4 Simple

20 April 2017

If you grew up in an equestrian world, you’ll know that riders can often become stiff and sore after horse riding.

But it can be avoided at least in part by helping to stretch out your tired muscles - keeping you flexible and keen for many more horse riding days ahead!


So once you’ve looked after your horse post-ride, give yourself 15 to 20 minutes of stretching and relaxing with these easy yoga poses…



1.  Bound Angle



Start by sitting down, keeping your back straight, chest slightly puffed out and bring your feet together in front of you, making a diamond shape with your legs.


Gently move your knees up and down, stretching out the groin and inner thighs.


This can be a challenging pose for horse riders because so much time is spent clenching the inner thighs to the saddle and bound angle focuses on opening the hips back up, so don’t force it – just open as wide as is comfortable for a gentle stretch.



2.  Cat-Cow



Start on your hands and knees in tabletop position and on an inhale, arch your back, dropping your tummy towards the floor and lifting your face and tailbone towards the ceiling, gazing up.


On an exhale, round your back, dropping your tailbone and head towards the floor. Do a few rounds with your own breath, trying to keep it nice and slow.


This sequence gently stretches both the abdominal muscles and the back, which can all become quite tight and sore after a ride.


3.  Lunges 



Starting in tabletop again, bring one foot forward between your hands and then place your hands , lifting your upper body.


Move your other leg back until you feel a nice stretch along the front of your thigh and psoas.


Stretch out your arms, pointing in front and behind you and stay in this pose for a minute or so before swapping legs.



4.  Child’s Pose



From tabletop, sit back towards your heels, stretching your arms out in front of you, hands planted on the ground.


This stretches your back and sides and is a great restorative stretch after horse riding. It can help relieve lower back pain and relax the muscles along the back.


Whatever your equestrian discipline, try to make time for these super-simple post-ride body stretches after every ride, and your body will thank you for it!


Text by Carly Dolan