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Trade your gym membership for time in the saddle! Riders will be happy to know that saddling up and going for a ride will improve their fitness. Riding is quite the workout, as many of you know. So, there’s no need to feel guilty! You can work on your health and do something you love.

Reap these four fitness benefits when you saddle up…

1. Strength Maybe you’ve heard that equestrians have “legs of steel”. The truth is riding requires the use of your glutes, hamstrings, and quads. You’re constantly flexing and tightening the muscles when you change gaits, directions, and perform various maneuvers. Furthermore, your core and arm muscles will also experience strengthening from horseback riding. 2. Balance Riders quickly learn that they must sit centered in the saddle with their weight evenly distributed. If you sway or lean to one side, you risk falling off or throwing your horse off balance. Good riders know to sit tall and upright! You can test your balance by riding bareback or without stirrups. 3. Stamina Most riders are relentless! They push through the exhaustion and get the job done. Loping for long stretches, running barrels, and posting the trot are just a few of the activities that can exhaust a rider quickly. It’s a good thing that the body adapts. You’ll find yourself riding harder and longer the more time you spend in the saddle. 4. Flexibility When in the correct riding position, you stretch your heels down, shoulders back, head up, and back upright. This requires a good deal of flexibility. At first, this position will seem awkward, but in time it’ll become second nature. Your muscles will have to remain loose and supple in order to follow your horse’s movement. Trying sitting the jog with stiff hips…. it won’t feel good. Who says you need a gym? Go horseback riding! Try this when out of the saddle: A Series Of Fitness Exercises For Equestrians!