletal issues. Chiropractors can be helpful to some people- but in my opinion, it doesn't address the underlying issue...if you never address the support structure (muscles and tendons/ligaments) all you are doing is putting on a bandaid.

I agree that you CAN overcome or at the very least compensate for skeletal issues. I am able to ride upper level movements quite competently and my skeleton no longer gets in the way because I have take the time through targeted exercises to build correct muscling and I have become OCD about fixing my position through repetition and practice.

maudie
Oct. 14, 2010, 09:16 PM
Thanks for all the help!

I talked to my trainer today, she had me ride with my left seatbone on top of the saddle. It stopped my twisting an turning, and my horse was going dead straight.

I'm still trying to find a good yoga class though! There are some at the local gym, but the instruction is severely lacking.

Brooklyn
Oct. 15, 2010, 05:32 AM
Sometimes you CAN fix things, but as the naysayers point out, there's no quick fix.

Torsion of the pelvis affects EVERYTHING we do. Chiro, myofascial release and yoga will all help -- do anything to increase body awareness and to rebuild your muscles to support a more stable body position, in and out of the saddle. The torsion of your pelvis ultimately causes uneven wear and tear on your joints (especially knees) and so it is worth addressing. The misalingment of your body also affects your proprioception so even a few small changes might even improve your feel.

Don't expect miracles, but know that every step you take to even out your body will make life easier for your horse and improve your effectiveness in the saddle. I found that a couple simple steps in the right direction made enough improvement in my riding that it becomes addictive.

goeslikestink
Oct. 15, 2010, 05:37 AM
I sat on the wired saddle at the WEG's and had the instructor fiddle with my position. When she set me up correctly I felt really crooked and twisty, I told her and she had me relax again. Long story short she told me I have a twisted pelvis. I got on solid ground again and pointed both knees forward and let myself relax, my shoulders are at a pretty severe angle from my knees. I can't believe I never noticed it before (I was a H/J convert so I never really spent much time IN the saddle), but it explains why I keep my stirrups different lengths and stand so oddly. Also, my horses tend to counter bend to the right (the way I bend).

Is there anything I can do to help this? Any special saddles or pads I can use? I'm really just at a loss. I can always just try to modify my position, but it will probably be difficult to sustain for an entire lesson.

ok apart frrom what everyone advises lok at page one here

and alter your stirrups to the correct lenght

http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=178116

the very 1st thing you must do as must do, is take your saddle to a saddler as in amasterscraftmen who can alter your saddle

as i take it you have been riding in this saddle a long time lope sided and not central to the horse which not only effects your balance but his to
as in a crocked rider makes a crocked saddle makes a crocked horse

the very next thimg you must do- is get a back person out for you horse

and to give the horse time off as no doubt hes very stiff on one side so isnt and cant be striaght as its effects his way of going

a mastercraftmen can tell just how much your leanign on one side
and can alter the saddle to have a better fit for the horse and for you

a person thats not sitting central to the horse can actually cause permenant back damage so its importtant you get the horse look at and give the horse time of to recover depending on what they find

not stting correct affects your position and your balance , so i this where the new instructor has told you and corrected your position good on her
you now need to learn how to ride using your seat and sitting central to the horse this why schooling and learning to ride properly is important
before one learns to jump
iwould surgest you ask the new trianer to put you on a school horse
and re educate your seat as in learning to use it properly and indenpenda ntly from you hands and legs as no doubt when riding lope sided its rather common to use your bodyweight into the bridle area rather than the seat area

you need some lesson on the lunge to work without stirrups in walk trot and canter

go to bottom of helpful links pages and look for other training methods

your equipment when riding a horse must be well fittedat the moment its not
so is really important you address that

as if you do thi will improve your position and balance and will learn to ride
your horse knowing full well he is comfortable and he will then beable to do more thingand wont be advading you on your weakesss side so learn to give on the strongest side as in you give which will also even the horse up