Centered Riding was developed by Sally Swift and is based on the knowledge of human and horse anatomy, balance and movement. Centered Riding is a mix of grounding techniques from the oriental martial arts, Feldenkrais, Alexander technique, mental imagery and sports psychology. Through increased awareness of inhibiting patterns, and replacing them with a more balanced, free, and coordinated use of self, both horse and rider can move more freely.
The Four Basics of Centered Riding are:
- Soft Eyes - Encourage visual and physical awareness, better peripheral vision, and improved “feel.”
- Breathing - Using the diaphragm and breathing correctly for better posture, relaxation, and energy.
- Building Blocks - Aligning the riders body for improved balance, straightness, and ease of movement.
- Centering - Using the center of gravity and the release and correct use of the Psoas muscle, located deep in the body, help you to ride from your centre
These fundamentals, together with clear intent and grounding exercises guide riders to freedom of movement and harmony between horse and rider.
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