Apologies for the late posting – I’ve had a super busy day!
Thursday’s Tuesday’s Tip!
Seat series part 4 – sitting trot 2
This tip will suggest some exercises to improve your sitting trot. First off, how to work out which muscles are being used and what the movement is. Find a wall, and do what is called a “wall sit”, you don’t have to do this for long so don’t worry! And you don’t have to be at a full 90degree angle. What you do need to do is get yourself into a wall sit, and focus on your lower back. You will notice that there is a gap between your lower back and the wall. This is less obvious for men than women, but it is still there. Now try and get your lower back to touch the wall as well. You’ll notice your hips tilt, your core becomes even more engaged and your buttocks tuck under slightly. Now relax your lower back away from the wall. This movement of getting your lower back to touch and then not touch the wall is the movement required for sitting trot! Practice this as many times as you like – and remind yourself of it if you have a bad sitting trot session.
Work a little in walk and focus on your seat bones and the movement they make. This movement is similar in trot. Your seat bones can do a lot – slowing them slows your horse, stopping them helps to stop. So make sure in your sitting trot that they move!
Trot poles – set up a set of 4-6 trot poles (I usually say 6 or more, but this is a rider exercise) and work your horse over them in rising trot, then try going over the poles in sitting trot. Many riders tense up and bounce over the poles due to the increased hind end activity and extra bounce created by the poles. This is an excellent way to work on your sitting, by emphasising the movement, focus on breathing, on relaxing, and really going with the movement.
Focus on your lower leg. Many riders allow their lower leg to drift forwards in sitting trot, so make a conscious effort to open your hip and push your leg back along your horse’s body. You should feel that your seat becomes more secure, your feeling of your seat bones should increase, and your leg should feel longer. Remember to keep weight in your heels.
As always, work without stirrups will help, but I find lots of riders can do sitting trot with no stirrups well, but struggle to sit to the trot well with their stirrups. All of these exercises should help with this.
If you would like more tips on sitting trot, do let me know in the comments and they might appear in a bonus seat series tip!
Please like, share, and comment to let other people know and potentially help them too 🙂