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All riders should aim for effective communication with their horse. With the use of your seat, legs, and hands, you can convey various signals. The rider can control, absorb, or follow the movement of their horse with their seat. Unfortunately, this concept can be confusing to beginner riders. Follow along!

How to Use Your Seat

Try these exercises to get in the habit of using your seat in combination with your hands and legs. Subtle signals will make your riding look effortless. 1. Walk Forward Breathe in and lighten your seat bones. Without tensing your back, stretch tall in the saddle and slightly tighten the buttock muscles. Naturally, your thighs and hips will open. Be wryly of leaning too far back with your upper body or arching your lower back. Your leg aid can support your seat and encourage the forward movement. 2. Coming to a Halt When asking for the halt, exhale and sink your seat bones into the saddle. You should also shift your weight back, but be careful not to slouch or lean with your upper body. Furthermore, your hips should stop following the movement and your leg pressure should cease. Your core muscles will help to immobilize your seat. 3. Adjustments Within the Gait The seat is also helpful in increasing and decreasing the tempo within each gait. Swinging hips can encouragement movement when applied with a leg aid. On the other hand, you can slow the movement of your hips to decrease the speed. This is where you ability to feel your horse’s movement is tested. You’ll need to learn how much and little to apply to get your desired results. 4. Turning Through a Corner Use your seat and legs to guide your horse through turns and various figures. It can be helpful to practice this exercise on a square shape. When traveling to the right, open up your hip and leg on that side of your body. The opposite side should close slightly against your horse. Open the left side of your body when turning to the left. Good riding comes from a good seat! You’re on your way to better communication. Looking for more great advice? Head over to ‘Riding The Perfect Circle‘.