This is a good basic leg development no
mater if you ride English or Western. It will change your posting dramatically
to a smooth no effort movement. Later if I get a volunteer I would like to get
images or photos to improve the explanation.
When you get in the saddle how does
your leg lay?
What does the outside seam of your
pants look like?
Is it straight from the center of hip
to center of the outside of the knee?
Does the seam go from center of hip and
gradually spiral toward the front of the knee?
Or does the seam go from the center of
the hip toward the back of the knee?
Something to try standing right at your
computer. Standing, legs and feet straight ahead, shoulder width apart. Now bend
your knees down in to rider position.
What do you feel?
How is the hip mobility?
Any tension anywhere?
Through the inside of the leg?
What does your seam look like?
The correct position
Might be better doing in the saddle.
Lift your leg out slightly off the
Rotate your hip inwards, not with your
muscles, but actually taking your hands and rotating the hip using your
thigh. It doesn't move hardly anything, but it will seem like it.
At the same time, taking your inside
thigh and moving back and around "out of the way".
Get into riding position at the same
Now the seat bones can't rotate back,
they stay in balance.
You're going to think, -"hey, my
knees are in and that will grip". But in that position, they are used
as a middle point for the whole leg. It's just laying there.
What does your lower leg look like? Is
the ankle is going toward the inside.
What does your thigh and pelvis feel
When on the horse you should feel as if
your legs are covering 100 times more than the first position I had you go
into in the above standing at your computer. You should feel like you melted
into the horse.
And how about those seams? When you are
in position, look at your seams. They go from hip toward the inside of the
knee called spiraling.
For the feel, take your hand and go
from the center of the hip on the outside and spiral it to the inside of the
Do that a few times to get the
sensation of what it would feel like when riding.
Do this on both sides.
On to Riding..
At the trot remember the feel that you
did with your hands in position 2, going from hip, spiraling to the inner
When you go to the post, keep that
thigh against the barrel.
But what are your knees doing?
Are they "fixed" or are they
The angle of the knee shouldn't change
much in posting - quiet lower leg.
The ankle should be the support (fixed
point) for the knee.
Let the pelvis be the moving part.
The when posting, the thigh will feel
more like it is covering the horse (rolling/spiraling).
Posting forward and not up and
Your rear is going off the seat very
little, just enough to clear the seat of the saddle.
Rolling the thigh and the knee will not
flop around and not cause air between you and the saddle.
If you get out of the rolled thigh
position, just reform again.
Something bad that could happen when
the hip isn't rotated inward, is the ankle rounds outwards, even though it
may look like the thigh and knee are fairly well placed.
Or if the thigh and hip are not rotated
at all like in that first position, you will have to grip with
your thigh and knee to keep contact with the saddle.
Have someone help you into this position
the first few times. That way you can concentrate on your body and what the
difference feels like.
Make sure your feet are pointed straight
forward with the ankle more wrapped around the barrel rather than the ankle bone