Practicing Equestrian Tai Chi can be of benefit to riders of different disciplines, different levels of ability and different age groups:-
It can help competition riders who want to deepen their connection with their horse, so they can perform as a more tightly knit team.
It can alleviate competition nerves, giving riders a mental edge and allowing them fully experience and enjoy their performance.
Equestrian Tai Chi teaches riders to release feelings and emotions that may be holding them back and allows them to ride to the best of their ability.
It can be of benefit to people who hold tension in their bodies, many of us do this without even realising it, if our bodies are stiff and tense, we cannot ride as well as we would like to. Practicing Equestrian Tai Chi teaches us to let go of tension, and to gently stretch and relax the soft tissues of the body. With regular practice, it becomes easier to recognise tension and to release it.
Practicing Equestrian Tai Chi helps us to connect with our horse and to develop intimacy and trust. When a horse bonds with his rider, he finds it naturally easier to relax.
Many horses really seem to enjoy and look forward to their riders practicing Equestrian Tai Chi on their backs. They find it stimulating and different from their normal routine. It gives both horse and rider an opportunity to spend time together, and to simply enjoy each others company.
These are some of the comments we have received back from riders —
My horse goes into a really relaxed state when I practice after riding, it’s a lovely way to finish our ride. Before I started learning Equestrian Tai Chi, when I used to go and tack him up, he would always go to the back of the stable and turn his heels to me, now he comes to the door to let me put the bridle on.
Since I started doing Equestrian Tai Chi, I really notice how my weight is balanced in the saddle, I am much more conscious of my seat bones and how they affect the balance of the horse. I am now more aware of how I used to drop my inside shoulder while riding on a circle. I also find it easier to follow the rhythm of the horse in canter.