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Thread: Shortening stirrups help leg position?

  1. #1

    Default Shortening stirrups help leg position?

    My leg positioning is getting drastically worse, I've gone form having pretty good legs to appalling lower legs!

    They've gone from this:


    To this :

    http://www.chrislax.co.uk/2013/Richm.../RC1_2351.html

    I was looking at my Xc pictures and comparing my leg position to the rider before me and her stirrups look a lot shorter than mine, do you think this would help?
    Does anyone have any exercises I could do to help improve them?

    I feel balanced when I'm jumping, another thing I was thinking could it be my saddle causing my legs to swing back? I've gone from a GP (1st pic) to a saddle with huge knee blocks?

  2. #2
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    What does your Instructor say? It could just be a bad habit creeping in, but I doubt the saddle would make legs swing back like thatas it is below the knee that is swinging back.
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  3. #3
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    I'd have thought a jump saddle should make the leg more stable??

  4. #4
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    You look like you're leaning on your hands more in the second photo which would mean less weight is through your heel (you need your weight in your heel for a secure lower leg).
    I doubt it's your saddle, that shouldn't make you swing back from the knee, but you will need fairly short stirrups in a jump saddle because of the forward cut - just don't go so far short that you lose the effectiveness of your leg

    I'd try a bit of jumping without stirrups to help, just down small grids to start with. That should encourage the weight into your leg more!
    Whenever you feel like giving up, think of all the people who would love to see you fail.

  5. #5
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    Look at the angle of your upper body - on the 1st photo you are nicely in line with the neck but on the 2nd you look to be leaning further forward and there is more of an angle - not much but it's there.

    That will put your weight more forwards and cause your lower leg to move back to counteract it.

    As Stormy J says jump a grid but I'd say jump without reins as well as without stirrups (not at the same time) - drop your reins and fold your arms, will help you get into the habit of not going too far up the neck.

    Having said all that jumping isn't all about having a stable lower leg, it's about getting yourself back into a balanced position after the jumps, I look at some of the top SJ and some of their legs are all over the show but they are back in a balanced position within half a stride - are you still accomplishing that?

  6. #6

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    Okay, I'll be brave a try some small grids without reins/stirrups then!

    I don't feel unbalanced over a fence and 99% of the time I'm absolutely fine as soon as we are back on the ground, I find I'm worse for it SJ than XC.

    Madlady I definitely get what you are saying about my upper body positioning, like on this picture I dont feel as if I'm as much on top of his shoulders and my leg is better http://www.chrislax.co.uk/2013/Richmond%20Horse%20Trials%20August%202013/Sunday/BE100/Showjumping/11am/slides/RC1_2342.html

  7. #7
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    I seem to waver between excellent legs/seat and completely rubbish legs/seat so I feel your pain.

    I think saddle can and does make a massive difference, specifically calf block location/existence ... I also think stirrup length makes a difference ... and finally I think a season of hunting always puts me back where I should be for a few months before the bad habits start to creep in again!

    (These days I just seem to sit there doing nothing over fences and kinda stay straight. No clue why I do this, but my body has decided it wants to ... and my left shoulder has decided it can do what it wants and sadly my left hand seems to follow)



  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soot View Post

    (These days I just seem to sit there doing nothing over fences and kinda stay straight. No clue why I do this, but my body has decided it wants to ... and my left shoulder has decided it can do what it wants and sadly my left hand seems to follow)
    My left hand has an evil life of it's own too
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clava View Post
    My left hand has an evil life of it's own too
    Bet it doesn't have an exciting life like my, previously obedient and lovely soft left hand, which has allegedly developed the ability to not only hold the weight of an entire horse but also neck rein said horse back to the track when the left leg has taken the day off ... (or when the horses' entire left side has gone on strike .... funny how I can't shake the feeling this may all be somehow related ... hmmmm )



  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soot View Post
    Bet it doesn't have an exciting life like my, previously obedient and lovely soft left hand, which has allegedly developed the ability to not only hold the weight of an entire horse but also neck rein said horse back to the track when the left leg has taken the day off ... (or when the horses' entire left side has gone on strike .... funny how I can't shake the feeling this may all be somehow related ... hmmmm )
    Well actually that is exactly what it does! They must be related or swapping notes. Found out that my right thigh has to work a lot harder to correct what Evil Left is trying to make up for.

    (sorry OP to take this off track too a bit, but I guess it is about bodies not doing as we want them too, just a bit higher up).
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