Sometimes I say things to my clients that may sound a little unhelpful at first.
They can be struggling with a movement, or trying to balance on a gym ball and although I can see what is happening I may not initially correct them.
It sounds harsh but what I want them to do is feel what is happening and then look to correct it themselves. So much of riding is feel; feeling what the horse is doing underneath us and then how our body is responding to that.
The quality and effectiveness of how your body responds depends on how much control you have on your own body and how in tune with it you are.
Whilst it’s great to have eyes on the ground to help you out that’s not always possible-and they can’t be in the Dressage arena.
We need to learn to be more in tune with our bodies so we can feel ourselves that we are sat too left or tipping forwards etc.
It’s also about proprioception or body awareness -Equestrian translation…..Feel!
How do we do this?
In reality any form of fitness will give you better control of your body. Stronger muscles are more controlled muscles. So, for that reason I favour strength training, but I also like Yoga and Pilates as they focus on movement patterns and symmetry. So in an ideal world you’d be doing strength training and yoga or pilates.
I also really like balance work such as Gym Balls or Wobble Boards as you get direct feedback on how you move your body affects your balance. Sat too far forward…...you’ll fall off, sat to the right…..you’ll fall off, if you sit a little more to the right you will correct this.
It’s about learning to recognise your own imbalance and having the control and strength to correct them.
If you want some guidance in finding your feel I’ve got space for 121 training and space in some classes.