how hard is it to sit canter w/o stirrups?


rather be riding...
May 22, 2005
For me, it depends entirely on the horse/pony. On my pony it's fine as he's got a quite an easy canter to sit to, but I've been on some that make me feel as though I'm going to be bounced off!


Active Member
Jun 6, 2007
Sunny South Wales
tis Littly's new exersise - she has mastered sitting trot w/o them so she has to master canter w/o - she can sit the canter with them - so I thought it would be easy to go without them - but she got all tense so she wasn't as smooth as she is with stirrups

I learnt to ride w/o a saddle and bridle (40 years ago) so a) I can't remember and b) I had to learn to use saddles & stirrups later on - so I haven't a clue!


Active Member
Feb 21, 2006
Sitting canter without stirrups is fine.

Unfortunately, coming back to trot tends to be slightly more of an issue ;)

Yip! I love cantering bareback and without stirrups but trot is a nightmare. I feel like Zebedee boinging about :p

Trouble is, if Joy feels me bouncing/likely to fall off she stops dead for me to sort myself out which is sweet, but not very helpful at times!


Active Member
Aug 22, 2007
echo doorstopper - canter is pretty easier, generally easier than trot but transitions can be a bit hairy esp if you get a bad upward transition. got to be said though once you've mastered that then you know your seat is getting good


Jan 2, 2009
i find it much easier and i do it better than i do with stirrups! i tend to tense my legs in canter when i have my stirrups, but if i take them away it able's my legs to relax. its much easier than trotting without stirrups, well i find it is anyway :)


New Member
Aug 12, 2005
Trouble is, if Joy feels me bouncing/likely to fall off she stops dead for me to sort myself out which is sweet, but not very helpful at times!

I wish my pony would stop dead :( when I bounce he goes AAAAAH OMG WTF IS THAT ON ME, MONSTER. and runs and runs. so I end up asking for canter again :eek: last time I tried this we cantered around without stirrups for three minutes cos he ran off whenever i asked for trot, so I vaulted off in canter and landed on my arse. GRACEFUL.


New Member
Feb 13, 2008
When my little girl had to do this she practised cantering bareback alot and then with the saddle but no stirrups and it seemed to make the transition easier for her !


Active Member
Jun 6, 2007
Sunny South Wales
this is it - I found it easier w/o cos of how I learnt!

I was surprised she tensed up :eek: When she loses one whilst riding, it doesn't bother her!

Seems its more a confidence issue with her then - I can work with that

bareback isn't a possibility with her pony - he is a very sensitive ickle soul


I tried
Did a circle
Came off :eek:

But then again I have the balance of a toddler learning to walk....:cool:


Sam Sam Forever
Jul 24, 2004
Visit site
You could always let her hold the saddle with one hand (inside hand if in an arena) during the transitions into canter and back to trot. That may make her feel more secure and therefore less tense.

I do this when i'm teaching children and adults to canter without stirrups.
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