• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Light Bulb Moment! It Has Been My Feet!!!!

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Light Bulb Moment! It Has Been My Feet!!!!

    I decided last month that I was going to take advantage of the fact that I don't have a whole heck of a lot to do right now. I purchased a block of 20 lessons with my instructor and have been riding in three lessons a week for the past four-ish weeks.

    A couple of weeks ago I was in a lesson and struggling with my freaking feet. My legs/feet have been an issue for a while. A long while. When I first started down the dressage road, in December of 2007, I was losing my stirrups on a regular basis. Because of my spinal cord injury, I can't feel my feet. The general consensus was the I was losing my stirrups because of that loss of feeling, but if I could stop gripping with my legs I wouldn't suck my legs up and if I stopped sucking my legs up I would be able to keep my feet planted in the stirrup. All this effort was put into trying to figure out how to tell my damaged body what it needed to do and where it needed to be.

    Anyway, I had some success. I got to the point where I wasn't losing my stirrups, but I was still having problems. I would feel like my feet (especially the right foot) would start to rattle around in the stirrup, and my legs would get grippy to compensate. It was a circle of errors.

    Then a couple of weeks ago I was in a lesson and my instructor told me that as I started to rise in posting trot to feel like my upper half was lifting up, while my lower half was sinking down. Nobody had ever offered that direction before, and it made total sense. Suddenly my leg stabilized, I could feel my weight sink down through my legs and into my heels and yet, I was also rising at the same time. Unbelievable feeling. Suddenly my rising trot seemed effortless, and simple. It felt right and good.

    And the best part was that I wasn't gripping at all. My saint of a gelding was able to to really lighten in front, and move forward in a way that I had never really experienced before. I mean, I had experienced it before, but never because I was purposefully doing something to get it since in the past I had been clueless as to what I had done to get it.

    This all made me think about something I had heard before, and read, about how the rising portion of the posting trot did not happen from the feet. We aren't pushing ourselves up from our feet. Which had never really made much sense to me. But now I am thinking about it, and considering how it would seem that if I am letting my weight sink down as I am rising, I wouldn't also be pushing up from my feet at the same time.

    So I am riding in a lesson the other day and playing around with this, thinking all these deep dressage thoughts and it suddenly hit me why my feet had felt so un-anchored in my stirrups for so long. I had spent years posting from my toes. I was raising and lowering my heel! It has been my feet all along! No wonder my leg has been so unstable. It has nothing to do with being a para-rider, and everything to do with an incorrect technique.

    My transitions have improved immensely. My horse is so much better at being forward now. It feels wonderful. And it looks so much better.

    I had to share! This is huge for me.

  • #2
    Congrats! I love light bulb moments! Some people have dimmers... other's have switches, where it's all or nothing.
    Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

    Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010


    • #3
      Yay...good for you! I know exactly what you are talking about even though I ride western. I started out with feet WAY out in front and out to the sides. Gradually learned to bring them under me and point them straight ahead. Last week I had the same light bulb in MY head. I ride off my toes with heels up...not posting or I would have had the same up and down as you.

      Once I relaxed my feet (which started up in my thighs) I sat down. The jog got soft, he relaxed and we are both very happy now!

      You're doing great! And kudos to you for getting the lesson blast!
      Ride like you mean it.


      • #4
        You got it!! Lead with your hips. Your shoulders and legs will come along.
        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.


        • #5
          That is why it is good to do a change of trainers, or do a clinic, every now and then - a different set of eyes, a different way of saying things, a different emphasis on a certain point. So when a person is all worried about upsetting a trainer by going to a different instructor, they need not to think that way.
          Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


          • #6
            Yay!!!! So happy for you!! I will try to take this advice! Heard during my lesson recently, "there is posting, and then there is launching yourself out of the saddle."

            Good for you! And glad you're taking advantage of your break!!
            LarkspurCO: no horse's training is complete until it can calmly yet expressively perform GP in stadium filled w/chainsaw juggling zombies riding unicycles while flying monkeys w/bottle rockets...


            • Original Poster

              I just got back from my last lesson of the week, and I am just blown away by how much more effective I am with everything, simply by addressing that one issue.

              I finally feel as if I am riding, as opposed to just wandering around the arena. And, OH MY GOD! I now know that the outside rein does serve a purpose.

              I cannot even begin to explain how helpful it has been to take so many lessons. I wish I could afford to do it forever. But at least I am equipping myself with the tools necessary to make my non-lesson rides productive, too. I am not very dedicated, but my riding friend who moved barns with me last September is. She pushes me to get up in the morning and ride with her.

              And I am going to ride in a clinic next month, too. My instructor is bringing up someone from California, and I am going to do it. I am so thankful that para-equestrian sports have gotten all this positive attention in the last year or so. Especially in the dressage community. It makes instructors and clinicians more open to working with riders who have physical issues.

              I think having a new instructor has helped. I think moving to a busier barn, where there are lessons going on and so much learning taking place, has helped, too. I might come out to ride, and then hang around and watch someone else have a lesson. This barn isn't any bigger, as far as the number of horses goes (both have about 10 horses), but there is just so much more going on here. Having the health issue and surgery last fall scared me, not knowing if I was going to be able to ride again. So now that I am riding, I want to really and truly ride. Make it count some how.

              And to have this light bulb moment? Icing on the cake.
              Last edited by IdahoRider; May. 25, 2013, 12:41 PM.


              • #8
                Thank you for posting about your success, IdahoRider.

                I'm newish to this style of riding and have been struggling with coordinating all the parts so your post is very encouraging. I know a big piece of it is just hours in the saddle and you have just reinforced that.

                Wishing you many happy light bulb moments in the days to come!


                • #9
                  Wonderful! Wonderful! Wonderful! I read your posts like their a great book! I identify so much with your situation.

                  Congratulations and good for your friend to keep nudging you.
                  Ride like you mean it.


                  • #10
                    Congrats on the major light bulb moment, IdahoRider! How exciting, and for you to instantly notice all the great changes in your way of riding right away just because of this one change. Wishing you continued success!


                    • Original Poster

                      Thank you, everyone! I am thinking that sitting in the the saddle, and having a stable leg and a stabilizing heel, is such a foundational block that 'fixing" that one aspect brings everything else along exponentially.


                      • #12
                        You bet it is. And once I got the feel of it, everything else is clearly wrong! Amazing how such a 'little' thing can make all the difference.
                        Ride like you mean it.