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Spinoff:Correct stirrup position

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  • Spinoff:Correct stirrup position

    What is the correct position of the foot on the stirrup? My understanding of what George Morris says is that the outside of your foot should touch the outside branch of the stirrup iron, with the iron angled across your foot so that the outside branch leads the inside. I was originally taught that your foot went against the inside of the stirrup. I have changed it to the outside, because of what Mr. Morris says, but I have a great deal of difficulty keeping it angled correctly. My foot REALLY wants to be straight across it. My trainer has argued for placing the foot to the inside and at a clinic the other day with Joe Fargis, he insisted the foot be touching inside branch of the stirrup and straight across the stirrup. My foot and leg was much happier that way and my trainer felt vindicated. Just wondering if I am misinterpreting George Morris' position?

  • #2
    Well this is from the mouth of Mclain Ward: Stirrup position is a personal preference and whatever you are most comfortable with is what you should ride with so long as it does not affect the rest of your position negatively.


    The way I see it everyone has different body shapes, angles, and lengths so its ridiculous to think that one thing would work for everyone. Conversely, all horses have different barrel sizes and shapes so no one persons leg will sit the same on every horse and not every horse will carry a riders leg the same. I'm not saying GM or JF is wrong but on an advanced level it would come down to personal preference.
    "Using draw reins without spurs is like going to the bar with no underwear on. You're just waiting to get f***ed."

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by luckeys71 View Post
      at a clinic the other day with Joe Fargis, he insisted the foot be touching inside branch of the stirrup and straight across the stirrup.
      I thought this was weird, too! I actually misheard him (my brain filled in what it expected to hear) so I didn't actually change my foot position, but he never said anything and I was much more comfortable. I tried riding to the inside today and it was too uncomfortable...
      "Many are riders; many are craftsmen; but few are artists on horseback."
      ~George Morris

      Comment


      • #4
        Back in the 1960's when I was learning to ride the foot was in the stirrup touching the inside branch. So when I started riding lessons again in the 2000's I was told it should be touching the outside branch.

        I have been working on this "still" but I find when I get into a pickle I slide my foot to the inside branch (mostly with my left foot) - weird I know. However saying that; I ride better with it more towards the outside of the stirrup branch. It seems like it allows me to not pinch with my knees and to be able to wrap my lower legs around the horse better.

        I agree with the poster that said it depends on the horse conformation and the rider conformation which ever puts the leg in the best position.

        Maybe when in doubt put it in the middle?
        Live in the sunshine.
        Swim in the sea.
        Drink the wild air.

        Comment


        • #5
          I can't tell you what is truly "correct", everyone will always have different opinions. But most of my trainers have felt the same way as GM - iron angled across the foot with the outside of the foot touching the outside of the iron. In the last few years, I've had major problems with my ankles and now it is painful to ride this way. Having the outside of my foot against the outside of the iron causes my ankle to "break" and bow outward to the point that I have zero support and my legs begin to shake from the pain of it. Granted, I could just be weaker now but in my opinion stirrup position is a matter of personal preference. Especially if you're not riding in a big eq ring!
          Zone V IHSA Alumni

          "Ride with your heart and you'll never lose."

          Comment


          • #6
            Women usually have a different geometry (Q angles) in their lower bodies than men do, so what is "correct" and works for a guy may not work for a female. Throw in a round barreled or slab sided horse, and I doubt that any blanket statement can be true.

            I have to ride so that my knees don't kill me 24 hrs a day, so right now I'm using wedge pads. I hope that will help, but if not I'll probably go back to the Herm Springer jointed ones.

            Comment


            • #7
              I have found that when your foot touches the outside branch, your stirrup and stirrup leather lies a little closer to the horse which puts a little less twist in your ankle. I think it also helps keep you from letting your ankle fall in because their is a little more support for your arch. However, this position may be very uncomfortable for some people (possibly having to do with how high/low your arches are). So for me, I like to see my students have the outside branch leading as much as is comfortable but never the inside branch leading.

              Comment


              • #8
                I too learned to ride with my foot against the inside branch, and that's what's comfortable for me. Interestingly, in the current PH, Greg Best recommends this inside foot position.

                Comment


                • #9
                  There IS a most efficient position.......

                  Without getting into a complex discussion of lower extremity mechanics and Center of Pressure mechanics.......The cavalry has it right:

                  1. The foot naturally turns out as a function of horse width. Let it go where it wants....

                  2. The OUTSIDE branch of the stirrup should be pointed BACKWARD as to trace the balls of all 5 toes.
                  Under normal anatomical conditions, the arch created by the balls of all 5 toes angles slightly back from inside of foot to outside.

                  3. The front edge of the stirrup foot pad should be placed at the balls of all 5 toes (think stepping up a stair).

                  4. You could also, to mimic cavalry foot, place that front edge 1-2 cm further back, bringing the stirrup in closer proximity to the foots center of pressure in wide stance.

                  5. The foot itself should be centered on the tread.

                  For a more technical discussion:
                  http://www.equicision.com/rider-stability/


                  Regards,
                  Medical Mike
                  Equestrian Medical Researcher
                  www.equicision.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by medical mike View Post
                    Without getting into a complex discussion of lower extremity mechanics and Center of Pressure mechanics.......The cavalry has it right:

                    1. The foot naturally turns out as a function of horse width. Let it go where it wants....

                    2. The OUTSIDE branch of the stirrup should be pointed BACKWARD as to trace the balls of all 5 toes.
                    Under normal anatomical conditions, the arch created by the balls of all 5 toes angles slightly back from inside of foot to outside.

                    3. The front edge of the stirrup foot pad should be placed at the balls of all 5 toes (think stepping up a stair).

                    4. You could also, to mimic cavalry foot, place that front edge 1-2 cm further back, bringing the stirrup in closer proximity to the foots center of pressure in wide stance.

                    5. The foot itself should be centered on the tread.

                    For a more technical discussion:
                    http://www.equicision.com/rider-stability/


                    Regards,
                    Medical Mike
                    Equestrian Medical Researcher
                    www.equicision.com
                    Being an engineer, I'm gonna go with biomechanics instead of dogma.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Mildot........

                      My review combines multi-segment inverted pendulum mechanics, its' relation to gender differences in CoM control, in wide stance, heels back sit to stand mechanics.

                      Not ALL of what the cavalry states is supported by this research, however that is.

                      I'm curious, what type of engineer and research review helped you form your opinion on correct position?

                      Regards,
                      Medical Mike
                      Equestrian Medical Researcher
                      www.equicision.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I tend to ride wherever the stirrup wants to place itself... I used to ride with it straight across the ball of my foot, but as I started riding horses that required spurs and a more refined leg position because of that, my stirrups started to naturally align themselves in the GM position, i.e. outside branch in. I don't know why they do that, but ti's comfortable for me
                        Different flavors of crazy, but totally NUTS. You know its true. - GreyHunterHorse

                        http://showertimecontemplations.blogspot.com/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by medical mike View Post
                          My review combines multi-segment inverted pendulum mechanics, its' relation to gender differences in CoM control, in wide stance, heels back sit to stand mechanics.

                          Not ALL of what the cavalry states is supported by this research, however that is.

                          I'm curious, what type of engineer and research review helped you form your opinion on correct position?

                          Regards,
                          Medical Mike
                          Equestrian Medical Researcher
                          www.equicision.com
                          I haven't had the time to look through the research. What I mean is that being a mechanical engineer, an answer based on biomechanics carries a lot more weight than an answer based on dogma particularly if they differ.

                          I will definitely set aside some time this weekend to learn from your presentations.

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