Have you ever struggled with your horse being crooked and stiff?
Leaning in their corners, unable to keep a correct bend, or moving very hollow and anxious?
Perhaps being spooky, often seeming tense or tight, or displaying behavior problems such as head shaking, biting, or bucking?
These problems all have one factor in common – Tension.
Tension can affect your horse in many ways, from causing him to move poorly, creating an uncomfortable ride and putting increased stress on his back, legs, and joints, to affecting him emotionally, causing stress, anxiety, and behavior problems.
Regardless of our riding discipline or activity, we want our horses to feel good and to move with ease and grace. A well-balanced horse is a pleasure to ride and will be able to better maintain his soundness and longevity.
A balanced, soft, and supple horse is also able to be more responsive to our riding aids and to remain calm, even in stressful situations.
When we ride, it is our responsibility to teach our horse how to use his body to best carry our weight and perform the athletic movements we ask for. Even if all you want is to amble down the trail on the weekends, a soft and supple horse is a pleasure to ride.
The downside to ignoring tension in the horse is at best slowly developing soundness issues or at worst, a behavior problem that may appear to be unpredictable but in reality was likely building for months.
It is often thought that poor movement, even poor conformation, cannot be corrected, or that behavior problems are the result of a stubborn or difficult horse.
The truth is that these horses can be helped and these challenges solved, all while creating a better relationship with your horse and practicing skills that will help you become a more confident and effective rider.
This method is known as In Hand work, where the horse is guided through a series of progressively difficult exercises, building strength, suppleness, and balance in their body, while promoting relaxation and calmness.
In Hand exercises help the horse both physically and mentally, developing them to be more strong, supple, and balanced in their body as well as calm and focused in their mind.
Through In Hand work, we teach the horse to be aware of his body, to bend evenly to both sides, and to move forwards, backwards, and laterally smoothly and softly.
In 18 years of teaching clinics around the world and starting over 3,000 young horses, Patrick has refined the in hand work he teaches to a simple progression of exercises.
Patrick has a unique breadth of experience, riding in varied disciplines, and studying with many other master horsemen, including Ray Hunt, Mark Russell, and Master Luis Valenca. He specializes in teaching the principles of classical dressage to riders from ALL disciplines.
In this training, Patrick King is going to take you through a series of fun exercises that will help your horse find relaxation, to both move and feel better.
Patrick is engaging and clear in how he teaches. I love that he gives the horses confidence and allows them to have some expression in the process.
This course lays out a clear path to follow for learning in-hand work no matter what type of riding you do.
Comprehensive videos with in depth explanations, theory, and troubleshooting really help with understanding how to work with your horse. Being able to ask questions and see the questions and answers from other participants is also quite beneficial. Very educational and fun!
~ Dani Henry
In just a few short weeks, this course has helped me achieve the level of communication with my horse that has eluded us for the past 15 years, and I've only been able to complete through the third lesson (due to time constraints)!
This course has been fantastic for me and my horses. My main riding gelding is now 24, refined communication through the reins has been elusive all these years, but within two weeks of starting this course all that has changed. Thank you so much!
~ Lisa S
Each Lesson is broken into manageable videos so you can watch as little or as much as you have time for – and review specific lessons quickly and easily.
In this first part of the course, you will learn why in hand work is important for any horse, and the essential responses your horse will need to understand before getting started with this work.
Once you've gone through the preparation work with your horse, you’re ready to work on basic in hand exercises.
Regardless of the discipline you're riding, these in hand exercises are going to help your horse to achieve better alignment of his body, better engagement of his haunches, and more freedom through the shoulders.
We began with exercises to develop mobility in your horse’s body as well as rhythm in his movement. Now we progress to exercises that lead us further on the path to collection and build strength in the horse’s body.
We are now moving on to exercises in the bridle, where we have an outside rein to connect and collect the horse.
In this section, we ask our horse for more engagement and connection to the hindquarters. From here we can change position and do more lateral work, affecting the position of the haunches, the engagement, and ultimately the degree of collection that we get from our horse. This is where it starts to get really fun!
Now that you have gone through the first steps of the positions, it is time to practice patterns. These patterns will encourage you to move through the transitions more fluidly from one position to another.
In this section, you will work through several of the patterns with your horse, plus watch Patrick coach several other horse/rider pairs through the patterns.
The Pattern Pack contains 5 additional patterns to keep your In Hand work focused, interesting, and challenging for you and your horse.
