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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May. 16, 2008

    Default Riding with one stirrup? Uneven stirrups?

    Hi everyone,

    I have a longstanding issue with having too much weight in my right stirrup and too much weight in that seatbone.

    Would riding with one stirrup help as an exercise? Would dropping the left or right stirrup be best? Dropping the right would make me perhaps focus on keeping my weight in the left stirrup, but dropping the left stirrup might make that leg longer and encourage me to contact with the saddle more on that side.

    Any other tips, tricks, or exercises that might help?

    P.s. I've tried riding with no stirrups/bareback. This helps at the trot, but I get too discombobulated at the canter to make it productive (and the weight thing is worst at that gait).
    2007 Welsh Cob C X TB GG Eragon
    Our training journal.
    1989-2008 French TB Shamus Fancy
    I owned him for fifteen years, but he was his own horse.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2002
    Harrisonburg, VA


    Years ago, when I was riding hunters, some lessons we alternated one stirrup or the other on the flat. You can definitely telll which side you have issues on doing that! I tend to curl like a C (to the right) so constantly try to remember to lift that right shoulder....

    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug. 3, 2004
    San Francisco


    I find posting with one stirrup to be a very useful exercise. Make sure you drop each stirrup in both directions.

    I find I needed to raise my knee on my weak side. It has been a while since i have done it.
    A man must love a thing very much if he not only practices it without any hope of fame or money, but even practices it without any hope of doing it well.--G. K. Chesterton

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec. 16, 2010


    I did this before with a trainer, except I would drop one stirrup at a time and trot a circle in both directions (ie: trot to the left without my left stirrup only, then trot again without my right stirrup only and repeat to the right).

    For me, I was able to tell instantly that I had a harder time posting when I dropped my right stirrup going to the left (but had no problem without my right stirrup to the right), so that was what I had to practice.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 6, 2005
    In the barn


    Kdash, that's how I fixed the same issue, too. Try dropping one stirrup and then the other - the one that makes you fall off is the one you need to work on LOL! It helps TREMENDOUSLY.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 12, 2006


    OP, I have the same problem. I seem to sit more heavily on the right and I can post either direction with my right stirrup, but neither direction with my left.

    I have started dropping the right and posting both ways with my left and then I do a bit of sitting at the walk and trot with my center on the left of the horse. So instead of trying to be centered with him, I purposely move my bum to the left in the saddle. I put a neck strap on him so I have something other than his mouth to balance on. And I don't do this for a long time, only about ten minutes each direction.

    It's a bugger of a problem to break!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct. 30, 2009


    I have damage to my right side and started riding very uneven. I dropped the right stirrup one hole and had to kinda reach for it. Now seems to be fairly straight but I still keep that one leather longer.
    "I've spent most of my life riding horses. The rest I've just wasted". - Anonymous

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2006
    Coastal New England


    I had an epiphany recently after struggling for years now with "sitting into the bend" without collapsing through my core, shrugging my shoulders, and only being able to maintain it for a few strides before my trainer would start shouting again. I understood what I was going for, but I just couldn't "get" the feeling and I always felt horribly crooked in both directions of travel.

    I've had a handful of trainers tell me to sit to the inside, step into my inside stirrup, turn my shoulders in the direction of travel, steer with my thighs/knees, etc, but it all came together recently while riding with a friend who encouraged me to pull my outside hip flexor toward the button on the pommel of my saddle. Miraculously and quite suddenly, my horse stepped under herself, traveled comfortably into the bend with little help from my reins or legs, and my legs, seat, core, and shoulders all seemed to go just where they needed to without tension when I wrapped my mind around that simple idea. I've noticed unbelievable improvement in our half passes (so much more forward and expressive) and changes (clean, uphill, and STRAIGHT!) Outside hip flexor to the pommel! I wish somebody had said those words to me 3 years ago!

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