Sunday, April 30, 2017

Stop! Let’s Think About This: At the Mounting Block (Part 2 of 2)

by Jessica Crouch

So, by now you have gone through your basic pre-ride checks, and decided to ride. The horse feels ready, and you have a good idea of how much he knows and what state his mind is in. You have established a basic communication with him. Next question: To use a mounting block or not?

Almost all equine bodywork professionals will encourage you to use a mounting block as it is easier on the horse’s back.  The torque of a human pulling their weight up can cause significant pressure on a horse's spine. Many people simply need the extra height to get on.  I usually use a mounting block or fence to mount my horse, though I make sure my horses are comfortable with a person just mounting from the ground. So let’s start with the mounting block.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Stop! Don’t get on that horse! (Yet.) Part 1 of 2

by Jessica Crouch

Spring is finally here and many of you are eager to get riding again.  Maybe a friend has invited you for a trail ride and offered you a horse you don’t know well.  Maybe you are anxious to get your green horse going again and see if you can develop him a bit more this year.  YOU are anxious to get riding, but before swinging into the saddle, there are some basic things you should do to check if your HORSE is ready.