when I sit to the canter...

joosie

lifelong sufferer of restless brain syndrome
Oct 28, 2004
7,001
2,995
113
New Zealand
... my leg position is fine, and I have no trouble keeping my bum in the saddle, but my hips turn into a big loose hinge and I move my upper body way too much. It's like I mimic the horse's movement with my body rather than following it with my pelvis. It's particularly pronounced on horses that need to be pushed on - in the past I've been chastised for swinging my lower leg too much, and I've worked so hard on keeping them still that I now (unconsciously) over-compensate by moving my body instead! I learned to ride by hacking, so I'm used to riding canter in a forward seat, which probably has a lot to do with it!
Does anyone have any tips for how I can get out of this awful habit? Or is it the kind of thing that simply comes with practice?
 

mustang mo

New Member
Apr 22, 2008
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I watched a video of My canter with the bare back pad- and My whole body including my bum was almost hopping up and down but actually in rythm -and it looked pretty controlled-I would say try to Keep in time and maybe set back a tad-and Hurry up and relax -Take a deep breath -Jess
 

rabbit

Devoted Clydie X owner
I'm relearning to ride with a correct seat. Apparently I've been riding on my "fork" (as my new RI puts it) and it causes me to lean too far forward, lose stirrups etc.

My RI said that my pelvis needs to move with the horse, and until it does, my upper body will move around to compensate.

I've no idea how I'm supposed to isolate/activate the pelvis, so I'm currently looking at Yoga/pilates.

Not much help, but you're not the only one.....
 

Nimbus65

Active Member
Aug 15, 2005
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0
36
Follow with your seat. That's what my RI has been telling me. Sit up, shoulders over your hips, strong through your core, relax your hips and lower back and tuck your bottom underneath you (sort of tilt your pelvis so that you lift your "fork" off the saddle). And try and follow the movement of the horse's back underneath you w/ your hips, keeping your shoulders/upper body still.

It will come . . . you're trying to unlearn one way of doing something and learn to do it differently - it's all about muscle memory and that takes a while (and practice).

N
 

neen

New Member
Oct 20, 2005
1,228
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London
Like you, I learned to canter in a forward seat and found sitting to the canter a bit mystifying at first.

You've described your hips as being like a big hinge. I found it helpful to think of two hinges -- one at the hips and the other higher up in the belly. The movement is between the two -- like belly dancing. Top half and legs stay still, the middle wiggles.

Worked for me, when I tried it. You could always practise belly dancing round the house to "get into the swing" -- gauzy costume optional.
 

molly34

devil's advocate ;)
Mar 9, 2006
1,739
0
0
Surrey/Hampshire
when I was little, the rare canters I had were a case of just hold on and don't interfere with the pony..... :rolleyes:

When I started having proper lessons, my RI taught us to try and keep our shoulders still and think of our bums polishing the saddles. That makes sense to my fuzzy blonde brain, but its still bloomin' difficult on some horses!
 

joosie

lifelong sufferer of restless brain syndrome
Oct 28, 2004
7,001
2,995
113
New Zealand
I'm relearning to ride with a correct seat. Apparently I've been riding on my "fork" (as my new RI puts it) and it causes me to lean too far forward, lose stirrups etc.

My RI said that my pelvis needs to move with the horse, and until it does, my upper body will move around to compensate.

Indeed. I've come to the conclusion that I have to work more on my pelvis movement before I can stop throwing my body forwards! And that means working on my leg position first... which means working on something else first... :rolleyes:

Thanks neen - belly dancing sounds fun, I'll get working on a costume right away!
 

WooHoo2

Delightfully Mad!
Apr 7, 2005
602
0
0
West Kent
Think of your shoulders sitting over your hips, this will keep you upright (you'll feel like you're going to fall off the back at first!)
Concentrate on your breathing & shoulders ~ open your hips to allow your legs to wrap round and go with the flow ~ and relax.

And DON'T row the boat with your butt!:D
 
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