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Using Mirrors to Improve Your Horse Riding

April 16, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 144

Many equestrian disciplines require the horse to work in a certain position or outline such as dressage, western etc. When teaching your horse to work correctly or when learning yourself, it is hard when you are unable to see how it looks and compare this to what it should look like. Many people will video their lessons or schooling sessions then play this back to make alterations for the next session. This is restrictive as it does not allow you to make instant changes and feel the results so you have an ongoing case of trial and error. An ideal solution to this is to have mirrors fitted in your arena or school.

By having mirrors in your school it will allow you to check the position of yourself and the horse constantly and improve your performance without the need to have someone on the ground. Mirrors therefore can help with independence and make the rider feel more confident when schooling alone. As a competitor it enables you to see what the judge sees which is especially important in disciplines such as dressage.

When learning new movements such as lateral work, the mirrors can help to show you if the horse is in the correct position. When positioned correctly, it will encourage the rider to look up at their reflection as opposed to looking down at the horse.

When fitting mirrors it is important to remember that unless fitted correctly and made from sturdy stable materials they could potentially be very dangerous. It is important to purchase them from a reputable company that specialise in mirrors for use with horses, as they will understand that they need to be able to withstand horses potentially hitting or kicking them.

When riding your horse in an arena with mirrors for the first time, bear in mind that they do not necessarily know what mirrors are and there is the chance they could be spooked by a horse suddenly appearing alongside them. Allow them time to get used to the idea before attempting any training in front of them.

Training is incredibly important if you wish to improve your skills as a rider. The more time spent practicing, the better you will become. With the use of mirrors, your level of training increases as it allows you to actually see where you are doing things right and where you could improve. For those who wish to improve their dressage skills, mirrors can be a very useful addition.

Erin is a freelance interior designer and in her free time she enjoys going out to the countryside, whilst wearing her equestrian clothing to go riding. For more information on the issues raised, visit Anything Equine.

Source: EzineArticles
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