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If you love riding, it probably feels as though you never get enough time in the saddle.

Especially right now, as many barns are just reopening, and clinics, lessons, and shows have been canceled.

There are so many priorities to pull our attention, but what if you could anchor your day with a few simple activities that will make you a better rider, regardless of the actual saddle time you get.

In this week’s video, I will share three ways to improve your riding from anywhere.

Spoiler alert… one of these you could likely guess… improve your fitness (I will share what I feel are the best forms of exercise).

The other two ways most people overlook, but they are even more important than just your overall fitness.

Hit play below to watch the video, then leave a comment with what you will do to be a better rider.

Feel Fit, Strong, and Confident
In and Out of the Saddle
Check out our
Yoga for Riders Program

Resources from the video: the Yoga for Riders Program and Learn More About Visualization

BETTER RIDING IN 7 DAYS (FREE MINI COURSE)

Daily exercises for an immovable seat, steady hands, and a happier horse

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Better riding in 7 days (FREE Mini Course)

Daily exercises for an immovable seat, steady hands, and a happier horse

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Comments

64 Responses

  1. A friend of mine forwarded your site. We are so much on the same page with training. I’ve had Loki my Norwegian Fjord now for 10 years and he’s been my coach and best pal for all these years. I prefer to ride bareback and did initially when I first got him as I was in FL and it was just to hot to saddle up. I live in Bend OR now and soon to be in Aiken SC and my preference is still bareback. Thank you for your inspiration to others!

  2. Thank you so very much for all your training videos, they are a blessing! As I have only limited access to internet where we live, I was wondering if you could recommend a book that would show some Yoga exercises for riders?
    Thanks again!

  3. I have a yoga practice, which I have temporarily suspended while I deal with vertigo. I would like to become involved in Feldenkrais work, as it relates to riding, but don’t know how to sift through all the options on the internet to find the right fit.
    I am open to suggestions.

    1. If you are on facebook look up page “How Can Feldenkrais help riders” Great starting point and lot of free resources .I went on from here to do both The Aware Rider courses as well.

  4. I already take a yoga class twice a week, but more yoga is always great! I’ve only Had my horses/been riding about three years now . Ever since they came into my life I feel like I’ve practically needed to grow a new brain for all the learning! I’m always scouring the internet and reading whatever I can, there’s so much to learn. Visualization is the one thing I haven’t heard about before and I think it would be a big help with confidence or anxiety control. Just imagining a ride with calm body and mind seems like it could transfer into reality.

  5. I am old–(89) and — stiff — It is hard to be fluid when I ride ( infrequently) and am interested in ‘feldinkries– I am unfamiliar with this — I do yoga and stretching daily–
    I was watching the movie “Man from Snowy River ” and came out of my chair in a 3 point when he jumped the corral fence– So much for visualization !!!
    The video is quite good instuction————-Thanks

  6. Thank you!!! I do yoga and i really enjoy doing it i just need more consistency, but i’m going to tale a look at fendelkrais technics!

    1. Hi Charlie, thanks for your comment! I’d love to have you check out our Developing Balance In Hand program taught by Patrick King to help develop your horse’s topline from the ground, you can click here to learn more 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  7. Thank you for your video’s they are super informative and helpful. Im very new at all this and want to impove my horseman ship , creating a better seat and a more relaxed horse and rider ,selfaweness and confidence in my horse ultimately is my # 1 goal

  8. Hi. I am going to think and visualize my horse and I walking past the little pony in the field we go by with confidence and I stay in control although my horse wants to get to excited by this other horse.

  9. I’m working on practising yoga and pilates for better flexibility when I ride. Apart from this, I have just asked for
    a new book about horses. Of course, watching your fabolous videos and courses is for me the best way of learning and improving on these days.
    Thank you for everything Callie!!
    Greetings from Spain.

  10. I just turned 80 and without Yoga I would not be riding my two horses.
    Callie’s classes are great – always very informative and easy to follow.
    Many thanks, Callie

    1. Yoga is fantastic! Glad you enjoy our classes with Heidi 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  11. I’m practising yoga and pilates everyday for better riding and flexibility.
    On the other hand, I’m learning a lot with your fabolous videos and courses, they are so useful for me!! And I also have just asked for a new book to read about horses.
    Thank you for your great work Callie, you are amazing!!
    Greetings from Spain!!

