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I didn't realize.

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  • I didn't realize.

    I never thought eventing was easy, and I never thought jumping was easy, heck I don't even think dressage is easy. I thought I was a strong rider and had good balance. This changed when I went to my first lesson today at an eventing barn. My trainer had me do one lesson just focused on staying in the jumping position and standing up in my stirrups at the trot for a whole hour. My perceived 'strength' went out the window. Legs burning I left the lesson with the 'what did I get myself into?' question going through my head. Although it was hard, my trainer was great. I see her as 'old school'. She told me what to do and not so much HOW to do it and let me figure things out myself, which is great because sometimes there is only so much you can explain before the rider just has to figure it out.

    So, kudos to all you jumpers, eventers, and even dressage riders. You are stronger than I! HAHA
    http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
    Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!
  • Original Poster

    #2
    Oh also, do you guys have any at home exericses that I can do to help strengthen my core and legs? I realize you get it mostly by riding and doing hundreds of hours standing in stirrups but with no horse at home that can sometimes be difficult. I am hoping to contact my old barn and ask if I can exchange an hour or so of work for the opportunity to just ride.
    http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
    Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!

    Comment


    • #3
      I promise it gets easier .

      Lots of wall squats, and exersizes to improve hip, knee, thigh, and calve strength. Improving your core strength helps a lot too!
      Using resistance bands and ankel weights helped me a bunch (I had a knee injury), and strengthening my entire leg has helped improve my two point and position over fences. Going on long walks and hikes has helped me too, which can be nicer on your knees if you have joint issues.
      Eventingismylife
      http://www.jumpingthebigsky.wordpress.com

      Comment


      • #4
        An hour?! Oh lord, my knee would explode. If my back didn't first. But kudos to you if you pulled it off!!! Fortunately, that is not a required skill in eventing. Maybe because most of us usually hurt ourselves somehow...or maybe that's just a horse person thing? But welcome -- I've never looked back!
        Life doesn't have perfect footing.

        Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
        We Are Flying Solo

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          i can understand wanting to be super strong for jumping and being able to have the muscles to be able to hold the correct position when galloping. I can understand this and it felt great. My legs certainly hurt today! I'm going to have a friend of my Mom's make me a fake horse for me to practice on xD
          http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
          Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!

          Comment


          • #6
            First, ask your trainer what she recommends you do for strength (other than just ride more, of course ).

            My ideas: brush your teeth in "horse stance" (feet about two shoulder widths apart, toes pointing forward or at a 45 degree angle outwards, with your knees bent out and forward. MAKE SURE to keep your back straight - it should feel like you're tucking your hips under you, not like you're sticking your butt out or kinking your back) or in a wall squat. That'll get your quads nice and strong. You can also do gymnast jumps, starting in a squat with your hands at your sides, then spring up into the air, pumping your arms up. This is hard on the knees though.

            For calves, do calf raises, for strength as slowly as you can without losing form. It'll seem easy at first, and then you'll start cursing me and everything that made you want to ride in the first place.

            Try to have a small snack before and after you exercise - some toast or a small peanut butter and jelly sandwich before, and about the same afterward. You want a 4-1 carb to protein ratio for maximal healing in your muscles. And stretch out after you exercise, at least a bit.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Solara: Great reccomendations! I did ask my trainer, and she said "honestly I have no idea". This is why I think she is more old school, with her thinking of 'just ride and you'll get it'.

              I am not the best at the diet aspects. I'm not over weight by any means, 155 and I'm 5 feet 8 inches tall, not ideal weight but I'm happy with it.

              I will get to those stances and calf raises I like doing calf raises in the shower, might be a little dangerous in case you slip but I figure its a good time to do it haha.

              What about lying on my back and raising my feet/legs about six inches off the ground? That usually works my lower abs great and also my thighs.
              http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
              Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!

              Comment


              • #8
                Oh yeah - forgot about abs. If your back can take it, I have the perfect exercise for you: "v-ups". They're absolutely evil. Lie flat on the ground, legs stretched out straight and arms above your head. Then lift both legs and arms up, balancing on your butt, and slap your hands to your feet, then go back down. Be very careful starting these - keep your chin tucked to your chest to keep from causing impact to your head, and like I said, it can be BAD on your back.

