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Re: [RC] was shadow rolls, now, riding the "big spook" - Ericka Nelson

well said, ed.  when i first took up riding, seven years ago, i thought i had a pretty good seat.  well, i did.  i just had not been shown how to use my legs, so i came off frequently at every little spook and shy.  i now ride with my calves securely glued to artie.  he is spooking less.  maybe my legs on his sides gives him comfort and security or maybe it gives me comfort and security so i'm more confident so he's more confident, etc.  you get the picture.  and the balls of my feet are also heavy in my stirrups, as you said.
arties' last big spook was a 180 at a big rock on a windy day.  i rode it out and scolded him and off we trotted!  what a great feeling.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, November 05, 2004 11:07 AM
Subject: [RC] was shadow rolls, now, riding the "big spook"

ok, i have read about a lot of y'all getting dumped when your horse does the big spook.  i have a couple of ideas about working the big spook out of a horse, but i am not done with the experiments yet.  i will share when i am done.
in the meantime,  if you are getting dumped a lot due to the big spook,  be thinking about your body position on the horse, center of gravity, etc.  if you know your horse is capable of the big spook,  put more weight down on the balls of your feet when you are riding.  i work with lots of young horses, and have to expect the unexpected.  i probably put about 20-25% of my weight in the stirrups when the horse is walking, and that percentage goes up as the speed of the horse goes up.   too much weight on your seat puts you in a more vulnerable position to be unseated.  also, if your feet are too far back, and your horse spooks, you are more likely to get dumped.   another thing,  if you find that you are trying to hold on with your legs, especially your knees, then you dont have enough weight down in the stirrups.  until we cure the big spook, for safety's sake, learn how to ride it.       ed

[RC] was shadow rolls, now, riding the "big spook", Ed Kilpatrick