I think every equestrian makes the same pained face when they hear the phrase “no stirrups work.” It doesn’t matter what their discipline is, how long they’ve been riding, or their age. What’s more, nearly every rider I’ve ever spoken to will say without prompting that riding without stirrups has improved their seat, balance, and leg control when they receive the award of taking their stirrups back.
But still, mention riding without stirrups and the pained expression appears. Why?
The answer is simple: Riding without stirrups is hard. It requires a degree of concentration, of control, and of determination that we as riders don’t necessarily have to supply to our daily training when our feet are securely positioned in our stirrups. (And let’s not even talk about the challenge of posting with no stirrups to push away from!)
I liken the college search to riding without stirrups. It isn’t easy. There are a lot of colleges and universities and majors and locations and student organizations to choose from and you feel like your mind is being pulled in a hundred different directions when you’re starting out – much like your leg can tend to flop around looking for that perfect position when your stirrups are first taken away. What’s more, school web sites can be hard to navigate and you will find all kinds of contradictory opinions about your potential colleges online that leaves your brain reeling. (It’s just like how nearly every riding instructor seems to have a different approach to riding without stirrups.)
But what do you get in the end if you put the time in? In the case of your riding, you develop a stronger base of support in the saddle and an independent leg and seat. In the case of your college search, you find a school that ticks all of the boxes for you – the right program in the right location and with the right atmosphere. (And that right school then becomes the base of support for your future career!)
The right riding instructor can help you improve your form by riding without stirrups and the right educational consultant can help you find that right-fit school. Contact me today and let’s start the search!