Have you ever struggled with correcting “chair seat”? Does your lower leg swing forwards and you are often told to “keep your legs back” in your lessons? If so. let’s have this quick chat!
Any knowledgeable horse owner who has ever tried to find a well fitting saddle for their horse will know that coming across one that sits perfectly on horse’s back, allows the horse to move freely and doesn’t ruin the bank account is not an easy task.
Equally challenging is finding the saddle that fits the horse as well as the rider. Today, I would like to draw your attention to a small element in saddle structure that can seriously influence your balance and that’s a stirrup bar placement.
The placement of the bar determines the position of the stirrup leather and the stirrup itself. If we are to sit comfortably with that hip/heel alignment giving us a feel of control over our own balance, we need the stirrup to hang underneath the deepest part of the saddle where centre of our seat is supposed to be.
Many riders sit well without stirrups but the moment they re-take them, their seat loses its centred quality and they tend to struggle with positioning of the thigh and lower leg so that they support their own weight rather than sitting as if in a chair.
The placement of the bar and individual built of the rider (length of thigh and lower leg) has a big impact here and so I have listed a few interesting resources below that are well worth a read:
2. Male and Female rider vs stirrup bar position
3.Stirrup Bar Position – “Why do some saddles put you in a chair position”
What’s your saddle like? Does it help or hinder your position and effectiveness?