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Monday, 31 December 2018

What to Work on While Riding Your Horse



Sometimes when we aren't experienced enough and don't have a trainer to help, schooling your horse day to day can be confusing.  What do we do to actually teach our horse's instead of trotting around clueless?  Here are some tips on what to do to school your horse.

1.  Check how your horse feels

I always start by seeing how my horse feels and take time to do this as I warm my horse up.  While warming up, I check how focused the horse is and then start by checking that my horse is relaxed and has a nice rhythm.

Then I move on to flexing my horse to make sure he is flexible and even on both sides then do the same with bending.  I then check other things such as leg yielding, backing up and transitions.  If I find that my horse isn't doing well with anything, I will work on those things.

Grey horse with a black mane being ridden in a outdoor riding school


2.  Pick out 'Problems'


Once we have checked how our horse feels that day (remember every day is different) we need to pick out the things that need work.  Depending on how long you ride your horse and the horse's fitness, will help you decide on how many things you will work on.  I like to pick two or three things but you can start with just one each day.  If you don't find anything to work on, Great!  You can work on teaching them new things, jump or just have fun.

A dun horse being ridden on a hack in a grass field


3.  Choose Exercises


Now you have chosen which problems you will work on, it's time to choose some exercises that will help you.  Now, to be able to do this you need to have worked with a trainer who has told you some exercises to do OR know a lot of exercises yourself.  For example, Shandy wasn't bending well in trot yesterday so I did spiral and figure of eight exercises.  Zoe was struggling to pick up canter so I rode up the 3/4 line, did a leg yield from L to F then shifted my weight and asked for the canter.

Two grey horses being ridden on a hack, walking on a road surrounded by grass fields


*disclaimer* 

I am not a horse trainer or any other equestrian professional.  I only give advice on horsey topics that I have experience as a horse owner in.  Please don't follow my advice without contacting a relevant equestrian professional.  

TheRider'sReins 

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