Force absorption is what your body is doing the entire time you are on a horse. Of course in reality your body is absorbing force when just walking around it’s just that on a horse it’s got an extra say 600kg of force underneath it to deal with.
If you’re wobbling around on board, maybe you have a wiggly middle, a nodding head or you have to stiffen up to hold yourself, they’re all signs you aren’t absorbing the movement as well as you could be.
Efficient Force absorption isn’t just so that you can sit and ride well. It’s also important to prevent injuries.
A really simple way of looking at how your body absorbs movement is by sitting on a gym ball and gently bouncing. Can you do this whilst maintaining a stable but not stiff torso? Think of relaxed muscle tension. Once you’ve got this bounce a bit bigger.
A great body weight force absorption exercise is squat jumps. Starting from a squat, you jump up and land back in the squat. If you then wanted to progress you could add height by jumping onto and off a box. Make sure you land with a strong torso and bent knees still tracking over your feet.
A great weight based exercise is the Kettlebell Swing. This requires you to both create acceleration and then control it at the top to bring it back down. It’s like the biggest trot you’ve ever ridden!
Being able to absorb force makes you more stable which relates back to the exercise we did last week.