Horse Riding

Horse Riding with Alexander Technique.

  • Gain freedom from repeated tension for yourself and your horse.
  • Connect deeply with your horse through a soft, supple seat.
  • Ride effortlessly, easily cooperating with the natural design of yourself and your horse.

Carl Hester, Olympic Gold Medallist says “The Alexander Technique is one of the most valuable tools a rider can possess.” —  British Dressage Team,  London 2012 Olympics

Who can benefit from Alexander…

Whether you ride horses just for fun, for Dressage or Eventing  riders increasingly recognizing that a heightened awareness of their own bodies has a dramatic effect on their horses.  What are you aware of when riding?

Benchmarks to look for while riding a horse or competing..

  • To be well seated on the horse so that both horse and rider are one;
  • To have the familiarity of balance in whatever action the horse might take;
  • To have no aches or pains due to jarring e.g. back pain, shoulder, hip or joint pain;
  • To experience lightness and freedom while riding;
  • And above all, to enjoy the whole experience!

Sue Paterson, ESNZ Dressage and judge says. “After my first Alexander session with Jann I walked out feeling much lighter and freer. I ride and compete in dressage and my horse is showing increased freedom and energy also”.

Do you recognise these in yourself?
Words of wisdom from horse rider and Alexander Technique teacher Sally Swift.

 – She knows that when her horse can respond to her aids with an easy alertness devoid of tense reaction.
 – Sally is creating a more harmonious and pleasurable relationship with him.
 – While a rider may understand this deeply, their own use may get in the way of these ideals.
 – If she herself is not easily balanced, but tipping forward or leaning back, it will affect the horse’s ability to balance.
 – Her horse cannot free his back if her own back is held (stiffened) in place rather than having the elastic suppleness of her muscles;
 – Should her reactions or communication convey frustration or annoyance, the horse cannot respond with ease.
 – A rider cannot blame her horse for his lack of freedom, and balance in movement if she herself is not applying these principles to her own self, step by step.

What you need to know..

You need to know that the vital point of balance is where the head sits on the top of the spine. This delicate balance affects the core and the rest of you.

While this is important, so is the top of your head to your seat bones alignment.

Being alert too that the soles of the feet releasing down gives the lightness going up.

Just using this knowledge can give the rider and horse stability.  Just that awareness.  It is marvelous.

A happy horse is a balanced horse! 

Without poise and postural balance in the rider, the horse’s step is subtly affected which in turn influences the horse’s whole performance and enthusiasm.

And shows up in the rider through sore back and unnecessary tension.

Rachel Williams of Auckland said “After just a few Alexander lessons with Jann, it was the first time I felt really balanced while sitting on my horse.”.

Many top class riders have used the Alexander Technique to boost them into a higher level.

Because of his dedication, a natural connection is seen as a result of Alexander lessons here:  Olympic champion Mark Todd has won successive Olympic gold medals in 1984 and 1988.  His later successes in the 2012 Olympics show his great poise and unity between him and horse.

Are you struggling…
To increase your performance.  To gain cohesiveness with you horse riding?
For more information email Jann