Training the Mind of the Horse and Rider

Training the Mind of the Horse and Rider
Click on Logo (Original artwork by Lanie Frick for Messick Quarter Horses. Not permitted to be copied)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Balancing the Body: Head, Shoulders and Middle

Day 1

Balancing the Body: Head

As I continue to move boxes to reopen my tack store for 2 months, I am a little sore today. My neck is a little stiff and my shoulders hurt a little last night. As I laid in bed last night, trying to find a comfortable spot, I thought about how I could balance my body. Centered Riding exercises can help in all areas of your life, not just riding.I decided to lay on my back, so there was equal pressure on both shoulders, with my head straight on the pillow.

I balanced my head, tipping it back and forth a little, trying to find that balance spot where my neck wasn't as sore. and it worked. I found a comfortable spot and went to sleep. This morning, I'm constantly rebalancing my head to find that spot where my neck isn't sore.

So as you're sitting there, or go ahead and stand up, what body area feels a little off?

Can you rebalance it by tipping back and forth or putting more weight there,then go back and forth, from too much tipping or weight to too little, trying to find that neutral place? How does it feel after you rebalance?When you go back to continue to do whatever you were doing, does your rebalancing of your body make a difference? Play with this and let me know. Next time you ride, take the time to rebalance each body part and let me know how you feel. Start with your head, and it will make a difference! You will be looking up at least 2" higher. Even stop and do your head now. Look at a spot, remember that spot, then rebalance your head by tipping it back and forth, less and less, to find that neutral spot. Remember to go sideways also. I usually start sideways, then do the chin up and down last.

Let me know!

Day 2

Balancing the Body: Shoulders

hmmmm... does this sound hard? Think about how stiff our shoulders get? If I'm tense, my shoulders are always tense. When I'm tense, I may roll my shoulders back to loosen them, but I have never balanced them. Until now. Once again,with moving tack store boxes, my joints are letting me know that I'm not as young as I used to be, and I keep doing the things I always used to do - bymyself. So after the 3rd day of loading boxes by myself, and having a little bit of help unloading, my knees and shoulders are letting me know that I'm older. Thank you very much!

So today, I balanced my shoulders. I move them forward and backward, finding that neutral spot. I lift them up and down, finding that neutral spot. I roll them backward and forward, finding that neutral spot. Moving those shoulders help to loosen them up. Moving them into the neutral position keeps them from being stiff. When I go to bed, I'll be moving my shoulders, finding both that neutral spot, and that comfortable spot! What area of your body stiffens up when you ride, and what do you do to loosen that area?

Day 3

Balancing the Body: Middle

Head, shoulders, now our middle. Acutally, it's the whole body! Where is our upper body when we ride. Forward? and over the horse's shoulders? Making the shoulders sore? Backwards? and over the horse's loins? Making the back sore?

Or in the middle? Over the horse's center of gravity?

To balance the middle, lean forward and then leaned backward. Lean a little less each time, until you settle into neutral. You are balanced. Relax. No really, relax your whole body. Sink down into the saddle, into the stirrups or irons. Relax your head, your shoulders, your middle, your thighs, your legs, your feet, your arms, your hands. Enjoy the feeling of being totally balanced with your body.

Embrace this feeling.

Embrace the feel!

Then enjoy the ride!

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