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Thigh bruises when riding with no stirrups - help!

(6 Posts)
babybat Thu 06-Nov-14 12:44:01

So I've been learning to ride for several years, and my heart sinks whenever my instructor tells me to take my stirrups away. Pretty much every time I have bruises on my inner thighs by the next day, I think where my legs are pressing against the stirrup leather. I've tried pulling the leather/buckle further away from the stirrup bar, but it still doesn't lie flat, and I still get bruises.

Most of the horses I ride are using GP rather than dressage saddles, and on the rare occasion where I've ridden a horse in a dressage saddle it hasn't seemed to be such a problem, so I think it might in part be due to me gripping up with my thigh. I have private lessons once a week and I cycle and do pilates every week, so I'm reasonably fit. How can I get round this?

OscarWinningActress Thu 06-Nov-14 16:01:52

My instructor showed me how to make them lie flat which involves pulling the buckle way down the leather and then folding the stirrup leather carefully over the saddle, then securing it under that little leather flap that covers the bar. You have to put your leg back in place quickly so it doesn't twist around again. The other way would be to take the leathers off all together...it is NO STIRRUPS NOVEMBER after all wink.

babybat Fri 07-Nov-14 12:17:11

Thanks Oscar - I think I'm going to get plenty of chances to practice, as my instructor is pretty determined to improve my no-stirrups performance! In the meantime I'm just going to keep slathering on the arnica...

Butkin Fri 07-Nov-14 12:27:51

Have you mentioned this to your instructor? What do you do with your stirrups - presumably you're crossing them over your wither to save taking them off? I can't see how you can rub the leathers then.. The alternative would be to slip them off the stirrup bar and pass them to your instructor..

asgm12 Mon 02-Feb-15 20:44:41

Try relaxing your thighs, after you've taken your stirrups away at halt swing your legs back and forth gently and then just let them dangle, totally relaxed. Then turn your toes inward a little so they aren't sticking out and make sure your toe isn't in front of your knee. practise staying in this relaxed position in walk (should be easy) then in trot. Hold the saddle with one hand in trot and lean back ever so slightly onto your bum. Keep the trot slow. Focus on staying relaxed and supple, particularly in the hips and lower back. Imagine when cantering how you roll with it to stay in balance and not bounce about. It's exactly the same technique. If you tense up, you bounce about which in turn causes your leg to rub against the leathers. if you are relaxed you absorb movement in the hips and back and your legs stay relatively still. good luck!

carabos Sun 08-Feb-15 19:44:03

I ride without stirrups a lot and always take them off the saddle.

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