Horseback riding isn’t as easy at it looks! But like they say, “practice makes perfect.” The more you ride the horse, the better you get. But let’s be realistic, you may not be able to get on the saddle as often as you’d like. Luckily, there are other “on the ground” exercises you can do to help you improve your horse riding skills.
Cardio Horseback riding is more of an exercise than you may think. In fact, it is a great form of cardio. Therefore, any form of cardio exercise can help you improve your horseback riding skills. Walking, running, rowing, and bike riding are just a few cardio exercises you can add into your routine. If you just can’t ride your horse today, consider going on a run or hitting the gym as an alternative.
Pilates Pilates is in fact a great form of exercise to strengthen your core and improve your balance. The essential aspects of horseback riding are balance and good core strength. Pilates also has the ability to improve your posture, helping you sit up straighter on your horse and improve your riding skills.
Lengthen your achilles tendon Many individuals come across the issue of lifting their heels when horseback riding. This causes balance to be off and can make the feet slip down in the stirrups. A shortened achilles tendon is often the cause of this problem. Therefore, you should try to lengthen your achilles tendon. This can be done by standing at the edge of a step, so that your heels hang down, and gently pushing your heels down. Holding this position for 15 seconds repeatedly can help lengthen and strengthen the achilles tendon.
Groom your horse Horse grooming can be a great be a great full body workout. Brushing and grooming your horse can help work out your arms.
Warm up on your horse Just like with most other exercises, it is a good idea to warm up before you go straight into horseback riding. The following are some ideas to help you warm up while riding your pony or horse. These should be done while you walk your horse to help them warm up with you:
- When riding your horse, remove your feet from the stirrups; using your hips, lift your legs as high as possible from the saddle. Hold the position for several seconds and then drop your legs. Repeat this a few times.
- As your horse is walking, remove your feet from the stirrups. Using your hips, swing your legs forwards and backwards. Your right leg should be forwards while your left leg is back.
Miami Equestrian Club offers a full services of boarding and horse training in Miami.