What an amazing weekend of self-exploration and discovery! I had that incredible opportunity to be part of a “Ride through Balance” workshop at Sunflower Farm in Bristol, WI. Two days learning about four different modalities and how they take us deeper into our riding, left me seeing a whole new side of myself and my riding. It was so exciting to bring my Yoga for Equestrians to this workshop. Seeing each rider have their own self-discovery throughout the workshop was enlightening. Both Yoga and Riding are ancient practices that are an endless journey of knowledge and understanding. If you can’t connect with yourself, how can you expect to connect with your horse? Horses are such sensitive animals and I think sometimes we don’t recognize their imbalances both physically and mentally that we many times cause.
It was mind-blowing to see how the other modalities – Pilates, Tai Chi, and Balimo/Eckart Meyner – also helped change each rider. The Tai Chi required amazing control and strength without tension, needless to say my quads were singing by the end. The Pilates was very similar to my Yoga only focusing on more of the core strength. The Balimo/Eckart Meyner was definitely my favorite. This modality truly showed me my strengths and weaknesses. Between the exercises and the Balimo chair, I discovered where my pelvis would get stuck which helped me to understand some of my own riding issues. And better yet, how to improve them. Best of all, seeing the transformation of each rider when they were mounted really showed the effects of each of these practices. Crooked riders became straighter, tense riders became more relaxed, and horses became happier. I think I am addicted!
My own personal goal after this experience is to absorb as much new knowledge as my brain can take and then bring it to my students. I want nothing more than to see that bond and harmony between all my riders and their horses. A smile on both! I have already ordered my own Balimo chair!