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To correct riding by balancing the upper body with the hands on the mouth of the horse: practise exercises on a lunge line. Riding with no hands, performing these exercises. Fold hands across the chest; hold arms straight in the air above the head; hold arms straight out to the sides; place arms behind the back (will really help to keep the rider behind the motion~!); place hands on hips; turn body 45 degrees and swing arms in rotation....reverse and turn the opposite angle; put hands on back of head; extend arms straight ahead at shoulder height. Practise these at the walk, then trot, then canter. Each gait will improve the upper body strength as you gradually progress the gait. Once you can do these easily, then add first one, then two, then three, finally four trotting poles; eventually progressing to cavalletti's or small 1' to 2' jumps; still on the lunge line.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|