The Patterns provide direction and purpose to your practice. If you ever go into a training session and feel as though you get stuck now knowing what to work on next, practicing the patterns keeps you focused and moving ahead!
Now you can enjoy an Audio Lesson to guide your In Hand work!
Be guided through a basic In Hand lesson with your horse that will help you become more aware of what you are doing with your body and what to notice in your horse. Get simple reminders of what to look and feel for in yourself and your horse.
You can download the Lesson and listen wherever and as often as you like – just plug in your headphones and listen along as you practice your In Hand work!
Heidi has been practicing yoga for over 17 years and is a specialist in teaching Yoga for Riders. She has always had a passion for animals and grew up riding horses and spending as much time as possible at the barn.
Heidi lives in Nosara, Costa Rica and teaches yoga classes for all levels and is co-founder of a retreat company combining the transformative power of yoga and horses.
Heidi’s formal training in yoga is a 500 hour Registered Yoga Training (200 hours of yoga teacher's training through YogaWorks with Kia Miller and 300 hours of SmartFlow training with Annie Carpenter).
In her classes, Heidi focuses on correct alignment, listening to your own body and limits, and building on slow, correct movement – and you will often hear her say “If it feels too much, it is too much”!
Through the class, Heidi will guide us in a sense of curiosity and awareness of what is happening in our body and mind while we are practicing.
“Is it possible? ”
After only 2 classes not even doing them well I feel so much better, even the knees!
“Thank you for these classes!”
Heidi's explanations are so helpful! I'm very deconditioned, and really appreciate the modifications she suggests for people who just aren't that strong yet. Thank you.
“ Great session.”
Heidi is very clear and thoughtful in her directions. Thanks CRK.
It doesn’t matter if you have never done yoga before because the classes will begin with basic foundational poses and movements and gradually integrate more poses and concepts as the program progresses.
Especially as a rider, Heidi is the perfect teacher to help you get started, guiding you in a yoga routine that has been created specifically for the unique challenges of riders.
“Getting better every day ”
I love this—never having done yoga I was nervous about not keeping up but it’s so well presented and the FB group is so supportive and interesting with the international members. I still suck at it, but that’s for now—it’s getting better every day!
“Toes in the yoga pool ”
Absolutely AMAZING! Thank you. Just what I needed to get my toes in the yoga pool. Looking forward to more.
“First time doing yoga ”
First time doing yoga, I was worried about being overweight if I could do it, but it was fun!
You will need a non-slippery surface to do the movement classes – this is why yoga mats are so great! Many people like the thicker mats to also provide some cushioning, especially if your knees or hands tend to get sore.
You may also want to purchase a pair of yoga blocks and a stretch strap, but if needed, these can also be improvised with towels and a stack of books.
This class is designed for beginner to intermediate students, with NO base level of fitness needed. If you are fit enough to get on a horse, you are definitely fit enough for this class.
And if you’ve been waiting to ride until you get more fit, Heidi is here to help!
(If you are still unsure, ask your family doc if it would be ok for you to start a light yoga routine.)
Our bodies are not perfect. Especially as riders, many of us have had our share of mishaps that leave us sore, stiff, or with limited mobility.
The way to improve is to move, and when you know what to do to modify poses for your unique body, you can be confident and feel good every step of the way.
Through each class, Heidi mentions modifications that you can do when you feel uncomfortable, plus we have a special bonus focused on how to modify for injuries.
In each pose, Heidi guides you through how to find the best alignment, for example “check that your knee is right over your ankle here”.
But more importantly, yoga is about listening to your own body, finding your limits, and noticing what feels good and what doesn’t.
These classes are designed for beginner to intermediate students. Especially in the early weeks, Heidi carefully describes each pose and how to move through the pose, with a focus on alignment and steady, purposeful movement.
Heidi describes more advanced versions of poses, but will be mostly demonstrating the beginner to intermediate poses.
You have a full year of access to repeat these classes as often as you wish! You can also download the classes to continue watching them or to watch them in areas where internet service is not suitable for streaming.
The classes are all pre-recorded and will be available at the beginning of each week, so you can do each class on your own schedule! No need to be on live at any specific time.
As with all of our HorseClass programs, I want you to be completely confident and comfortable joining Yoga for Riders.
If you are not satisfied with this Program for any reason, return it for a full refund within 30 days of joining.
We would love to have you join us!
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