Rider Biomechanics

Improve your posture & performance

What is Rider Biomechanics?

 

Biomechanics is the study of the structure, function and motion of the mechanical aspects of your body.  Assessing biomechanics is a common occurance in sport to improve and enhance performance and to reduce the risk of injury.    

 

Horses’ are very sensitive creatures and through schooling we try and improve that sensitivity to our aids all of the time.  They are therefore VERY in tune with our body mechanics, and any asymmetries or imbalances can greatly effect their way of going very rapidly. 

 

Why biomechanics?

 

The benefits are twofold.  When we assess and make changes to a riders' biomechanics not only are we reducing their risk of injury and enhancing the riders' performance but also that of the horse.  

 

Liz Frayling is our resident Biomechanics expert!  Not only is she a professional rider and a coach, she is also a qualified Neuromuscular and Sports Massage Therapist and Ireland's ONLY Franklin Method Equestrian Instructor!  

 

What does each session entail?

Each session will begin with a detailed movement analysis, normally in all three paces and if applicable, during specific dressage movements or jumping.  After making an assessment, Liz will work with the rider to create a plan of action, our aim, to minimise the risk of injury and improve performance.  Liz will use a variety of techniques including Franklin balls, bands, and on/off horse exercises to facilitate the best possible outcome.  

Image courtesy of Bel-Air RC

Franklin Method Equestrian 

The Franklin Method combines anatomical embodiment, the use of imagery and tools such as Franklin Balls to improve awareness, thereby improving our posture and the efficiency of our movements.

With practice, it is possible to become more aware of not only your own movement, but also that of your horse thereby improving the connection between horse and rider and "feel" becomes more relevant and present.

 

The key to the Franklin Method is the use of imagery.

But why train with imagery?

 

The most powerful tool that we have is our mind and the Franklin Method teaches you how to utilise this tool and how that can then effect movement and function.  With practise, creating more anatomically correct embodiment or visualisation, your movement quality WILL improve.  Improved function and balance in the saddle creates improved strength, flexibility and posture naturally in your riding.  How does this effect your horse?  If you as the rider are effectively in "self carriage" you are not hindering your horses' natural movement, balance or rhythm allowing them to be more coordinated, efficient and balanced in their movement.  This creates a happy horse willing to work with you!

Photo courtesy of Bel-Air RC

Neuromuscular Therapy

Neuromuscular Therapy involves a precise examination and treatment of the body's soft tissue, specifically focusing on chronic pain and injury including musculoskeletal injuries related to physical activity.  

NMT is highly effective for clients presenting with chronic or acute pain or injury and is successful in reducing or eliminating even longstanding conditions. Helping to improve performance in sport and to prevent injuries due to these activities is a key element of our sessions.  

NMT assessments primarily address

  • myofascial trigger points (hypersensitive points within muscles that give rise to referred pain response)

  • neural entrapment or compression (pressure on nerves by muscles and other soft tissues or by bonelike tissues)

  • mobilisation of joints

  • postural assessment 

  • gait analysis

Photo courtesy of Bel-Air RC

What we can offer you:

Rider Biomechanics Training on your horse at our base 

Organise a Clinic at your yard

Online Rider Biomechanics Training

-online lessons

-webinars and workshops

Biomechanics for Carriage Drivers