Better Riding Archive

Inspiration & Advice from Riders Just Like You

If you are feeling stuck, there is often nothing as inspiring as hearing from someone else who also experienced challenges, but was able to work through them. It is inspiring to learn from others who have experienced challenges, made progress, and can share what worked, and what didn’t… Because there are certainly unique challenges in

How to Choose a Great Riding Instructor

You put a lot of faith in your riding instructor. Especially when you are just starting out, you trust their knowledge and judgement to choose a safe horse for you, and to find the balance between pushing you to improve and yet not asking you to do something outside of your skill level. You are

How Trying Harder Can Keep You Stuck

What do you do when you come up against a problem in your riding? Do you try harder, do you do more, do you do less, do you back off and look for a different approach? Many riders have highly “driven” personalities. We want to succeed, to do well, to progress quickly. However, the drive

Does Changing Disciplines Change Your Riding?

Will you ride differently in English or Western tack? Is one preferable over the other? If you’re a western rider, can you still apply the advice given to (or by) a rider sitting in a jumping saddle? I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy riding in a variety of disciplines. My first formal lessons as a

Why Do I Lose My Stirrups?

When your feet feel stable and “connected” to the stirrups, the rest of your riding can also improve. The stirrups help us stabilize in the saddle, allowing us to better use our legs and, when needed, redistribute our weight. But if you find one or both stirrups constantly wiggling on your foot, sliding towards your

Why Does My Horse Carry His Head So High?

Does your horse go around with his head up? You know he is supposed to carry it lower when you ride to better support your weight and so he can move more freely, but why does he have his head up in the first place? Good movement of a ridden horse involves much more than

Fit for a Rider – Improve Your Riding with These 3 Types of Exercise

We expect a lot from our horses. We climb on their back and want them to remain in balance with our added weight while going down the trail, jumping fences, performing the movements of dressage, or working a cow. As riders, when we increase our own fitness, we can balance and move better, making the

Why are Resolutions so Hard?

It’s that time of year… New Years is in just a few days. It is a time for many people to pause and reflect. What happened this year, and what is anticipated in the coming year? The new year is also a time of anticipating change, whether the change is to be healthier, work less,

How to Work Through a Riding Problem

When I work with riders who are brand new to riding, I find they focus first on the techniques and the positions. Where do I put my leg to get him to go faster? I’m using my rein, why isn’t he steering? How do I make him back up? They expect the horse to be

Maintain Great Riding Posture without *too much* Tension

Last week, I posted a blog video on “How to Stop Bouncing When You Ride“. In that video, I proposed the idea that most “bouncing” comes from too much tension, and I demonstrated how by deliberately tightening an area of my body, through pulling my shoulders back or gripping with my legs for example, I