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Timing the use of inside leg for leg yields

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  • Timing the use of inside leg for leg yields

    When I'm working on leg yielding out on a circle, sometimes I find that I'm using my inside leg but still not getting the reaction I want. I have an easier time doing this to the left than to the right. I'm wondering if, when going to the right, my timing of the inside leg aid is not correct.

    I'm assuming that I should apply it when the horse's inside hind leg is coming up underneath it's body, but hasn't yet touched the ground. This would be at the very top of the rise when I'm posting?

  • #2
    More like just as you are starting to come up in your post. But I find the timing easier to think of using my leg right after I feel the inside hind on the ground.You have more reaction time and use the leg just as the inside hind is leaving the ground. It makes a big difference!


    • Original Poster

      Thanks for the quick reply. What kinds of things do you notice happening if you don't use your leg at the right time?


      • #4
        Just not as much response to the sideways aid.


        • #5
          Using your leg when you are at the top of the post is just a hair late. You want the horse to start reaching sideways with the inside hind as soon as it starts to leave the ground.


          • Original Poster

            Thanks GG, that makes sense. My old habit was to press when I was sitting because it felt easier. That probably explains why, after my mare falls in, that I'm not getting as much of a reaction when I try to move her back out.


            • #7
              you need to ask when the horse can respond. so when the leg is leaving the ground might be a tad early because the other hind leg is in the way. you might practice in hand using you hand where you leg goes and practice the timing. it needs to be when the hind leg is off the ground and after it passes the other hind leg.

              there is always on sticker side so that is normal.


              • #8
                If you are riding correctly your leg should be "under" your seat/hip. As your horse "rolls" through a stride, your legs should be rolling through the stride just like the horse. You will "step off" with your leg while in the saddle just as your horse's hind leg "steps off". You just add a bit of leg as you roll through.

                I don't know if that makes any sense.


                • Original Poster

                  Update: Thanks for the suggestions everyone. When I rode earlier today I practiced trying to feel the trot and time the leg yields according to what the inside hind was doing. It definitely takes some getting used to, but when I use my inside leg as my horse's leg is going past the back one (and still off the ground) I got much better results.


                  • #10
                    I also add to put a tad more weight into the outside stirrup.
                    Plus I've always found that it's sometimes very hard for people to use their inside leg as they rise. I like to say to post towards the outside hand as you rise. Not a big move but just feel that your body, upper leg & if possible some lower leg is moving in that direction when you rise. It makes a big difference. If you just focus on using your lower leg & not your thigh & body you might actually lean over the inside leg which will pull your horse onto the inside aids. This way you are also training yourself & your horse to listen to your body, not just the legs.
                    Producing horses with gentle minds & brilliant movement!


                    • #11
                      Remember in LY , the inside leg is the leg you are moving away from. The outside leg, is a guarding leg, keeping the shoulders from leading , which can happen with too much inside flexion, and the quarters from leading.
                      Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.

                      Remember the horse does all the work, we just sit there and look pretty.


                      • #12
                        I like to aid at the upswing of the inside hind and just allows for the downswing to happen. If you aid at the downswing, they seem to want to dump onto their forehand.