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Movement For Riders

"Use it or lose it.”

Heard this before?

Ever wonder why you used to jump, roll, run around, and even fall as a child and you rarely got hurt?

This phrase takes on a profound meaning for physical movement. As we grow older, the demands of modern sedentary lifestyles can gradually erode the practical human movements we used to do effortlessly. 

This phenomenon is called body mapping, where our brains create a dynamic map of our bodies based on our daily movements and experiences. Areas that are used more, get more space, more neurons. Areas, and movements, that are not used, get less. 

When we lead mostly sedentary lives, our brains adapt to this limited range of motion, effectively reshaping our body maps to prioritize stillness over motion and stasis over mobility.

As our brains lose the body mapping space, and good sensory input, it becomes less safe to move. We are more easily injured, and worried about injury. 

The consequences of this shift in body mapping show up when we go to do something that takes a lot of physical skill and coordination. Like riding a moving horse. 

We find that once-natural movements like balance, flexibility, and coordination have become rusty and inefficient. 

But there’s hope. 

Because our bodies, and our brains, can CHANGE!

We can reverse and rewire that body map, and we can find movement that is once again easy, graceful, joyful, and pain free. 

But we need to MOVE. 

And not just a few random stretches here and there. Consistent movement, focused attention. 

It doesn’t need to be hard work. 

In fact, if you are working really hard, thinking “no pain, no gain” to get to your fitness goals, you are missing an important understanding of how the nervous system functions. 

Because strength and mobility is not just in our muscles, tendons, and ligaments. 

It is the coordinated function of our whole body, through our nervous system, that allows the movement and ease we experience. 

And you may be surprised at how super simple exercises can have a profound effect on your strength, flexibility, and comfort. 

Relieving pain you may have experienced for years, finding strength and balance you didn’t know you had, reawakening movements you had long forgotten. 

This is Movement for Riders, 30 days of movement practice to connect to your body. You will improve your strength, mobility, and balance in and out of the saddle. 

Most importantly, you will FEEL better and enjoy moving your body.

Here is what is included in
Movement for Riders

inclusion #1

Mini - Course on the Science

Movement and The Brain

Learn how our brain is the control center for all movement. You will learn how specific exercises create better balance and body awareness. You will also feel how strength and flexibility can be improved when the body feels more safe.

Smaller and Slower

Discover why no pain, no gain can actually hold you back more than help you improve. We will explore why doing too much can cause your body to want to restrict movement and to create pain and stiffness.

Everything is Connected

Come along to learn about the amazing system of fascia, and how the definition and understanding of this incredible structure is expanding, plus what this means for us as riders!

Inclusion #2

Modifications for any level

inclusion #3

Weekly Q&A + Live Demonstration Video

Inclusion #4

All Videos will be Downloadable

This is unlike anything you have tried before.

Most programs focus on the same linear movements, practiced consistently. 

It’s not wrong, but it’s limited. 

And it gets boring. 

Most riders want to improve their riding… better balance, stronger legs, improved coordination to give clear aids. 

But they are missing something very important. 

Their connection to and awareness of their bodies has been diminished. 

Practical, functional, HUMAN movements have been lost in a world of chairs, tables, looking down at phones, and leaning over computers. 

Most rider fitness programs only focus on becoming stronger. More leg. More core. Sometimes that’s important. Sometimes obsessive strength work only makes us more stiff, and less able to connect fluidly with our horse’s motion. 

Strong legs won’t help you if you are squeezing your horse so hard he CAN’T move forward. Or if by focusing on strength, the movement in your hip joints becomes less fluid. 

 Toned arms won’t help you ride any better if your elbows are locked and hanging on the horse’s mouth. 

A tight core may have you bouncing uncontrollably if you only brace your abdominals without deep core stability, and don’t know how to let the tension go to free your hips and flow with the horse’s motion. 

The key to good riding is coordinated movement. Where the body works as an organized unit, and the movement instincts of the body are restored. 

There is an intersection between linear training – do 5 squats – and intuitive flow – dance like no one is watching. That’s where we’re going. 

This is NOT yoga. 

It is NOT weight training. 

It is NOT stretching. 

What we will be doing together is moving. 

Recognizing your body’s ability to move with ease and grace. Remembering and restoring a sense of freedom, curiosity, and wonder in movement that you had as a child. 

Plus doing specific neuro exercises for balance and proprioception along the way. 

And of course, tying it all back to your riding. Seat, aids, and generally feeling like you were made to sit in that saddle on your beautiful steed, with the sun on your face and the breeze in your hair.

And one more thing… Somatics.

I keep talking about feel. What is that exactly? 

Connection to your senses, to your body, to the moment. 

Here’s an official definition: Somatics is a field within bodywork and movement studies which emphasizes internal physical perception and experience. The term is used in movement therapy to signify approaches based on the soma, or “the body as perceived from within”.

Put more simply, for me, it means exploring what’s going on with your body. 

This is weaved into each of the guided movement sessions, with a special Relaxation Session every seven days to guide you in letting go of long held tension. 

Types of Exercises we will be doing

About Me

I have always been an “active” person, and have done different types of exercises and exercise programs. 

As a child, I was constantly climbing, running, exploring. It was as though I had an innate desire to find all the places my body could take me. I would go off alone into the woods, climbing the rocks in the mountains behind my family’s home, lost in the challenge of the climb and pushing to see just how far I could go. 

Movement of any kind was a source of joy. I think this was innate but also with a heightened sense of gratitude for a healthy, fully functioning body. Growing up and seeing the struggles of my father, who is a paraplegic, I understood what a gift it is to be able to move. 

As a teenager I would come home from working at the barn to follow along in TV exercise classes with my mom. 

Then I started practicing yoga, weight lifting, running, experimenting with nutrition and how I could feel with different diets. 

I studied martial arts, I learned Latin dance. I did some gymnastics training. Jack of all, and master of none, for me the consistent connection is always riding.

So how has all this affected my riding?

In my late 20s and early 30s, that question began to have a certain urgency, as the effects of numerous accidents through life began to intensify, and where did I experience the most pain? Riding. 

My long runs intensified the pain, the precise postures I was careful to maintain in my lifting were only tightening my body. 

I began to research and learn the science of mobility and movement. To focus less on the big, difficult exercises, and more on those that supported my structure, comfort, and well-being. 

Combined with the flow and changes of life, this led me to discovering classes near my home called “Movement Classes”. The name sounded interesting, the images on their website of people doing handstands and acrobatics was intriguing, and I went. 

Fast forward to today and I am in my second year of study in these classes. “Movement”, in the context of these classes, is an ever evolving practice of exercises developed by Ido Portal. It pulls concepts from each discipline – yoga, martial arts, pilates, gymnastics, dance, you name it, and brings them into a system that restores basic human function, alleviates many pains by balancing the body, and then allows for greater abilities in any specialty – in our case, riding. 

Now you understand what led me to creating this book, a short story of my personal experience and study that has been organized here for you, and perhaps a taste of why this program will be different from any other “rider fitness” regimen.

Are you in?

So here is your official invitation. Because this is something special.

This will be the first group in Movement for Riders, so I want it to be small so I can be available to everyone for questions, modification tips, etc. We will have a personal Facebook group for check ins, questions, and a little kick in the butt accountability… only if you need it of course 😉

I will be available in the FB group for Q&A and Live videos anytime you need some help or a video demo of how to further modify an exercise or movement. (all will then be posted to the member’s area, so no worries if you do not use Facebook.)

Join Movement for Riders

$297

One Time Payment in USD. Secure Checkout.

Remember – All are welcome… doesn’t matter what your age or fitness level is. If you have a body and a desire to move, this program will benefit you!

Also, no need for special equipment, just you, a mat, a blanket or towel, a chair, and a ready to explore, no judgments mindset. That’s it! 

I usually think too much about where to put my feet,( on/behind the girth ) how to use the right/left rein, how to keep my posture right …Probably there is some truth in all these technical instructions, but this program has given me another perspective in riding. Motion is created by the coordination and good balance of our whole body. Through the exercises, it seems my body learned something about it. I can’t describe in words, but these days my body becomes less stiff in the canter transition, which I’ve been struggling with for more than 10 years, and the transition becomes definitely smoother. I am looking forward to the rest of the exercises !!

Miho

This is an "exercise program" like no other. You don't push through multiple reps or see how long you can hold painful poses. You tune in to how your body and nervous system work in a truly miraculous way. The challenge here is in slowing down, paying attention, and responding creatively. I have found this class useful not just for riding but for nearly everything I do. Highly recommend!

Sara Grace

Coming Soon!