Riding Needs A New Word


Awareness of the outside world. Busy weekend. Riding clinic, which you will hear about at great length. American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, which you will hear about eventually. Focus has been inward.

Riding needs a word for Stop Being Stiff.

We need a way to get a rider more in tune with the horse, generally in regard to holding the reins.

We need a word that conveys …

Don’t change the length of your rein.

Don’t change the amount of your grip.

Don’t change your posture or hand position or anything.

Change nothing.

Just …

Stop riding like you are made out of wood.

Theory says to use positive terminology.

Wrong: Don’t lean forward.

Right: Sit back.

So we need a positive word or phrase that means don’t be stiff.

Relax – carries undertones of flopping down on the couch to chill out.

Soften your hands – usually equals loose reins. I, for one, will fling my reins at the horse with the slightest provocation.

We need a way to say that everything you are doing right now is wonderful, just put some grease in your elbows.

I know a rider who had astounding heavy hands. Yet, their hands are so unstiff that the horses think, ‘Well, hmm, okay, I can deal with this.’

The thesaurus has failed me.

Update. My vocab may have failed me but you have not. [Don’t Drop The Puppy, And Other Words To Yell In The Warm Up Ring, A Follow-Up Post]


7 thoughts on “Riding Needs A New Word

  1. Hmm. I feel like this ‘made out of wood’ state can be found in other situations… (at least for me). Maybe it’s the difference between holding a stack of plates or the line when water skiing, and how one has to hold a kitten or puppy? ‘Soften’ or ‘relax’ too much and you drop them, too tight or ‘stable’ and they squirm or scratch you, lean forward and you both might end up splayed on the ground.

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