Fitness by design…. It’s what red ribbons are made of!
In my last blog post ‘Are you horse fit?’, I covered the importance of rider fitness and suggested ways that we, as riders, can identify areas for improvement.
We looked at what we ask of our bodies in our riding, considered injuries and possible weaknesses to help us identify our fitness goals.
Over the next few months I want to explore these areas in much more detail, with the goal being to help you to become a fitter, stronger rider able to perform to the best of your ability.
Having read my first article, you should have a better idea of where you want to get to with your riding fitness training. In my next article we’ll talk about specific ways you can test your fitness, strength and flexibility to better understand where you need to focus. But first we’ll briefly explore the 3 key areas of fitness that I hope will become your secret success weapons.
Your fitness 1, 2, 3…
To achieve your fitness goals you need to look at 3 different areas of fitness and consider what you need to get out of each one:
- Cardio: Love it or hate it cardio is a necessity of life….but at least there are plenty of different types to choose from, so pick one you enjoy so you stick with it! As a rider I believe HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is a great choice. Cardiowise it is far closer to what we do in competition compared to just running or cycling at a set pace for a long period of time.
- Flexibility: Good flexibility not only improves your riding, but also helps to prevent injury. It only takes a little bit of time, but has huge benefits.
- Strength training: [disclaimer – I’m a HUGE fan of strength training…see the above photo for how I like to spend my evenings!] Strength training is relevant to all riding disciplines and is key to improving your riding. Think full body training, think symmetry, think injury prevention…….. like we do with our horses – we want to be balanced and symmetrical….and look good in jodhpurs!
In later blogs I will cover some of the strength training methods to help get you closer to your rider goals.
When designing your new fitness horsey lifestyle, it is so important to make it realistic and fun. As far as possible, choose activities that you enjoy and that you can fit into your life easily…..and around you horse plans!
But, tell me what I should be doing?
I’ll explore a range of activites and exercises that will improve your riding in the coming weeks and months. So stay in touch: