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Letโ€™s talk about the warm up

๐‹๐ž๐ญโ€™๐ฌ ๐ญ๐š๐ฅ๐ค......


๐‘พ๐’‚๐’“๐’Ž ๐’–๐’‘...

How much do you think about your warm up?

Warm up is the chance to set the tone for the work thatโ€™s coming, itโ€™s a chance to work out where you and your horse is maybe feeling weakest and of course where youโ€™re both feeling good.

If youโ€™re a โ€œwing itโ€ rider when it comes to what youโ€™re actually going to do with that ride, then the warm up is a great place to see what actually needs working on.

If youโ€™re a rider with a plan, the warm up is a place where you can set your horse up to win, where you can prepare them for what you have planned.

๐‘ฉ๐’–๐’•, the warm up is also a place to create an atmosphere of fun and ease for our horses.

When I warm my horses up Iโ€™m looking to get them into โ€œ๐’‚ ๐’ˆ๐’๐’๐’… ๐’‡๐’“๐’‚๐’Ž๐’† ๐’๐’‡ ๐’Ž๐’Š๐’๐’…โ€, to look at the work as fun and for them to trust me in ๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’Š๐’“ ๐’ƒ๐’๐’…๐’š.

So how I organise their warm up is according to what they find easy.

If they are most comfortable in canter for example I ๐๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐œ๐š๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ซ ๐ฐ๐จ๐ซ๐ค ๐›๐ž๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ข๐ซ ๐ญ๐ซ๐จ๐ญ, if they love taking it easy, then I do ๐ฅ๐จ๐ญ๐ฌ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ญ๐ซ๐š๐ง๐ฌ๐ข๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ and movements in their walk.

What I try ๐ง๐จ๐ญ to do is start in their ๐’‰๐’‚๐’“๐’…๐’†๐’”๐’• pace, as to me this just gets them thinking โ€œ๐‘”๐‘œ๐‘ โ„Ž ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘–๐‘  ๐‘–๐‘  ๐‘”๐‘œ๐‘–๐‘›๐‘”๐‘ก๐‘œ ๐‘๐‘’ ๐‘Ž ๐‘ก๐‘œ๐‘ข๐‘”โ„Ž ๐‘Ÿ๐‘–๐‘‘๐‘’โ€ and thatโ€™s not the thought I want my horse to have of whatโ€™s to come.

We also need to remember ๐’˜๐’† ๐’„๐’‚๐’ ๐’๐’†๐’—๐’†๐’“ ๐’ƒ๐’†๐’ˆ๐’Š๐’ ๐’˜๐’‰๐’†๐’“๐’† ๐’˜๐’† ๐’๐’†๐’‡๐’• ๐’๐’‡๐’‡, itโ€™s so easy to have a great ride the day before and expect that to happen immediately, that feeling to return and then start to panic and get frustrated when it isnโ€™t there.

We need to remember that our horses arenโ€™t machines and like us they need time to get their bodies feeling good again, as do we. For those of you that do any sort of body work on yourselves you will know that at the beginning of your class you will feel a lot less mobile than midway though or by the end. And this is true every time you practice. ๐‘ฐ๐’•โ€™๐’” ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’”๐’‚๐’Ž๐’† ๐’‡๐’๐’“ ๐’๐’–๐’“ ๐’‰๐’๐’“๐’”๐’†๐’”. No matter how good they felt the ride before they will never feel that good from the moment you sit on them the next time, they ๐ง๐ž๐ž๐ time to loosen up.

The other thing we need to think about is what has our horse been doing before this ride? Have they been stables for a few hours? Have they been put in their field? Have they been on the horse box? This will tell us how stiff they feel and how much warm up they will need. A horse that has been stabled will need alot more walking than a horse who has been out in the field all day.

๐“๐ก๐ž ๐ฆ๐จ๐ฌ๐ญ ๐ข๐ฆ๐ฉ๐จ๐ซ๐ญ๐š๐ง๐ญ ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ง๐จ ๐ซ๐ฎ๐ฅ๐ž ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ก๐จ๐ฐ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฐ๐š๐ซ๐ฆ ๐ฎ๐ฉ, ๐›๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž ๐ง๐ž๐ž๐๐ฌ ๐ญ๐จ ๐›๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐จ๐ฎ๐ ๐ก๐ญ ๐ฉ๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐จ๐ž๐ฏ๐ž๐ซ๐ฒ ๐ฐ๐š๐ซ๐ฆ ๐ฎ๐ฉ.

Some questions to ask:

โ€ข What has my horse been doing before this ride?

โ€ข Whatโ€™s your horses favorite pace?

โ€ข What is your ultimate aim for your ride?

โ€ข How do you feel in the saddle today?

โ€ข How does your horses energy feel?

โ€ข How do they respond to the aids?

โ€ข How do they feel on each rein?

These questions can really help you to develope a warm up that helps your horse and you.

Do you have any other warm up ideas? Or questions? Comment below ๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿผ

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