Get a Handle on Your Reins

Tack and equipment play an important role in riding and training horses. Knowing the options and making the right choices can make a huge difference in your riding. The four natural aids of the rider that allow communication between horse and rider are the seat, legs, hands and voice. The reins are an extension of […]

Look, Breathe, Sit Back To Boost Riding Confidence

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Three steps to overcoming riding nervousness–plus, a way to remember them when it matters most. Fear can make you tense and defensive. That, in turn, can cause you to be rough with your horse. It’s as if you’re trying to bluff him into believing you’re not afraid. But you’re not fooling him; he’s just catching […]

Making Smooth Gait Transitions In Horses

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Clinician Julie Goodnight tells you how to use pre-signals and breathing techniques to improve your horse’s transitions between gaits. Are your horse’s transitions between gaits as smooth as glass? Or do you hold your breath and hope for the best as your horse hops on his forehand to slow down and lurches forward when asked […]

Understanding Your Leg Aids

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Understand Your Leg Aids The “natural aids” are the tools that you were born with that allow you to communicate to the horse what you want him to do while you are riding. Traditionally, there are four natural aids, the seat, the legs, the hands and the voice. If you have attended one of my […]

Balanced Riding Position

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Ask Julie Goodnight: Question: How should my upper body be as I ride? Answer: Much focus is given to the rider’s seat and leg position, as it should be, for these are critical areas that effect equitation. However, the upper body (head, neck, chest, shoulders and arms) should not be forgotten and constant diligence must […]

Riding Skills: Using Your Upper Body Properly

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Question Category: Riding Skills Question: How should my upper body be as I ride? Answer: Much focus is given to the rider’s seat and leg position, as it should be, for these are critical areas that effect equitation. However, the upper body (head, neck, chest, shoulders and arms) should not be forgotten and constant diligence […]

Riding Skills: Time Length & Help To Open Pelvis

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Question Category: Riding Skills Question: Hello Julie, I really enjoy your lectures you are so much easier to listen to than many of the other presenters! I was wondering about the appropriate length of time that a training session with your horse should last. I realize that a lot of that depends on the difficulty […]

Riding Skills: Improving Rider Position Using Gravity

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Question Category: Riding Skills Question: What’s the best way to improve my riding position? Answer: We have talked in previous articles about the importance of a balanced position with ear-shoulder-hip-heel alignment and open and relaxed joints that allow the rhythm of the horse to flow through the rider. Proper position unites the balance of horse […]

Riding Skills: How Do I Get A Secure Seat To Ride Out Spooks?

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Question Category: Riding Skills Question: Dear Julie, Last night I watched your TV show on introducing the horse to the surf. It was very informative but the thing that impressed me the most was how you maintained your wonderful, balanced seat and body position while the horse was jumping sideways! Unfortunately, when my horse spooks […]