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Horseback Riding 101

Learning to be a good rider is a combination of knowledge and learning how to be in your body in a way that helps you partner with a horse. In this section, I collect articles on both topics intended to build your knowledge to help you become a better, more responsive rider, as well as exercises to help introduce you to the body movements necessary for comfortable, confident horseback riding.

Simple Tips to End Horse Head Tossing and Throwing

  Has your horse or pony recently started tossing their head up in the air when you are riding? When horses start head tossing behavior, it often indicates one of a few things, which we will discuss in this article. Because head tossing can have a few causes, it may take some detective work to …

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5 Tips to Slow a Fast Horse & Control the Walk, Trot, or Canter Pace

Most horses have four main gaits: the walk, the trot, the canter (called a lope in Western riding), and the gallop. Within these gaits, horses have a huge variance- horses can be taught to trot or even lope as slow as other horses walk! The speed of each gait depends on many factors, just like …

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How to do a Sitting Trot: Exercises to Improve

Learning to sit the trot is something western rider must learn, and something most dressage riders dread! It’s the most difficult gait for most horseback riders to learn to ride, but our sitting trot tips are here to help. Below you’ll find a few easy exercises I picked up during training, competing, and teaching dressage …

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Horseback Riding Saddle Sores: Healing & Preventing

When people use the word saddle sores they might mean two different things: either sores that develop on riders due to sensitive skin being irritated during riding or sores that develop on a horses body underneath the saddle.   What are saddle sores and how do riders get them? Minor saddle sores are part of …

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Easy Tips to Tell When a Horse is Collected

Sometimes the technical terms and jargon used by horse owners and horseback riders can be confusing to beginners and those outside of the “horse world”. Recently, we’ve been exploring some of these concepts through a blog, and today we are going to talk about what it means to say a horse is “heavy on the …

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Is Dressage Unnatural? Dressage Movements at Liberty

    After competing in dressage for years, one statement I’ve heard occasionally- especially in the midwest- is that dressage is unnatural for horses. Proponents of this view feel that the way in which horses are “forced” to move during a dressage competition are not natural, and that such movements would never be performed by …

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Tacking Up A Horse: What it Means & How to Do It

The equestrian world has a countless amount of its own specific language, one of the most common confusing statements is “tacking up” and “untacking”. This phrase, common jargon of horse people and used across essentially all disciplines of riding, can be especially confusing. People who work around horses often have a bad habit of using …

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Riding the Canter: Tips To Cue, Relax, Correct, and Enjoy

  The canter can be a hard gait to learn, and the speed that accompanies the gait can bring anxiety for many beginning riders. In this article, we’ll talk about: cuing your horse to canter relaxing as you transition into the canter sitting correctly in the saddle so you feel secure and connected how to know …

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