                If those are out of reach (they are for me!) then do "mountain climbers": stick your legs straight up and, raising your shoulders and lower back slowly as you do so, "climb" up your legs to your feet, hand-over-hand(ish), then slowly lie back down (keep your shoulders off the ground if you can, with your chin to your chest). These aren't easy either, but they don't need as much fast twitch muscle - it should work your upper abs (from keeping your shoulders off the ground), lower abs (getting your lower back off the ground) and obliques (twisting your body to extend one arm higher at a time).

                You can also do a v-sit, similar to what you're already doing, but balancing on your butt with your legs at 30-45 degrees off the ground and your shoulders (ideally) mimicking them. Stay there, maybe bringing your legs and body closer together if you're really strong and balanced (I'm not, I fall if I try to move).

                But all of these are pretty hard - I can do maybe 2-5 of them at a time. Mostly, I do crunches and work really hard on my stances in karate, because doing those right works my entire body, and because karate occupies my mind enough I don't notice the pain until later.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Those exercises sound awesome!! Can you give me a link for the mountain climbers that might show pictures of the exercise?
                  http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
                  Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    This link has a LOT of exercises, which it gives weird names for (wtf is "power boat pose"?). What I call the "mountain climber" is very similar to what this page calls "alternating toe touches" - except with more steps in between, that is, extending on hand to the opposite knee, then the other hand to the other knee, and walking up my legs to my toes (approximately, I'm out of shape) and then going down slowly. Lots of other people call a different exercise the "mountain climber" - that exercise is just plain impossible for me to do right now (works the shoulders and arms).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Try this: http://www.successinthesaddle.com/

                      If it doesn't kill you, it will make you stronger.
                      Hindsight bad, foresight good.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by wildlifer View Post
                        An hour?! Oh lord, my knee would explode. If my back didn't first. But kudos to you if you pulled it off!!! Fortunately, that is not a required skill in eventing. Maybe because most of us usually hurt ourselves somehow...or maybe that's just a horse person thing? But welcome -- I've never looked back!
                        Dear me...my first hunt seat lesson was about 5 weeks ago and I couldn't go half way around the arena in 2 point. You are tougher than you think if you worked on that for an hour! I couldn't hold it for even a minute!

                        I put my saddle on a fitting stand and practiced 2 point at the stand still several times a day. I just watched the clock and first couple of days it was tough to hold it past a minute. After about 2 weeks I was doing much better and was quite proud of my accomplishment. Then I took another lesson....lol....I did do a lot better but it's not the same!

                        I've been doing squats, calf lifts (on a step) and lunges and it seems to be starting to make an impact.

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          Originally posted by hundredacres View Post
                          Dear me...my first hunt seat lesson was about 5 weeks ago and I couldn't go half way around the arena in 2 point. You are tougher than you think if you worked on that for an hour! I couldn't hold it for even a minute!

                          I put my saddle on a fitting stand and practiced 2 point at the stand still several times a day. I just watched the clock and first couple of days it was tough to hold it past a minute. After about 2 weeks I was doing much better and was quite proud of my accomplishment. Then I took another lesson....lol....I did do a lot better but it's not the same!

                          I've been doing squats, calf lifts (on a step) and lunges and it seems to be starting to make an impact.
                          Oh please don't think I was able to hold a two point position for an hour haha! I was able to do it for maybe five seconds, would "fall" into the saddle, and then get back up. One time I was able to get around half the arena though! I am going to talk to a friend of my Mom's to see if he will help me construct a horse which will probably consist of a barrel on an upside down saw horse and then some how make some 'stirrups'.

                          I talked to my old boss and it looks like I'll be able to ride multiple times a week in exchange for some manual labor, details have yet to be defined. I love doing calf raises on steps but I don't have any in the house so I usually end up jerry rigging something that looks like a step.

                          I will definitely take a look at those two links now!
                          http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
                          Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Unfortuently I can't afford to buy those DVDs though I am sure they are great help!
                            http://www.horsez-r-us.blogspot.com
                            Blog of an ordinary and every day horse lover!

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