Straddle the Horse

I love this…

“we tend to think of being on a horse as “sitting” on a horse, when in reality, we actually straddle the horse. If you were straddling something, lets say a small ditch, you would instinctively use your legs to hold your pelvis and upper body directly above your feet, even if you were to bend your knees. However, when you sit in a chair, your legs no longer feel they need to support the body, your feet go out in front of you, and you sit back on your buttocks.…. you do NOT “sit” on a horse, you STRADDLE a horse”

– Laura Martlock,

I can see how lots of rider problems arise from the idea of just sitting on a horse. Ideally first you teach the rider how to balance – how to go from just sitting on the horse to straddling the horse through correct posture and body awareness. Then you teach the rider how to ride – how to use their balance and the aids to control the horse. Of course, these two things are fairly fluid, often you teach both at the same time, and sometimes our riders don’t have the abilities to completely understand the concepts. But it’s food for thought.


Note: This is not professional advice, this is a blog. I am not liable for what you do with or how you use this information. The activities explained in this blog may not be fit for every rider, riding instructor, or riding center depending on their current condition and resources. Use your best personal judgment!

One thought on “Straddle the Horse

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