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Thread: Balance problem

  1. #1
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    Default Balance problem

    This is a little problem I am facing...

    I have got to clue you in a little with my past in order for this to make sense otherwise you may not be able to help me out with the initial problem.

    As some of you know I am deaf and along with this I have had a balance problem all my life. Now for the most part the balance problem isn't there. But every so often it used to catch me out and my balance just gave way. Only for a second or two. This did to be hair raising at times especially when on a ladder or a motorbike.

    But this is what gets me, when I used to be on a motorbike, my balance was perfect pretty much and I had trust in myself that if anything did happen I could wrestle the bike back or that my riding would be perfect. To those who have ridden motorbikes that bit would probably make some sense.

    Since my cochlear operation - not only is there more hearing but I also have a little bit more balance, which in itself is a good thing. Yet I am having a little issue and even though I haven' ridden for a few weeks due to private matters and a lack of a car. This issue is going over and over in my head and I want it resolved.

    When I have confidence in myself to do a rising trot, for the first few seconds everything is there, and I can do it, and moving in synch with the horse. Then *boom* I am over thinking and worrying about my balance and possibility of falling off. ( The falling off part is stupid, because falling off is not an issue with me, it's part and parcel of life. Even more stupid, when I am on top of Ruby... as she is the safest ride you could ever ask for to learn this all over again)

    So any tips from anyone who can give me a bit of advice in how to overcome this issue - and make it easier on myself... Or if you have a balance problem *how did you overcome this bit?*

    I hope I have explained this well
    Let me enlighten you, this is the way I pray...

  2. #2
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    Hm, I'm probably not one to give advice on something like this but the first thing that popped into my head was bareback. I know trot would probably be quite painful for a man but even walk should help you gain a little confidence and balance?

  3. #3
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    Robyn,

    Bareback is not a problem, as long as there is a bareback pad on the horse. Otherwise depending on the horse then it *ahem* could be a problem he he he. I think that is definitely one way to overcome this and learn to trust myself and the horse when riding. I hadn't thought of that actually to be honest with you. That is something to talk with Rubysmum about when I buy a car and get back with Ruby.

    That definitely could be used as a tool to get over the lack of confidence issue. If I fall of it's not a problem, you just have to get back on again as it's all part and parcel of riding. Obviously you don't want to fall off, but you know what I mean.

    Thanks for that, that is some food for thought there.
    Let me enlighten you, this is the way I pray...

  4. #4
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    Hopefully Ruby being Ruby would be very comfortable I imagine, if you were closer I'd offer Phil! I had to spend all summer bareback and my confidence (and Phil's) improved greatly, as did my balance (I hope - I cringe looking back at videos when I first started lol). You're right about the falling off but I think you will be fine, go at your own speed, just push yourself a little more each time and remember you're only human!

    Not at all, hope things improve

  5. #5
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    Travs, I cannot imagine your situation so I dont know if I'll be any help, but when i help people with their riding, if they start to lose balance I give them two pieces of advice:

    1. Look up and ahead
    2. Keep your toes in front of your nose

    Not sure if this will help, but I hope so!
    "The Horse is never wrong."


  6. #6
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    Have you tried getting a gym ball? My balance is shocking but doing physio exercises for my knees on a gym ball has helped. Plus if you do wobble and fall off it's not as far as from the back of a horse lol

  7. #7

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    I suspect you're still adjusting to the changes. You've probably got used to how different things are in your everyday life, but since you haven't ridden much, you still have some transitioning to do on the horse.

    I think I would spend some time in 'standing trot'. Go back to the half-point stance, bum out, straight back, eyes forward, but you have the horse's neck to balance on with your hands. Get this established again, so that you can happily stay balanced in that position indefinitely. Then start re-teaching yourself rising trot from the 'up' point rather than the 'down'. So you trot around 'standing' (which is really more like crouching or jumping position) and every few strides just sit and let the horse bounce you up again. You can't get unbalanced because everything stays the same apart from the bend in your leg. Just gently sit, and bounce up again. Stay standing for a few strides, get the balance point re-established and then sit again momentarily.

    I would build it up from there. Gradually let yourself get more and more solid nad then start working on bringing the shoulders back and getting into a more upright position. I think because you've had a major change in your balance - or your balance processing - your body and muscle memory is just a little disorientated, and starting over with rising trot from the beginning would make the most of this opportunity to learn it even better this time !
    Oh good grief, BAN FOXHUNTING ALREADY, this incessant drivel about what colour tie to wear makes my eyes bleed.

