I’m sure you know that riding is a sport, and that we riders can get quite offended if someone suggests that the horse does all the work.
However, when you are riding are you really behaving like an athlete yourself, or in fact are you on autopilot just rising up and down to your trot and not really thinking about how effective you are being in this partnership?
If riding is a sport, then each time you train you should be tuned into your body and how effective it is being today.
If you ask runners or tennis players for example they rarely go into a training session and just go through the motions. Their whole body is switched on, muscles primed and ready to perform.
How many of us can truly say when we ride our bodies are switched on, muscles firing to perform at their best? But you expect your horse to do this?
If you watch the top riders you will see their muscles are switched on and active when they ride; no ones pootling around Badminton on autopilot! Yet I see many riders even those at competition just getting on board and expecting their horse to perform whilst they just sit on top maybe with the odd flap of a leg or twiddle of a rein…….
So I want you to think about this when you ride this weekend, no you may not be riding around Badminton but I presume when you ride you want to be improving and therefore it is a training session?
Embrace your inner Equestrian Athlete and get on with the intention of really working hard yourself, using your body and focusing on your part on improving your partnership with your horse.