    1. Thanks for being a part of our community all the way from Spain, glad to have you here Nuria!

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  12. Thanks for that advice. I do practise yoga often and understand my body with it, noticing improvements in my strength and flexiblity but have had breaks so need to practise more often again. Feldenkrais work is something I will like to look in to. I used to Visualise riding when I was a teenager going for weekly lessons and it does work! I will do that more often too.

    1. Visualization is a great tool! Glad you enjoyed the video 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  13. This is an informative video– at 89, I do yoga every day –feed 4 head horses, irrigate a small patch of ground and care for my housebound wife. It is hard to get my leg over the cantle now, but the horses are tolerant and a 20 minute ride is about all the back will handle.
    I am interested about the Feldenkreis program for fitness– It is new on my knowledge base and If you could either explain or a reference I could research, I would appreciate it. J. Thomas Johnston,M.D.

  14. I have never tried Yoga so I would like to focus on that. I’d like to see how Yoga will help me with these things you mentioned in this video and also maybe help me strengthen my core. Where should I begin? Thanks always for your many tips. Much appreciated.

  15. Hi, I had a bad fall two weeks ago. Severe bruising through my pelvis has subsided but I still can’t sit from pain around my coccyx. Also cracked ribs with internal bleeding. I can walk ok but can’t lift my left arm above my shoulder or twist but I am definitely getting more mobile every day. I have a four day ride booked for late October. What is a realistic rehab plan? Any advice?

    1. Hi Robyn, I would recommend consulting a doctor with an appropriate plan for rehab. I’m really sorry to hear about your fall!

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  16. Hi I’m Amy, thank you for your video on things to focus on when you’re not in the saddle. At present I’m only able to get in one lesson a week and this is how I came accross your videos on Youtube and eventually this blog, through learning. (I began riding around the age of 12 for a few years helping family friends run trail and pony rides and have recently just gotten back to it at a new place, with a few trails spread out over the years in between). Unfortunately with Covid19 and closures etc I only managed a trail and one lesson before lockdown. So I dug in to my “research/learning” mode and have been watching away (and practising where I can ie balance on my exercise bike hands held out beside me and exercising 3 times a week to improve my core strength and overall fitness). I feel that both these things have helped me get back to the basics and establish good foundations for me to be more confident and capable in the saddle than I might otherwise have been. That together with a great teacher and school horse. So given it’s only been a few months of riding again, but this time around with more knowledge and skill building, I’m hoping that my reignited passion for horses and riding will serve me well for years to come

    1. Hi Sonja, I hope you’ll check out the link that Callie shared with our video on visualization!

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  17. Dear Callie,
    I have been following your many lessons and videos for a long time. I like you and your work and
    the way you practise horsemanship in its best sense.
    Let me introduce myself: I am a retired orthopedic surgeon of 80 years of age, have been riding and owning horses for many years. By now I had to give up active riding due to my osteoporotic spine.
    But instead of loosing interest in horses and riding I began to watch more and more videos of all
    kind of riding ( mostly dressage ) and to reread my many books on riding. So I became still more
    intersted and I learned a lot of things which are quite essential and basic and absolutely
    necessary if you want to have a happy,pleasant, obedient, easily ridable and sound horse.
    I would like to contribute every now and then to your teaching activities by sending you my own
    ideas and experiences and more important some of the very useful and worthwile things I found
    and still find mostly in the internet resp. youtube.
    If you are intersted, let me know, so we can start a probably for both parts useful communication.
    Looking forward to your reply and best regards
    Michael

  18. I am interested in Feldenkrais as Pilates for me activated my vertigo. Glad I have discovered your online information during lockdown here in the U.K.

  19. I will be 70 next year so keeping active is key. I ride at a local yard a couple of times a week, an hour lesson on great school horses. Feldenkrais is an interest as Pilates has activated my vertigo. Glad I discovered CRK Training during lockdown here in the U.K. Thank You !!

    1. We’re glad you found us too Mags, thanks for being part of our community 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  20. I have been doing a Feldenkrais course during lockdown and it is has really helped me.In past found Yoga and Pilates a little to strong with my physical issues but Feldenkrais is so gentle and if cant do something you just visualize doing it.Visualization is an area I would like to inprove on will check out your link below.

    1. Hi Suzanne, yes absolutely check out the link about visualization! It is a very powerful tool for improving riding when you can’t be in the saddle 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  21. I haven’t been able to ride my horse for about 4 months. While I have been reading about horses during this time, I think I need to work on my physical abilities. I’m going to start working on Yoga and also doing some walking and running. For the last 4 months I haven’t been able to do these things not only because of COVID, but because of my ailing Mother, who passed on June 22. I think physical activity is the best thing for me right now both mentally and physically. I loved the videos you have and will go back and start reviewing them. Thanks Callie.

