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Pre-ride mobilisation. Why and how.

I work with a lot of riders. One of the things I notice consistently, is that very few of them embark on a movement regime prior to riding. There are a host of reasons why doing this is important and will help set you up for a better riding experience. We don’t move our bodies any where near as much as they are capable of.  We are often sitting for long periods and compromising important postural muscles in the process. When we ride, the position through the pelvis is fairly fixed. Yet we require softness through the joints and the capacity to absorb the forces from the horse through our bodies. Rigidity, stiffness and a lack of suppleness will make this exceptionally hard. Furthermore, creating this habit of off horse mobilisation, is hugely important as a way for the rider to become more in tune with their body before they ride. Self-assessment, body awareness, proprioception. All these things can be heightened when exploring these pre-ride exercises.

You can balance on one leg, use the mounting block as a rest for your heel to stretch your hamstrings. You can move through some deep squats to mobilise the hip joints and build awareness of your sitting bones. You can side lunge to lengthen your adductors, add rotation to open your chest and free your ribcage. And you only need a few minutes for it to make an impact.

Here’s a brief video of me and Hewie working through some hip exercises.

Below you’ll find a a further video explanation of the significance of off horse training for the rider.