Leg Stability Exercises

Leg Stability Exercises

Exercise One:

Shorten stirrup length - like jockey style - to make students use their legs differently. You also put a roll of toilet paper (or use a beanie baby for young riders) in between the lower leg and the horse and have the rider try to hold that - adjusting the position of the roll to where the rider needs to hold more.

Exercise Two:

Out of the saddle, have the rider practice proper position (ear, hip, heel alignment) while sitting on a stool or on a yoga ball. Practice two point and posting, focusing on the rider's legs.

Exercise Three:

If student is a visual learner, use washable paint to mark where the rider's legs need to stay.

Exercise Four:

Tie a rider's stirrups to the girth in correct position (using a breakaway material such as baling twine) or use a bit of Velcro around the leg or stirrup and then to the girth.

Exercise Five:

Practice lots of standing up in stirrups without reins - practice with "airplane" arms.

Exercise Six:

No stirrup jumping (even if over ground poles or cross rails)

Exercise Seven:

Bareback riding (be careful with this exercise as it can cause some riders to grip in fear of falling)

Exercise Eight:

Dollar bills under rider's thighs and THICK sponges under ankles (between the horse and ankle)

Exercise Nine:

Riding half seat on the lunge line

Exercise Ten:

Instead of posting every other beat, hold the post up for two beats (Up, Up, down. Repeat). Then do the opposite, have your rider sit for two beats and then up for one beat.

Exercise Eleven:

No stirrup work on a lunge line, have your rider keep their legs long and loose, no heels down stuff, just letting gravity work on their legs. When one grips, gravity cannot work, and that is what keeps you on the horse. Sitting trot, no reins, holding front of saddle with outside hand, keeping inside hand as long and as loose as the legs.

Exercise Twelve:

Take before/after pictures or videos of your riders each lesson. Have the rider look and see what their legs and feet are doing.

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