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In her informal yet informative style, clinician and equine behavior expert Jessica Jahiel provides solutions to all of the problems that riders can encounter. She presents real life situations and addresses them in comprehensive detail, covering everything fromthe technical aspects of riding to physical and emotional issues, tack and clothing, finding a good instructor, preparing forshows, and much more. The problems presented in this book will be familiar to riders of all levels of experience and in all styles ...
In her informal yet informative style, clinician and equine behavior expert Jessica Jahiel provides solutions to all of the problems that riders can encounter. She presents real life situations and addresses them in comprehensive detail, covering everything fromthe technical aspects of riding to physical and emotional issues, tack and clothing, finding a good instructor, preparing forshows, and much more. The problems presented in this book will be familiar to riders of all levels of experience and in all styles of riding.
Foreword by Sally Swift
Part I: Mount Up and Ride
1 Getting On and Off
I'm Uncomfortable Mounting from the Ground
• My Horse Won't Stand Still for Mounting
• Holding the Reins and Saddle while Mounting
• Dismounting: Should I Jump Off or Slide Off?
• Emergency Dismounts
2 Staying On: What's Your Position?
Rider Leg Position
• What Is Correct Knee Position?
• Rider's Tight Upper Body
• I Lean Sideways, and My Horse Does Too
3 At the Walk
How Should I Move My Arms at the Walk?
• Soft Hands at the Walk
• Young Horse Won't Walk, He Jogs
• Lengthening a Short Walk Stride
• My Horse Anticipates Walk-Trot Transitions
4 At the Trot
Help! Can't Master Posting Trot!
• How Do I Learn Diagonals?
• I Can't Sit the Trot
• Please Provide Sitting Trot Image
• First Lengthenings at Trot and Canter
• What Is Correct Trot Lengthening?
• Trot Lengthening or Medium Trot?
5 At the Canter
• My Horse Won't Canter
• Problems with Right Lead
• Smooth Canter Depart
• Rider's Leg Swinging at Canter
• Better Canter for Rider and Horse
6 About Jumping
Explain Crest Releases, Please
• I Can't "See My Distance"
• Losing Stirrups over Jumps
• Learning to "Fold" over Jumps
• Hunt Seat Compared to Cross-Country Position
• Strong Legs for Cross-Country Jumping?
7 On the Trail
Trail Riding in Balance
• Galloping on Trail Ride
• Riding Down Hills
• Essential Equine Trail Skills
Part II: Physical and Emotional Issues
8 Figuring Out Horse and Rider Size
Is This Horse Too Small for Me?
• "Outgrowing" a Horse
• Finding the Right Size Horse
• Horse-to-Rider Size
• Can My Horse Carry My Weight?
• How Heavy Is Too Heavy to Ride?
9 When Your Body Doesn't Cooperate
• Sore Knees
• Collapsing Chest
• Swinging Legs and Stirrups
• Strengthening Rider's Legs
• Why Don't My Toes Point Forward?
• Bracing in the Saddle
• Too Much Ballet Turnout on Horseback
• Rider with Painful Stitch
• Riding with a Bad Back
10 Facing Fear
Afraid to Ride
• Afraid of Horses
• Help, I am a "Fraidy Cat"!
• Rider Confidence Loss — Whose Fault?
• Dealing with Loss of Confidence
• Restoring Rider Confidence
11 Helping Your Horse withHis Problems
Horse Too Sensitive to the Leg
• Retraining anEx-Racehorse
• Nervous Horse or Brat?
• My Horses' Mouths Can't Tolerate Bits
• My Horse Can't Do What I Want toDo
12 Thinking Right about Horses
Horse Is Always Testing the Bit
• Talking to My Horse
• Confused about Seesawing the Bit
• Is Seesawing the Bit Always Wrong?
• Letting Others Ride My Horse
• Do Horses Enjoy Being Ridden?
• Horse "Feeling His Oats"
• Is It Always the Rider?
13 Thinking Right about Your Riding
• Finding the Right Horse
• Inconsistent, Sad Rider
• Dressage Rider's Potential
• Moving Up a Level in Eventing
• "Just" a Pleasure Rider
• Horse Too Fit for Wimpy Me
Part III: Tack and Clothing
14 Bits, Reins, and Contact
Correct Way to Hold Reins
• Acceptance of Contact
• Change Bit for More Control?
• Bit Pressure and Western Bits
• Asking My Horse to Stretch Forward and Down
15 Whips and Spurs and How to Use Them
How to Use a Whip
• When Can I Start Wearing Spurs?
• Does a Whip Equal Abuse?
• Spurs, Western Riding, and Hollywood
16 When Your Tack Gets in the Way
Finding a Saddle That Fits
• Stirrup Length for Dressage: I'm Confused* Safety Stirrups for Adults
• Special Stirrups for Painful Knees and Ankles
• Reins for Hands That Won't Close
• Longer Reins for a Long-Necked Horse
17 When Your Clothes Get in the Way
Pain from New Boots
• Putting Folds into Tall Boots
• Riding Jeans
• Still Bouncing with Two Sports Bras
• Comfort for Male Riders
• Saddle Sores
• Seat Bone Pain when Riding
• Helmet Fitting
• Wearing a Hat under a Blanket
Part IV: Getting Better All the Time
18 Instructors and Lessons
Adult Beginner Lessons
• Questions to Ask Prospective Instructor
• My Instructor Hates My Horse
• Same Lesson Over and Over
• "Jerk and Shout" Instructor
• New Instructor, New Ways
• Riding Lesson Etiquette?
• Should Beginners Ride Many Different Horses?
• Weekly, Biweekly, or Monthly Lessons?
• More Lessons = More Confusion
• Old, Scared Lady Wants to Ride
• Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced?
19 Going to Clinics
"Not Good Enough" for a Clinic?
• Clinic Costs
• Clinics for "the Rest of Us"
• Clinician's Comment on Riding Corners
• Should the Clinician Ride Your Horse?
• Learning from Watching
20 Going to Competitions
I Want to Show but I'm Terrified
• Getting Help at Shows
• I'm Never in the Ribbons — Why?
• Interpreting Dressage Scores
• Organizing a Horse Show
21 You Are Not Alone
Can't Let My Friends See Me Ride
• Dressage for Occasional Rider
• Frustrated Adult Beginner
• Riding Clubs
• Limited Riding Time during the Winter
• "My Way Is the Only Way"
• Ground Work and Riding — You Need Both
• Am I Letting My Horse Down?
Appendix: How to Build a Mounting Block