    1. I am very sorry to hear about the loss of your mother Kathleen. I’ve always found physical activity soothing both mentally and physically and I hope you find it does the same for you!

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  22. I have ridden with training for many years. I started after I was 40 and inherited my daughters hand me down horses. All were very good. Recently I’ve become more timid.
    I absolutely enjoy you videos and love your small hints and suggestions. You are excellent at what you do. Thank you

  23. Great and informative as usual, I am doing exercises for riding which I will continue with, but now thats up and running, will now- I think- focus on visualization. Thanks Callie!

  24. Hi – I have plenty of time to visualize – In the beginning of June I broke my femur above my artificial knee. I am done for the season that I have been preparing for. I spent the winter at an indoor arena and had a lot of riding time along with taking weekly lessons. Over the past couple of years I have gained knowledge from Callie’s courses and Wendy Murdock’s books. I also practice Feldenkrais and yoga. Thank Heavens that the break was not horse related. I merely slipped on a slippery slope and the force of the bend caused the bone, instead of the titanium knee , to break. ( FYI , I am a 67 yr. old horse girl) Thank you Callie, for this weeks post. You have encouraged me!

    1. I’m sorry to hear about your accident Ilze! Great way to spend your time visualizing so you can improve while you can’t ride!

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  25. I could only ride about 2 to 3 times per month even without COVID-19, which made rides even fewer. So this information is very encouraging. I do have a regular exercise program but it doesn’t include yoga. I’ve been thinking about incorporating some yoga into my activities. This video gives me an incentive. I have devoted more time during this pandemic to learning. This includes reviewing past CRK videos. They not only provide useful information but there’re concise.

    Thank you Callie

    1. Hi Melvin, definitely add some yoga practice into your activities for when you can’t ride! Thanks for watching our videos 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  26. I really loved your explanation of visualisation – seeing myself riding my canter transitions will be my focus.
    I will be cantering both reins, picking up the correct canter lead each time, applying the aids at correct moment and my body will be relaxed
    Thank you Callie

  27. I so enjoy all your training/lessons on riding and improving my riding ability. I am currently coming off an injury, so much of my previous exercise was in yoga, and thankfully, have just started back to it. I have done yoga on and off for most of my life. But yoga for riding is so beneficial to stretching, strength, and awareness of your body parts. I have not done any feldenkrais but plan on looking into it and see what more I can do. Appreciate all your valuable information and short videos which have put me on a great road to being a better horsewoman. I’m in Montana and don’t have an instructor at my beckon-call! So thanks again Cally!!!

    1. Karen, you will love Feldenkrais! I’m glad you enjoyed the video 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  28. Thank you so much. As an older rider with arthritis and not great posture, I would love to learn more about the yoga but starting in a level where I won’t hurt myself. Please sign me up for upcoming free classes

  29. …..if not deep , there is no dive ; if no dive , there is no deep …..

    The speaker has both depth and dive in chartering the call of the oceans within us….

  30. Hi Callie,
    Lots to think about today , I am going to try the visualisation through my own eyes , that is so obvious I cannot think why I didn’t think about that before!
    Thank you very much.

  31. I’m a big fan of yoga, but I doubt it really helps with riding. Even in dynamic forms as ashtanga, yoga is terribly static, whereas in horseback riding the difficulty is precisely to adapt to the movements of the horse and, even more difficult, to have the right timing.
    I think martial arts are more suitable. The French federation recommends judo.
    You can take a look at the slides : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gal9dmN6pJQ&t=2s
    The visualization is interesting, I watch a lot of videos, I will try to visualize myself doing the exercise after watching the video.

    1. Hi Nathalie, thanks for your comment! Martial arts are great for riders too 🙂

      -Julia, CRK Training Community Manager

  32. Funny you mention visualization, just the other day I was sitting in my living room thinking of my upcoming ride and closed my eyes and imagined how it would go…. how would I hold the reins so my horse didn’t dive down for some grass!! and came up with a plan and it worked!! we have had more than our usual amount of rain so the grass is very tall, my horse started to sneak a bite here and there and it had become an issue… but I found my solution thru visualization. Now that I know it is a “real thing”, I look forward to knowing a bit more from your videos. Thanks so much. I have really enjoyed watching them and I get something from each one.

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