My hands move up and down when I rise and I don’t know how to keep them still

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7 November 2017
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Essex
So I’ve been riding a while but my main fault is that I when I rise my hands ever so slightly move up and down with my body. My instructor has told me to keep them still but I just didn’t know how!! Thank you for any help x
 

milliepops

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Just telling someone to keep their hands still is pretty unhelpful :rolleyes: it tends to make people stiffen up and then you'll find your hands move even more.

To have still hands in rising trot you need to have elasticity in your arms and particularly your elbows so trying to be *more still* will be counter productive.
Are you riding your own horse or at a riding school? Something that can be helpful to get the idea of how to keep your arms soft but your hands in one place, is to hook your little fingers through a neckstrap or breastplate (or even a loop of mane if it's long enough). Then you will feel where they need to stay because if they start to bob upwards you have something to pull against, so you'll notice it.

The other thing that can be useful is working without reins (e.g. on the lunge) to do exercises where you move your arms deliberately and independently from your body while you are trotting. This helps to develop an independent seat. Would lunge lessons be an option?
 
Joined
7 November 2017
Messages
23
Location
Essex
Just telling someone to keep their hands still is pretty unhelpful :rolleyes: it tends to make people stiffen up and then you'll find your hands move even more.

To have still hands in rising trot you need to have elasticity in your arms and particularly your elbows so trying to be *more still* will be counter productive.
Are you riding your own horse or at a riding school? Something that can be helpful to get the idea of how to keep your arms soft but your hands in one place, is to hook your little fingers through a neckstrap or breastplate (or even a loop of mane if it's long enough). Then you will feel where they need to stay because if they start to bob upwards you have something to pull against, so you'll notice it.

The other thing that can be useful is working without reins (e.g. on the lunge) to do exercises where you move your arms deliberately and independently from your body while you are trotting. This helps to develop an independent seat. Would lunge lessons be an option?
thank you that’s reallt helpful! I keep my own horse at the school but tend to ride others as he’s off work currently but have never had the problem on him.. I’m starting to wonder if it’s because they’re bigger but I’ll try your suggestions definitely :)
 

milliepops

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if they are bigger horses, are they also bigger striding and therefore possibly making you rise a bit higher than you were before? In which case I would say the above still stands but I would add in trying to keep your rising as small as possible, just absorbing the movement of the horse and not adding to it ;)
 

soloequestrian

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14 January 2009
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Think about the movement your hands are making and then do the opposite, so if they are coming up with your body think about pushing them down each time your rise - once you get the balance right they will be magically still!
 

alexomahony

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12 January 2015
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333
A really small helpful exercise it just putting the tip of your little finger on the front of your saddle - then your hands can't move. In canter, I struggle keeping my outside hand steady so I do this when warming up just to remind myself to keep it still.
 

oldie48

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15 April 2013
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The video is really helpful, worth watching. We were looking at rising trot in my equipilates class yesterday, using a gym ball to bounce up and down as if we were trotting and keeping our hands still by using our elbows. Wished I'd seen this vid before as tbh i wasn't sure what we were being asked to do and tended to lock my elbows and stiffen my arms, which I don't think I do when I ride! (or perhaps, I do).
 
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