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TrotTrotPumpkn
Jun. 6, 2011, 10:14 AM
So I rode in a clinic this weekend and watched the video, and I do not like what has happened to my posting trot!

My left leg is quiet and in good position. My right leg pumps every stride (almost looks like I'm kicking, but I'm not) and is on or in front of the girth most of the time. What the heck! I "feel" like they are even and wasn't aware of this until I watched the video. Also, if I ride with a loose girth the saddle slips right, so I am weighting that leg more heavily.

Besides the easy answer of "bring your right leg back" any ideas on exercises to fix this problem?

Bearbie
Jun. 6, 2011, 10:31 AM
Have you checked your stirrup length? It sounds like your right stirrup may be a smidge longer and you are having to reach for it, making your right leg a little less tight than the left.

TrotTrotPumpkn
Jun. 6, 2011, 10:39 AM
You know, I cleaned and conditioned my saddle before the clinic and took the stirrups off and put them back on (quite possible they got switched around). It is realistic that the left (or former left) one is stretched from mounting, especially with this new horse who I have had mounting issues with (lots of mounting from the ground the last six months). I will look at them more closely.

I was suprised my regular instructor hadn't commented on this issue before and that would go along with the stirrups being off...mmmm

Maybe my right leg is shorter!!

Assuming that the stirrups are even, keep the good ideas coming!

osgoka01
Jun. 6, 2011, 11:09 AM
Lose those stirrups! What you are seeing is simply weakness.....just as you are right or left handed, the same goes for your legs. One side will always be stronger! Riding without stirrups will not only strengthen your legs, it will lengthen you from hip to heel and add core strength. Not to mention it is very hard to lean when you are without stirrups!

As a junior rider we rode all winter without .... I'm talking no leathers/ irons on our saddles from end of November through mid March when we started showing again. A great excercise is posting trot for a 20m circle into a figure 8 so that the 2nd 20 m circle in the opposite direction is in the half seat (yes, you can hold yourself there without your irons. :)

Another trick is to shorten your stirrups 2-3 holes from where you are comfortable and really stretch down into your heals. It will feel funny but it will be easier for you to hold your leg in the correct position. Work in 2 pt position and let your leg rest against the saddle in the correct position.

Good luck! You will get there.

sp56
Jun. 6, 2011, 11:29 AM
It might not be you...

Horses aren't symmetrical and their asymmetry can sometimes cause you to look like you don't know what you're doing. The fix: figure out which side the horse is weak on and focus on building his strength on that side. The saddle might not fit either and might be slipping as a result.

Then again, if you ride a different horse and still have this problem, then it's probably you and I'd recommend abandoning your stirrups for awhile. ;) Or ride with only one iron a time and figure out which one is harder to ride without and just ride without that one until it's comfortable-ish.

TrotTrotPumpkn
Jun. 6, 2011, 11:34 AM
This is a green horse that I have been bringing along and yes, he is extremely one-sided. It is something we are working on. He tends to fall out his outside shoulder on any turn as well, but particularly turning to the left. However in the video the issue was on the straight away just as much as on a turn.

KateKat
Jun. 6, 2011, 11:47 AM
you might also be twisting your hips for some reason. I would guess that your right one is slightly more forward, for what ever reason. If your guy has trouble turning left, it could be related to that i.e. like someone else mentioned, you're compensating for his assymetry. Next time you ride, make a conscious effort to see if your hips are square and even.

Stellar_moves
Jun. 6, 2011, 11:52 AM
Lose those stirrups! What you are seeing is simply weakness.....just as you are right or left handed, the same goes for your legs. One side will always be stronger! Riding without stirrups will not only strengthen your legs, it will lengthen you from hip to heel and add core strength. Not to mention it is very hard to lean when you are without stirrups!

As a junior rider we rode all winter without .... I'm talking no leathers/ irons on our saddles from end of November through mid March when we started showing again. A great excercise is posting trot for a 20m circle into a figure 8 so that the 2nd 20 m circle in the opposite direction is in the half seat (yes, you can hold yourself there without your irons. :)

Another trick is to shorten your stirrups 2-3 holes from where you are comfortable and really stretch down into your heals. It will feel funny but it will be easier for you to hold your leg in the correct position. Work in 2 pt position and let your leg rest against the saddle in the correct position.