  8. #8
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    come and ride fudge bareback, he is very comfy, has a lovely smooth trot and is far too wide you to possibly lose your balance and fall off (if you did you would just gracefully roll off his hippo sides and its not far to the ground!) flopsy on the other hand i would not suggest bareback for a male rider, shes as bouncy as tigger!
    Fjord Horses - "The golden cobs with the golden heart"

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robyn View Post
    Hopefully Ruby being Ruby would be very comfortable I imagine, if you were closer I'd offer Phil! I had to spend all summer bareback and my confidence (and Phil's) improved greatly, as did my balance (I hope - I cringe looking back at videos when I first started lol). You're right about the falling off but I think you will be fine, go at your own speed, just push yourself a little more each time and remember you're only human!

    Not at all, hope things improve
    Ruby is quite comfortable actually... Bless her, she looks at me with those eyes thinking 'OH MY GOD SAVE ME NOW!!!' and puts up with me for the hour bless her. She really is good as gold and does everything that is asked. She's patient and quite forgiving and that is more than I could ask for.

    Quote Originally Posted by tandp View Post
    Travs, I cannot imagine your situation so I dont know if I'll be any help, but when i help people with their riding, if they start to lose balance I give them two pieces of advice:

    1. Look up and ahead
    2. Keep your toes in front of your nose

    Not sure if this will help, but I hope so!
    Even small advice like that does help, even though I know it, it is good to hear it again and remember it. The fact that you took time to post it, is appreciated and to me any advice is good advice... As long as it doesn't say 'Ride a rodeo horse and you will soon learn to trust your balance or you WILL definitely be on the floor!! Thanks again TandP

    Quote Originally Posted by flickaz View Post
    Have you tried getting a gym ball? My balance is shocking but doing physio exercises for my knees on a gym ball has helped. Plus if you do wobble and fall off it's not as far as from the back of a horse lol
    That is definitely worth a try on flickaz! The fact that the balance ball will display my balance problems with ease and learning how to get used to that with various exercises on it, is worth a try. It would probably be a helpful tool if anything. I do like that.

    Thanks for that flickaz! Tis appreciated
    Let me enlighten you, this is the way I pray...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by WonderPony View Post
    I suspect you're still adjusting to the changes. You've probably got used to how different things are in your everyday life, but since you haven't ridden much, you still have some transitioning to do on the horse.

    I think I would spend some time in 'standing trot'. Go back to the half-point stance, bum out, straight back, eyes forward, but you have the horse's neck to balance on with your hands. Get this established again, so that you can happily stay balanced in that position indefinitely. Then start re-teaching yourself rising trot from the 'up' point rather than the 'down'. So you trot around 'standing' (which is really more like crouching or jumping position) and every few strides just sit and let the horse bounce you up again. You can't get unbalanced because everything stays the same apart from the bend in your leg. Just gently sit, and bounce up again. Stay standing for a few strides, get the balance point re-established and then sit again momentarily.

    I would build it up from there. Gradually let yourself get more and more solid nad then start working on bringing the shoulders back and getting into a more upright position. I think because you've had a major change in your balance - or your balance processing - your body and muscle memory is just a little disorientated, and starting over with rising trot from the beginning would make the most of this opportunity to learn it even better this time !
    You have pretty much hit on the problem with your first paragraph WonderPony. Even though it's been a long while since the op, I am still adjusting to the changes of the balance issue. I have over time, got used to how much different having that little bit of extra balance can be. It sounds like I was a drunk and couldn't walk in a straight line for the life of me, which it wasn't Thank goodness he he. It was little things like quickly turning round or turning a corner or climbing over the gate. Where the balance could catch you out with surprise. Nothing too bad but sometimes the surprise caught me out badly and I'd have no choice but have arms flailing and fall to the ground. This would happen on climbing over the gates when people were around!! Ahem

    But you are right in the fact that as I haven't ridden much I still have some transitioning to do on the horse. I guess I must not let that bother me and accept that it will come when I do more riding over time and things will get better. So really more riding/more patience is the key in one regards.

    I think you have made a good point in regards to the standing trot - go back to that a little bit more. Ruby'smum has made me do a little bit of this and it did help admittedly. I guess perhaps a little bit more time on the 'standing trot' is needed in order to gain my confidence back again. It is worth a thought as so far Ruby'smum has done a wonderful job so far and as I pointed out - the balance thing is a hit and miss. Both she and Ruby have been so patient with me. Which I am thankful for, otherwise it would be a bit more frustrating on my part.

    Again you hit the point in the last paragraph and this is the issue for me really. That my 'my balance processing' is what's causing the problem. The body and muscle memory is well... disorientated. I know I can do it - cause it's there and then it's like a little relapse and whoa it's all disorientated and gone. A little frustrating, but I know it's there and can be done. It is going to be a gradual process and something that may take a little bit longer to sort out than most people. Again I know it's achievable as I can do it...

    Thank you for taking out the time to post and giving out some advice... It's appreciated and it has been a help, knowing I am going in the right direction, with a few things that needs to be worked on and tackled. Thanks again WonderPony
    Let me enlighten you, this is the way I pray...

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