BioRider Fitness

Riders in jumping disciplines (hunter/jumper/eventing) are always told not to lean up the horse’s neck before a jump or on the neck over a jump. Doing so puts the rider in a precarious position if the horse stops, and throws the horse off balance, which may cause his front end to hit the jump. Leaning up the neck may also lead to the hard-to-break habit of “ducking.”

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Everyone loses motivation from time to time, riders included. Motivation doesn’t come easy. Situations such as your horse going lame or being stuck at a training plateau for a long time can make any rider lose motivation. These are the times when you have to really push yourself. The only way to find motivation is to create it.

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By Bridget Braden-Olson

Something I never see at barns is a rider warming up before they get in the saddle. I get it – horse life is busy and very energy-consuming – but the body works better if it is properly warmed up.

Unless your schedule allows time for a full workout, rarely will you get more than ten minutes for a warm-up. I ride in the morning hours and there is seldom time for a long warm-up.

exercises for the horse rider, get fit for horse riding, exercise for the equestrian athlete, biorider fitness, bridget braden-olson

What is it about side planks that makes them so hard? If you’ve ever done them in your workout, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Whether you do them on the ground or with your feet in TRX straps, they are one of the most challenging exercises there is. Thankfully, there are several great modifications you can do to help make the side plank more or less challenging as you work up your strength and endurance.

exercises for the horse rider, get fit for horse riding, exercise for the equestrian athlete, biorider fitness, bridget braden-olson

Pelvic stability is a problem for many riders, and typically gets worse over time rather than better. It can be fixed by riding with even seat bones which increases pelvic strength, but various factors can contribute to uneven seat bones or an unbalanced pelvis.

exercises for the horse rider, get fit for horse riding, exercise for the equestrian athlete, biorider fitness, bridget braden-olson

In order to become a better rider, you need to spend time focusing on your own body. These exercises will help you educate your mind and body to find your centre, in order to improve your balance and communication with the horse.

exercises for the horse rider, get fit for horse riding, exercise for the equestrian athlete, biorider fitness, bridget braden-olson

Just like training a horse, taking your time to build the basics will make you stronger and fitter in the long run. We all know a strong foundation is the key to any horse’s training, and we’ve all been tempted to move a young horse up a few levels quicker than normal rather than taking the extra time to teach him all the basics, especially if he is talented and seems naturally ready to do upper level movements or jump bigger jumps.

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