Good luck! You will get there.

This.

Dropping stirrups. Solves. EVERYTHING. I take my stirrups off for the whole summer, and by the time the world show comes along, my legs are like concrete and are in the right position.

What also helps me, is watch videos on equitation clinics, read articles, and also read some more forums on the eq topic. Whenever I feel like I'm not as good as I should be, that's what I do and I try to apply it to my riding. I get someone to videotape me doing the exercise and then I try to compare the two and think "what can I do to make it happen?".

Good luck:D

rockfordbuckeye
Jun. 6, 2011, 04:45 PM
I do this as well and it comes from my hip flexor/hamstring being much tighter on one side than the other. This draws my hip angle closed and doesn't allow me to get nice and deep in my heel on that same side. So if you see me from one side my position appears [more] correct and if you see me from the other I have a bit of a chair seat and am more pinchy with knee. I also ride longer in the more loose angled side as my knee drops lower from the more open hip flexor. It's annoying! :no:

Working with a pilates instructor out of the tack has really helped me to even out to where it's better. It used to be very noticible. Now it is less noticiable (unless I am stressed and get rigid and then that sneaky leg comes right back up!)

Making sure to stretch really well before I ride and stretch daily in general has helped. I think it takes a lot of time to make progress on hamstrings and hip flexors - esp. for those o us who sit a lot at work.

I don't think there is much that has helping during riding though - no stirrups just causes me to want to close that angle and pinch even more - so though the strengthening would be nice, I think until I am more flexible and using my body correctly- it may be more harmful. My pilates instructor (and PT) always stress to me that before you should strengthen a muscle group you should first achieve flexability.

So my advice: get thee to a pilates class or get with a PT for assessment.

Across Sicily
Jun. 6, 2011, 07:03 PM
If horse is one sided it may be worth having a chiro take a look at him. Sometimes despite all the work in the world they can't fix it very well without an adjustment. (ask me how I know!) A couple of chiro treatments on my greenie made ALL the difference in the world.

Also have yourself checked out with a chiro. Worth a shot ;) and much less painful than doing no stirrups for months on end!

alto
Jun. 6, 2011, 07:21 PM
This is a green horse that I have been bringing along and yes, he is extremely one-sided.

I assume he's also young - DO NOT DROP your strirrups :rolleyes: you want to remain very light on the back in a young green horse.

If he's young & green or just green, stirrups are also there for your safety.

You do want to fix your leaning problem or assymetry though, as you need to balance the horse out so that he begins to develop more symmetry - if your coach has been letting this go, ask why: coach has maybe been focusing on other more important issues ... or you need to look at additional coaching from someone else.



he is extremely one-sided
This is something I'd definitely want to work on with good, consistent coaching - if you're only doing 1 lesson a week, try some 3 day formats or lesson every other ride or lesson for 20min at the start of every ride etc.

doublesstable
Jun. 6, 2011, 07:32 PM
I am extremely stronger on one side than another where trainers "do" notice... Now that I am aware of it I have been working to fix it.

Before I ride I do stretching exersizes. Making sure my head is straight, shoulders are even, hips, back, seat etc. I watch my posture when walking, sitting (expecially at the computer) and doing chores etc.

I watch videos of beautiful Eq riders - keep that visual in my head.

When schooling on the flat or even jumping I make sure to go both directions equally. Bending both directions etc.

I have an issue colapsing my left side rib cage and droping the left shoulder - I was told by a trainer - "LBRS" (Left Boob to Right Shoulder)... I guess this is a common problem. :lol:

To me reading your post it seems like your issue is coming from you hips.... you are leading with your right hip and twisting.. similar problem that I am having. This is so normal because most horses track better to the left - - - think about it; when you track left the bend of your horse is around your left leg and you let your left shoulder and hip go back and your right hip more forward...

Ride a lot of straight lines focusing on being straight. Trot over poles if you have those with stripes and make sure you go right over the stripe in the "center"...

It sounds like you have taken the first steps to resolve the issue.... and videos are "awesome" learning tools. My trainer says he wants to video me in my lessons.. they do this a lot. The gal at the barn that recently won a "big" Eq final videos all her lesson rides....