The Posting Trot
 By bucknut   •   29th May 2010   •   10,936 views   •   6 comments
The Posting TrotMany of us have rode a horse at a trot. Actually, a lot of us have. Those of you that have, you know that some horses may be very uncomfortable to ride at a trot. For those of you that don't, I can gurantee that it is very uncomfortable to ride a "rough" horse.

The trot can be very bouncy on some horses. On others it may be very smooth. The trot is a bouncy gait, unlike the canter, which is more of a rocking chair feeling.

To help smoothen out your ride, try posting! Posting is where you simply rise out of the saddle for every other stride of the horses forelegs, or when the outside foreleg stretches forward. When the outside foreleg stretches forward you simply do a small stand up in the stirrups, returning quickly. You do not have to stand up all the way,and you do not have to sit down hard. Nice and smooth and try to have rhythm. This not only makes the trot comfortable for you, but it is also comfortable for your horse.

How to practice:
1. The easiest way to try is on a lunge line. This way you do not have to worry about steering. You are then able to focus on watching the forelegs and keeping rhythm. Once you master this you will post without even looking down! If you cant practice on a lunge line, try it in an arena or pen where your horse cant go anywhere you don't want it to go. It also helps to practice on a well trained horse.

2. Another way to practice is called "two-point preperation". All you have to do is practice sitting half seat,or sitting two-point. This is where you lift your bottom out of the saddle, stay tense but be careful not to grip too tightly with your upper legs and stand slightly in the saddle. Attempt to control your position with your muscles instead of putting all your weight in your stirrups. This all improves your leg strength. Remember to not use your hands to stay up,because this defeats the purpose.

Trying the posting-trot:
1. Once you are relaxed and comfortable, cue your horse to trot.

2. With your horse at a steady trot try to sit and keep your back flexible to absorb the bumps. The upward and forward thrust you will feel is called the impulsion. If your horse has very little impulsion you will find sitting the trot very easy. If your horse has strong impulsion you will be lifted out of the saddle. Do not attempt to post yet. Try sitting reguraly.

3. Once you have discovered the rhythm—and it may be helpful to count one, two, one, two—try rising on one and gently lowering on two. The action is up and forward with the pelvis, standing in two-point and sitting on every other stride. Continue this rhythm as your horse trots steadily. Try to stay in beat and avoid double posting, or "double bumping".

4.Concentrate on keeping your lower leg motionless from the knee down. Don’t lift with your toes, grip excessively with your knees, let your legs to swing, or let your ankles to cave in. Many beginners shove their feet forward. Looking down, you should not be able to see your toes. The basic position of the good seat is maintained at every gait.

Dont forget to keep your hands steady! If the inside of one leg is getting chaffed check that you are sitting square in the saddle. Check that your stirrup leathers are the same length. Compensate for differences in leg length with a shim in your boot. Most people have one leg longer than the other affecting balance in the saddle. Chaffing on both legs means your legs are swinging. Practice keeping your lower leg still and wear riding pants with leather knee patches or tall boots for extra grip.

Also keep in mind its not all about strength of the upper body. Posting isnt a brute excersise but you may get winded! Remember, horseback riding is actually a type of excersise!

Now you can have a happy, smooth trot! Both you and your horse will enjoy it! Remember to have fun, sit back and post!
Horse News More In This Category:  Horse Training      Horse News More From This Author:  bucknut
Chris Antley Memorial  MOD 
This is a great article and reminder! Good job =D
  May 29, 2010  •  5,248 views
sarah kane  
  May 30, 2010  •  5,266 views
Good article. I ride Western, and do not post though...
  May 30, 2010  •  5,234 views
Dark Star  
You dont post in a western saddle or on a gaited horse
  May 31, 2010  •  5,202 views
You can post on trail rides no matter how you ride. I ride both English and western. In English I used to not be able to pick up the right diagonal, now I can. YEAH! Practice makes perfect!
  Jun 1, 2010  •  5,224 views
Dark Star you are right,it isnt considered correct to post on either of those. But like Dreamer100 said,it helps on trails
  Jun 2, 2010  •  5,234 views
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