Many times when riders talk about contact, it is discussed only from the perspective of the rider.
How to find steady hands or feel how much pressure to have on the reins. But the feeling of “good contact” is about more than just what the rider does with the reins, as the horse’s response is equally important.
Contact requires education, skill, and tact from both horse and rider, however it does begin with the rider.
If the rider’s rein pressure is inconsistent or jarring the horse will adapt to protect themselves, stiffening through their jaw and tensing their neck and back.
When the rider can be consistent and tactful with contact,
and the horse is educated to reach into the bridle, subtle communication can
happen through the rein aids, balance is improved, and the connection is
positive for both horse and rider.
In this week’s video, I will demonstrate what truly creates
good contact from both horse and rider and show you a simple exercise to improve
your feel of the reins.